What’s the Deal with Zinc
The trace element zinc is required by the body for different tasks. Since zinc cannot be formed by the body alone, approximately 10 mg a day has to be supplied regularly through our diet.
Like other trace elements, zinc is only needed in small amounts, or traces. Zinc can be found in oysters, cheese, nuts, oats, fish, meat and organs. Next to iron, zinc is the most often found trace element in the body.
Important During Winter
Why is zinc especially important during winter? Zinc is necessary for a functioning immune system. Zinc is needed for our immune system’s defensive cells, since immunoglobulins, which are substances found in the blood, are very important for immune function. Without zinc, the T cells of the immune system would not exist. They are only made active by the trace element.
Zinc is both necessary for normal cell growth and for development, growth and regeneration processes. Zinc should therefore be taken in adequate amounts, especially by children and adolescents.
Zinc accumulates in the skin cells in high concentrations and is of great importance for the renewal of the epidermis, the top layer of the skin. This trace element supports the formation of proteins that replace old tissue and contributes to the maintenance of normal skin.
The Acid-Base Balance
To maintain its natural acid-base balance, our body needs zinc. The trace element is essential for the formation of bicarbonates by activating the enzyme carbonic anhydrase, which uses zinc as a cofactor. Therefore, zinc has a very important role in a balanced acid-base metabolism.
Two trace elements support sugar metabolism. Chromium contributes to the maintenance of normal blood glucose levels and zinc contributes to normal carbohydrate and macronutrient metabolism.
Zinc contributes to the maintenance of normal testosterone levels in the blood and is also important for fertility. Mussels and oysters contain an above average amount of zinc, and are said to be aphrodisiacs.
With All Your Senses
The trace element zinc is also important for the metabolism of vitamin A. It is generally known that vitamin A is essential for healthy visual function, but few people know that zinc also has meaning for the perception of taste and smell as well. For this reason, it basically contributes to all of our senses.
- Zinc contributes to normal acid-base metabolism
- Zinc contributes to normal carbohydrate metabolism
- Zinc contributes to a normal metabolism of macronutrients
- Zinc contributes to the normal function of the immune system
- Zinc contributes to protecting cells from oxidative stress
- Zinc contributes to normal fertility and reproduction as well as the maintenance of normal testosterone levels in the blood
- Zinc contributes to the maintenance of normal skin, hair and nails as well as normal protein synthesis
- Zinc has a function in cell division.
Zinc contributes to a normal vitamin A metabolism and to preserving normal vision