Zinc is one of the essential micro minerals that a human body requires in the diet on a daily basis to maintain:
- Healthy immune system
- Balance blood sugar levels
- Acts as a neurotransmitter to sense smells and tastes
- Trigger enzymes
- Stabilize metabolic rate
Symptoms that indicate your body requires zinc
- Impaired sense of taste or smell
- Lack of appetite
- Growth failure in children
- Frequent colds and infections
- Hair loss
- Eye & skin lesions
Make sure the intake quantity of Zinc should neither be too less or more.A human body needs in very small quantity of about 15mg of Zinc intake on a daily basis. Animals are the better sources of Zinc than compared to that of plants.
Below is the list of foods that are rich sources of zinc
Animal foods rich in zinc
If you are non-vegetarian then you probably don’t need to bother about the Zincs as almost any kind and variety of animal or seafoods has considerable amounts of Zinc packed.
Almost any type and variety of oysters provide about 16-182 mg of zinc per 100g serving that accounts for 110%-1200% of the DV for zinc.
The liver of any animal is packed with vitamins and minerals and most commonly has the most zinc with 12mg per 100g serving accounting for 81% of the DV that is 8.98mg of zinc (60% DV) in a cooked slice of liver (80g).
Mutton also commonly referred to as Lamb provides between 4.2-8.7mg of zinc per 100g serving, accounting for 28%-58% DV.
Crabs are a great source of zinc that provides about 7.6mg (51% DV) of zinc per 100 gram serving, which is 10.2mg (68% DV) in an average crab.
Besides, lobster, prawns (shrimps), red meats, poultry, clams, mussels are some of the most powerful natural sources of zinc
Nuts & seeds
If you are a vegetarian and looking for the best sources of Zinc then Pumpkin seeds, Watermelon seeds, Sesame seeds, Almonds, peanuts, pine nuts, cashews and sunflower seeds are viable options that has highest concentrations of zinc available for keeping your zinc levels at a healthy high. The advantage being less fat and cholesterol than that of meats
Chocolate or dark chocolate in the form of unsweetened baking chocolate or cocoa powder, or as milk chocolates provides you rich zinc levels.
Besides, oats, Yogurt, spinach, green peas are readily available and are very good sources of zinc.
Top health benefits of zinc
Reduction in the function of the immunity system can be seen due to diets containing low amount of zinc. In almost four weeks only of low zinc content diet this reduction can be visible and can be reversed with consumption of zinc.
2-3.5 milligrams of zinc everyday can be found in low zinc content diet or this is even less than the zinc content of in Mediterranean-Style Salad single serving. Elderly people are the ones who are mostly prone to reduction in immunity due to low zinc content.
Though even for them also it can be reversed within a few weeks. Mediterranean-style diet is suggested by one research group to save the elderly from deficiency of zinc.
Symptoms of acne have been found in young men by researchers due to deficiency of zinc. The effect of lack of zinc can be seen as soon as within 12 days on the health of the skin.
Many other researchers showed different skin or skin related symptoms such as facial rash, foot fungus, and canker sores. But just like before each of these symptoms will go away with return of zinc in the diet.
It is suggested in this study that little too zinc in a meal can compromise the health of the skin. Thus your zinc intake should be only till the recommended intake for proper skin health.
The loss of sense of taste and appetite can be caused due to acute zinc depletion. The amount of zinc which lacks causing loss of sense of taste and appetite is more than the amount causing immune system dysfunction and is also related to a different factor such as treatment of cancer or anorexia.
It has been found by a research group that loss in the sense of taste is found among 15% of the elderly population or can be due to some more serious problem so report to the doctor in case this happens to you.
In majority of the people this loss in the sense of taste can be reversed like other zinc deficiency problems.
Braised Red Curry Lamb and Vegetables as well as Healthy Chef’s Salad with Walnuts and French dressing are some food rich in zinc and also contain a good spice zing. Even to vision also zinc can be critical.
Zinc along with vitamin A helps in light sensation and in sending the brain impulses of nerve. Though not much is found about what problem can be caused but it said reduction in the levels of zinc in the retina can cause loss of vision.
Male reproductive health
Motility can be impaired along with the sperm count due to lack of zinc in the advanced level. In a research study where young male volunteers who only ate 10% of the required everyday zinc for a little more than a month, measurable changes are found in the composition and quantity of sperm.
This is supported by studies which correlate diseases causing impairment of nutrition of zinc with reduction in fertility. A 7-Minute Sautéed Crimini Mushroom is rich in zinc and selenium which is need for proper production of sperm.