Essential for Health

You may currently take zinc when you have a cold or flu. However, did you know that your cells need zinc on a daily basis? The adult body contains approximately 2.0 to 3.0 g of zinc, mostly stored inside your cells. Zinc has far reaching actions which affect the health of your whole body.

Are Your Zinc Levels Low?

If you experience any of the following symptoms, your zinc levels may be low:

  • Recurrent colds, flus and/or infections
  • Poor appetite / weight loss
  • Reduced sense of taste and/or smell
  • Sluggish digestion
  • Slow growth and development
  • Slow healing
  • Acne and other skin conditions
  • Infertility
  • Sugar cravings
  • Stress, anxiety, and depression
  • White spots under fingernails
  • Rough or pale skin

The Low ­Down on Zinc Deficiency

Many people are deficient in zinc, particularly here in Western Australia. Inadequate dietary intake, increased physiological needs, or a diet high in sugar or alcohol and profuse sweating are common causes of zinc deficiency.

Zinc is an important mineral that helps to regulate the cell production in the immune system. In our bodies there are more than 300 different enzymes that require zinc in order to function normally. It is used up in various metabolic processes and eliminated through usual excretory and urinary channels, hence the need for frequent replenishing. Ideally this is maintained through a well-balanced nutritious diet, but how do you know if you are deficient?

A Simple Taste Test

Here at Peak Natural Health, we can do a simple free taste test to determine if you have a zinc deficiency. The test involves holding a zinc solution in your mouth for 10 seconds and assessing your taste response. The test relies on the presence of gustin, a zinc dependent enzyme. A lack of zinc reduces the activity of gustin, thus altering your taste perception. Alternatively we can complete a hair, tissue mineral test (HTMA) to see what your levels are and how that relates to other minerals.  See here for further details.

Nourishing Your Body from A to Zinc

Zinc protects your cells from free radical damage, providing antioxidant defence. Zinc’s actions include supporting healthy immunity, and improving appetite and digestive function. Its ability to increase the healing rate of acne and wounds makes it indispensable for skin health. Zinc also plays a key role in blood sugar metabolism, for greater blood sugar control. Zinc aids growth and development, and is an important nutrient during pregnancy for both mother and baby. Zinc is also important for male health, fertility and sperm production, increasing sperm motility and concentration, therefore enhancing the chances of conception. Zinc is found in high concentrations in the hippocampus area of the brain which controls thought and memory. Recent research has shown zinc to be good for the brain, reducing stress and having a positive impact on mental function and mood.

You Don’t Just Have to Eat Oysters!

You can top up your zinc levels by increasing the intake of zinc­ rich foods: Oysters are a rich source of zinc, but if you are not a fan of oysters, other fish include; sardines, tuna and haddock. Other good sources include; beef, pork, chicken and lamb which all contain zinc. Non ­animal sources include nuts, whole grains, legumes, yeast and ginger.

Sometimes supplementation is required.  Choosing the right type of zinc is also important, we use a few, depending on individual need. Meta Zn® is highly absorbable or a zinc bisglycinate. With its enhanced cellular uptake, it increases the availability of zinc to your body. Meta Zn® is less likely to interact with other minerals, including copper, calcium and iron. The more zinc your body can absorb, the greater benefits it will deliver in improving your health.

If you would like to test your zinc levels, then please contact us at the clinic.