Are You Getting Enough Zinc?

By: Katie Lisbon CPLC
Zinc is an essential mineral that can not be produced or stored by the body. Our bodies rely on zinc in order to preform numerous functions such as immune function, protein synthesis, wound healing, growth and development. The only way the body can obtain its daily requirement of zinc is through diet (food) or supplements. However, over 2 billion people throughout the world aren’t meeting these requirements and don’t even know they’re deficient in zinc.

Signs Zinc Deficiency To Look For:

  • Acne
  • Chronic inflammation
  • Loss of taste and/or smell
  • Frequent colds/flu
  • Excessive hair loss
  • White spots on your nails
  • Poor memory
  • Chronic infections or slow healing wounds
  • Loss of appetite
  • Poor night vision
  • Diarrhea
  • Depression
  • Psoriasis
  • Dermatitis
  • Macular degeneration (eyes)
  • Delayed growth in children

Zinc deficiency is more commonly seen peoples with chronic liver, pancreas, and kidney disease, chronic digestive conditions, diabetes, sickle cell anemia, and cancer. People who abuse or have a long history of drinking large amounts of alcohol may also be at risk for having a zinc deficiency. Individuals who eat little to no meat such as a vegetarian or vegan are known to have lower amounts of zinc in their diets as well.

There is a very simple test you can take called the zinc tally test. This test is available on amazon and is very simple to use. You simply hold 10 mL (equivalent to two tsps) in your mouth for at least 10 seconds. If you can experience any taste (taste of the zinc) your most likely in need of more zinc in your diet. The liquid can be swallowed after tasting.

Zinc Tally Test

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Statements regarding dietary supplements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or health condition.

Foods High In Zinc:

  • Crab
  • Shrimp
  • Mussels/Oysters
  • Red meat
  • Cheese
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Cashews
  • Almonds
  • Peanuts
  • Pine nuts
  • Sesame seeds
  • Hemp seeds
  • Chickpeas
  • Lentils
  • Beans

While nuts, seeds, beans and lentils can be a good source of zinc, your body may not be able to absorb what it needs due to the phytic acid. Phytic acid is found naturally in plant seeds and it blocks the body’s absorption of zinc and other minerals. This is why vegetarians and vegans can still be deficient in zinc even when eating these plant sources. To minimize phytic acid and maximize zinc absorption, it is recommended to eat these foods after they have been sprouted, fermented or soaked first.

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