The upcoming cold season dictates its own conditions: the body actively consumes trace elements and vitamins that support immune functions. Zinc plays an important role in the functioning of the immune system. Where to look for it, in what products?
With the onset of cold weather, the likelihood of meeting with viruses that cause cold symptoms naturally increases. If the body is healthy, the immune system works fully, the body copes with infections faster and more actively, and the risk of a severe course of the disease and serious complications is minimal. But in order for the immune system to be complete, it needs enough protein, vitamins, and trace elements.
Zinc plays one of the key roles in immune defense. It is its reserves that are useful to replenish now to help the body protect itself from viruses.
Why Is There Metal in The Body?
By its nature, zinc is classified as a metal, but in the human body, it is not in the form of alloys but in the form of organic compounds that perform the functions of enzymes, co-factors, and structural parts of cells.
From a medical point of view, zinc belongs to the category of trace elements, that is, substances that come in very small quantities – a few milligrams per day. But this trace element is vital for the full functioning of the body. Zinc compounds are structural components of some proteins, enzymes, receptors, and cell membranes involved in the metabolism and construction of genetic material.
How does It Work?
In our body, zinc, due to its antioxidant properties, prevents the development of chronic diseases. These are, for example, diabetes, oncology, and cardiovascular diseases. In addition, zinc in combination with other substances reduces the development of inflammatory processes.
On the part of the nervous system, it improves cognitive functions – improves thinking, memory, improves mood, and attention. Zinc contributes to the normalization of the cerebellum, which affects orientation in space and coordination of movements.
Vital for Immune Defense
But the most important function of zinc in the body is to maintain the optimal state of the immune system and stimulate antiviral activity. Research and experience of doctors during the COVID-19 pandemic showed the effectiveness of zinc preparations in combating the symptoms of SARS. A milder and shorter course of the disease was noted, as a result of which the risk of developing post-covid syndrome was reduced, and the consequences of the coronavirus infection were minimized.
Norm Depends on Age
The human body contains about 2-3 grams of zinc. Values may vary depending on gender, age, chronic diseases, and characteristics of the functioning of the intestine, namely the absorption capacity of the mucous membrane.
The maximum allowable intake of zinc per day is 25 mg, on average, the average person needs about 15 mg daily. An overdose can be caused by the consumption of various zinc compounds over 150 mg, it is accompanied by intestinal disorders, nausea, vomiting, and headache. But getting a similar problem if you just consume foods rich in zinc is impossible. An overdose can be obtained by taking high doses of zinc supplements for a sufficiently long time.
And one more thing: with excessive intake of zinc, the content of copper in the body may suffer, and this is already fraught with problems with the formation of new blood cells, and malfunctions in metabolism.
Signs of Zinc Deficiency in The Body
- Drawn to salty and sweet
- Changes in taste and smell
- Weight gain or loss
- Hair loss
- Digestive problems, including diarrhea
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- Hormonal problems, including PMS or menopause
- Low immunity
- Poor concentration and memory
- Wounds do not heal well, and there is skin irritation or infection
- Nervous Dysfunction
Prolonged zinc deficiency can lead to dysfunction of the pituitary and gonads, carbohydrate metabolism disorders, problems with blood glucose metabolism and the development of diabetes mellitus, and an increased risk of neoplasms and prostate adenoma in men.
However, only a doctor can accurately determine zinc deficiency by prescribing an appropriate study.
List Of Affordable Products Enrich with Zinc
The main dietary sources of zinc are quite diverse and belong to different food categories. Oysters are in the first place in terms of zinc content, but this is not an affordable product for all categories of our people. Among the more common and affordable products we can distinguish:
- Wheat bran in various versions (cereals, dishes with bran)
- Veal liver in boiled and stewed form, pates
- Different types of meat (beef, veal)
- Sesame oil
- Raw pumpkin seeds
- Offal dishes, especially chicken heart
- Pine nuts
- Different types of legumes
- Various greens.
In order for zinc to be well absorbed, it is necessary to control the intake of the following vitamins with it: retinol (vitamin A), tocopherol (vitamin E), and ascorbic acid (vitamin C). Also, a small amount of phosphorus, calcium, and lithium ions enhance the pharmacological properties of zinc.