What food provide Zinc ?
Zinc is found in a wide variety of
food. Oysters contain more zinc per serving than any other food. Other
sources includes beans, nuts, certain seafood, whole grains, fortified
breakfast cereals and dairy products. Zinc absorption is greater from a
diet high in animal protein than a diet rich in plant proteins. So, it
is important for vegetarians to eat plenty of food that is rich in this
Only 20% of the zinc present in the
diet is actually absorbed by the body. Dietary fibre and phytic acid,
found in bran, wholegrain cereals, pulses and nuts, inhibit zinc
absorption. Phytic acid forms a highly insoluble complex with zinc,
which the body cannot absorb. However, cooking processes can reduce the
adverse effect of both phytic acid and dietary fibre on Zinc absorption.
Baking can destroy over half the phytic acid in whole meal breed.
Zinc is lost via the faeces, urine,
hair, skin, sweat, semen and also menstruation.
The Reference Daily Intake (RDI) of
The RDI (Reference Daily Intake) or DV
(Daily Values) for Zinc is 15mg. Higher doses are usually reserved for
Zinc deficiency most often occurs when
zinc intake is inadequate or poorly absorbed, when there is increased
losses of Zinc from the body, or when the body's requirement for zinc
increases. Signs of Zinc deficiency include growth retardation, hair
loss, diarrhoea, delayed sexual maturation and impotence, eye and skin
lesions and loss of appetite. There is also evidence of weight loss,
delayed healing of wound, taste abnormalities and occurrence of mental
Zinc over dosage
Long-term used of more than 100mg a day
has been shown to impair immunity and lower level of HDL (good)
cholesterol, larger doses (more than 200mg a day) can cause nausea,
vomiting and diarrhea.
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