Zinc deficiency

Why does everyone talk about Zinc?
Zinc is an essential trace mineral and is one of the most abundant to be found in the body – 60% is in the muscles that support your skeleton and 30% is in the bones. It’s important for several reasons, so let’s take a look at why you need to remember to take your Zinc!

It’s all about a healthy structure

So if nothing else it plays an important part in keeping you upright! As mentioned before- your skeleton & muscles need it to function. Not to mention 10% is found in the teeth, hair, nails, skin, liver, leukocytes (white blood cells), prostate, sperm and testes.

 

What your Immune system can’t do without…
Zinc is one nutrient you can look at to improve your immune system to try and prevent those ills and chills.  There is also data to suggest that if you catch something zinc supplementation can help to move it on much quicker.
This mineral is very important in the first line of defence in our bodies. This first line is represented by physical barriers, such as the skin and mucous membrane linings inside the body.

Zinc is found in the mucous secretions of the respiratory system and on the surfaces of lungs and throat.  It has an antimicrobial effect, so helps to kill inhaled bacteria and viruses before they get chance to take hold.

This mineral is also secreted in the saliva and the mucous membranes of the digestive system to kill any ingested invaders.
However, it is not just supporting the barriers that makes zinc important for immunity.  It also supports white blood cell production required by the immune system to fight viruses and bacteria.

 

An essential ingredient that keeps your body humming along
What is a Co-Factor? It means that Zinc makes things happen!
It’s used in more than 100 different enzymes in body. These enzymes are involved in the chemical processes of building things that the body needs or breaking down stuff that it doesn’t want.

Without it (or not enough) these chemical reactions are either slow or just don’t work. Here are a couple of examples:

  • Thyroid function – Zinc is used to make the hormone (TRH) that signals the thyroid to make thyroid hormones. It converts the protein we eat into amino acids, including tyrosine which powers the thyroid hormone production. Finally it is involved in the making of T3 the active form that is used in the muscles
  • Formation of bone – Zinc is used by enzymes in the production of collagen and alkaline phosphatase (ALP), which are important for bone formation.  It is also used to make calcitonin, a hormone that inhibits the breakdown of bone.

30% of the zinc found in a cell is found in the nucleus. This makes sense as it is very involved with DNA and the replication of cells and proteins needed by the body.

 

Defend & Protect
It appears that zinc protects our cell membranes against the oxidative damage that can be caused by other metals in the body, such as iron or copper.

It is protective against other oxidative processes that can be caused by too much sugar or alcohol in out diets.

To find out if your deficient in Zinc, you can get a Zinc test from our Nutritionist, Linda.

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