Zinc. An essential mineral for our body
Published: 28 April, 2020 - Updated: 27 July, 2020
What is zinc?
Zinc is a micronutrient present in all the cells of our body and it is essential to keep our body healthy.
Since the human body has no reserves of zinc in the conventional sense of storage, we must consume it regularly as part of our diet. This can be achieved through foodsthat are a source of zinc and can be supplemented with dietary supplements containing it in order to reap its full benefits.
What is the function of zinc in the body?
Zinc is necessary for the proper development and maintenance of the human body, especially during the growing period and pregnancy. Its presence is key to various biological systems and processes, such as immune function (responsible for fighting viruses or bacteria), wound healing or musculoskeletal development.
Benefits of zinc
It has been proven that zinc has numerous benefits in our organism because it is found in various processes and systems.
Zinc contributes to the normal metabolism of acid-base, carbohydrates, macronutrients, fatty acids and vitamin A. It plays a role in the body for the manufacture of proteins and our DNA, present in all our cells.
Similarly, it also helps in the maintenance of the immune system, bones, vision, cognitive function, as well as skin, hair and nails.
Furthermore, zinc is involved in the process of cell division, protecting cells against oxidative stress and facilitating their functioning.
Benefits of Zinc for women
Along with all the above benefits, zinc also has functions at the level of the hormonal system, contributing to fertility and reproduction. This is why women should include sufficient amounts of zinc in their diet, which can be supplemented with specially formulated dietary supplements for women.
Why is an adequate intake of zinc important?
Zinc, especially in children and adolescents, helps the rate of growth.
It also promotes appetite, sense of taste and weight maintenance, and normal zinc concentration levels help with wound healing.
Adequate levels of zinc also help maintain the hair, skin and eyes.
Foods with zinc
Zinc is present in many staples of a balanced diet. The main foods rich in zinc are red meat and poultry, fish or seafood and dairy products.
Dried fruits such as nuts, legumes or wholegrain cereals also have high levels of zinc.
Recommended daily requirement of zinc
The appropriate levels of zinc for our body are expressed in milligrams (mg). The human body has about 2 grams of zinc within its fluids and tissues, and because its metabolism is high, it is excreted quickly. This is why it is important to have an adequate daily intake of zinc.
According to the European legislation in its Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011, on Daily Reference Intakes of Vitamins and Minerals (Adults), states that the recommended amount for Zinc is 10mg per day.