Zinc deficiency has unpleasant consequences such as dry skin, brittle nails and falling hair, as well as increased susceptibility to infections, flu and colds. With the existing colds zinc speeds recovery.
Get enough zinc is very important in the cold season: this mineral is the primary defender against colds and flu. A study by researchers at Ohio state University has shown that zinc is responsible for how the body responds to infectious challenges of the external environment, since it adjusts the return force of the immune system. The level of zinc in the body can prove crucial in the disease process or recovery of man, scientists said.
In addition to prevent colds zinc performs other functions: it is required for the activity of various hormones, e.g., insulin, as well as for the unrestricted use of nutrients and growth of cells. In children, an adequate supply of zinc even increases the ability to concentrate and learn.
How much zinc does one person need? German society of nutrition (DGE) believes that an adult is sufficient to consume from 7 to 10 milligrams of zinc per day, children from 3 to 9.5 milligrams, depending on age.
What prevents the body to absorb zinc? Iron, copper and phytic acid act as antagonists of zinc. A diet rich in these substances reduces the availability of zinc to the body (phytic acid, for example, is full of peanuts and soybeans, and red meat contains a lot of iron).
In addition, zinc absorption in the body due to alcohol abuse, some diseases of the gastrointestinal tract (Crohn’s disease, celiac disease), diabetes. Lower levels of zinc can wound healing, severe sweating, older age, pregnancy.
What is dangerous zinc deficiency? The body does not produce zinc alone, only obtained from food. In the cold season zinc deficiency is dangerous because it promotes apathy, depression, bulimia. This element is responsible for the contacts between nerve cells – the less zinc, the worse they are and the higher the risk of mental disorders.
Given the fact that zinc is vital for the immune system, its lack weakens the protective function of cell membranes, which makes people vulnerable to infections.
Also, when zinc deficiency becomes more delicate and prone to hair loss hair frequent skin inflammation, it may be irritable bowel syndrome, worse tolerated by stress.
Where to get zinc? Among the richest sources of zinc are beef, eggs, lentils, Parmesan cheese, and Edam, crabs and oysters, white beans, yellow peas, whole wheat and rye bread, oats and oatmeal.
The excess of zinc is harmful. The same as zinc deficiency, harm to the body can excessive consumption, experts warn. In this case, possible symptoms, from nausea and diarrhea to fever and flu-like symptoms. Dangerous is the excess daily dose of zinc in two grams.