Zinc Supplements

Do you need zinc supplements?

People who are unable to get the needed amount of zinc from their regular diet or those who have deficiency may find it necessary to take zinc supplements. This mineral supplement is involved in multiple aspects of cellular metabolism is available as dietary supplements.

Sources

Foods that are considered good sources of zinc are lean red meats, seafood such as oysters and herring, peas as well as beans. Whole grains can also be a good source of zinc, although having large amounts of whole grains in your body can decrease the amount of zinc your body absorbs.

Calf’s liver is rich in zinc. Crimini mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms, spinach, and venison are also some good sources of zinc.

Good sources include asparagus, chard, scallops, lamb, beef, maple syrup, shrimp, green peas, yogurt, oats, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, turkey, miso, and spelt.
Zinc may also be added to your diet through the use of treated or galvanized cookware.
Food stored in tin cans which are uncoated can reduce the amount of zinc to be availed for absorption from the food.

Health benefits

Do you need to take zinc supplements?

An essential mineral such as zinc can assist in wound healing, protein synthesis and DNA synthesis, and can help in our immune function as well in cell division. The recommended dietary allowance for zinc for those 19 years and above is 11 mg for males and 8 mg for females. The RDAs for those below 19 years old vary and increase as one grows older. Those 6 months and below only require about 2 mg of zinc.

The lack of zinc in our body can result to poor night vision, a reduction in the sense of smell and taste, slower wound healing, lower resistance to infection, and slow development of reproductive organs. Other types of zinc supplements are amino acid chelates of zinc which may be an expensive option, topical zinc which is also useful for cold sores and mild skin diseases, zinc oxide present in sun block and some creams. Zinc types that are best absorbed are zinc citrate and zinc picolinate.

Dosage

Zinc supplements may contain multiple forms of zinc such as zinc gluconate, zinc sulfate and zinc acetate. However, only 23 percent of zinc sulfate consists of elemental zinc such that 220 mg of zinc sulfate contains 50 mg of elemental zinc.

Side effects

There are also known side effects of zinc and some may be serious when caused by too much zinc.

Some side effects of too much zinc are restlessness, fever, nausea, abdominal pain, fever, cough, drowsiness, and diarrhea.

It is important to consult your doctor on why type of supplements you should take as well as the right amount of zinc supplement you should take for each day.
Zinc can be effectively absorbed with good nutritional diet. Your doctor’s advice can help you stay within the recommended daily limits based on your age and gender.