Zinc is the second most abundant element in the human body after iron and is present in every cell. It is important for fighting infections and healing injuries.
It is a cofactor in more than three hundred enzymes involved in gene expression, cell proliferation and DNA creation.
Zinc can significantly reduce the risk of age-related diseases such as pneumonia, infection and age-related macular degeneration, while improving the immune response by enhancing the activity of T-cells, which help protect the body from infections.
It contributes to the production of hormones and increases testosterone, which is very important in both men and women. It is essential for the health of the cells of the cardiovascular system, while reducing inflammation and oxidative stress.
Zinc has a positive effect on people with acne problems as it stops the growth of bacteria, while regulating the secretion of oil from the glands.
The human body cannot produce and store zinc, so it needs to get enough of it through food or supplementation to meet the body's daily needs.
Zinc deficiency can cause:
- frequent colds hair loss
- open wounds on the skin
- lack of alertness
- reduced sense of smell and taste
- weight loss
Studies have shown that supplementing with zinc daily can reduce the duration of a cold by up to 33%, while another in 2007 determined that 45 mg of elemental zinc per day reduced the frequency of infection in older adults by 66%.
People who are particularly susceptible to zinc deficiency are athletes because they lose zinc through sweat, vegans and vegetarians because they have low dietary intake, the elderly because of insufficient absorption, teenagers and people with weakened immunity.