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Causes of Zinc Deficiency

Zinc is a chemical compound classified among transitional metals. Human beings require this element in trace amounts for required growth and development. Unfortunately, the human body cannot store the recommended amounts of zinc. Therefore, individuals are supposed to consume foods, beverages and supplements that are rich in zinc to curb the causes of zinc deficiency.

Zinc helps the body to determine cells that are important for growth, disease prevention, gestation and rejuvenation. Moreover, zinc plays an important role of boosting the immune system, the reproductive system and functions of the brain. Most enzymes require zinc to enable them effectively catalyze cellular metabolism.

Also, the body needs zinc to facilitate in the release of hormones and transmittance of nerve impulses. In addition, zinc has effectively been used to curb the symptoms and signs of common cold. Furthermore, zinc enhances the sense of taste and smell as well as protein production. Therefore, lack of zinc consumption results to myriad causes of zinc deficiency as discussed below.

Scientists have outlined various causes of zinc deficiency including consumption of diets that have low percentage of zinc if any is present. Individuals can also suffer from zinc deficiency when they get exposed to too much cooper or when their bodies suddenly demand for a higher consumption of zinc. This especially happens to pregnant women and those that are lactating. Also there are certain illnesses such as gastrointestinal mal-absorption that results to zinc deficiency.

Zinc deficiency is treated by increasing the amount of zinc consumed on a daily basis. Adverse conditions can be treated by the daily intake of zinc supplements. Therefore, consuming foods rich in zinc will help curb zinc deficiency and they include nuts, whole wheat grains, peas, oats, oysters, fish, pumpkin seeds, eggs, legumes, beans, and daily and meat products.

Moreover, individuals are advised to consume food rich in vitamin A, vitamin B6 and vitamin E and minerals like phosphorus, calcium and magnesium. This will increase the ability of their bodies to effectively absorb the zinc element in consumed foods or supplements. Sea food has been ranked to contain the highest percentile of zinc. Oysters have being categorized as comprising the highest amount of zinc in this food cluster as one oyster avails about 13mg of zinc.

On a daily basis children of one to three years are supposed to consume 7mg, those that are four to eight years are supposed to consume 12mg, nine to 13 years should take 23mg while those between 14 and 18 years should eat 34mg and the rest at least 40mg of zinc.


Office of Dietary Supplements (NIH)- Zinc


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