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Author: Eric Madrid (Eric Madrid), doctor

According to the journal of Nutrition, nearly 45 percent of Americans have a zinc deficiency in your diet. More than 15 percent of people around the world lack zinc. This problem is very widespread in Africa South of the Sahara and South Asia.

With age the absorption of important minerals such as zinc, can be disrupted. In addition, the lack in the diet of foods containing zinc, or regular use of alcohol can also lead to chronically low levels of zinc. Zinc deficiency is associated with skin problems and blood, increased risk of infection, impairment of vision, mental disorders, arthritis and urinary problems. Zinc also plays an important role in brain health, where levels 10 times greater than in the blood.

Essential for the metabolism of enzymes in the brain and throughout the body, zinc is involved in over 300 biochemical reactions and is an essential component of more than 2000 proteins.

Deficiency symptoms of zinc

  • The reduction or loss of sense of taste
  • Decreased sense of smell
  • Increased risk of infection
  • Increase the risk of intestinal infection
  • Chronic diarrhea
  • Dryness of the skin (dermatitis)
  • Growth retardation in children
  • Low levels of zinc have the expectant mother increases the risk of autism in offspring
  • Bad memory
  • Low sperm count in the semen, leading to infertility
  • Increased risk of depression

Drugs, depleting reserves of zinc

Commonly prescribed prescription drugs can reduce zinc absorption or increase excretion of zinc from the body. If you are taking these medications, do not stop taking without consulting with your doctor. The consumption of quality multivitamins containing zinc should help prevent a deficiency caused by the use of the following drugs:

Drugs that reduce acidity

Selling reduces the acidity of drugs that block the absorption of zinc and other nutrients has become a global industry generating billions of dollars. In 2013, total global sales of drugs that reduce the acidity amounted to more than $ 10 billion. These drugs include ranitidine, famotidine, omeprazole, esomeprazole and pantoprazole.

Angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors

This class of drugs, also known as ACE inhibitors, used to treat high blood pressure. Examples of such drugs are lisinopril, benazepril, enalapril, captopril and ramipril. Studies show that the use of this class of drugs on a regular basis can lead to increase the excretion of zinc in urine.


Diuretics — this class of drugs to normalize blood pressure, which are often used as first-line therapy for the treatment of high blood pressure. These include hydrochlorothiazide, triamterene-hydrochlorothiazide (Dyazide, Maxzide), chlorthalidone and furosemide (Lasix). Unfortunately, their use on a regular basis can lead to a decrease in zinc level in the blood, in addition to the loss of potassium and magnesium.

Birth control pills

The contraceptive pill was first approved as a means to prevent pregnancy in 1960. Today they take more than 100 million women worldwide. Effective when used correctly in 99% of cases, these pills can Deplete the reserves of nutrients, including zinc.


Some antibiotics, such as ciprofloxacin, levofloxacin and tetracycline can interact with zinc in the intestine, which leads to reduced absorption of zinc. If you are taking antibiotics, particularly over a long time, it is necessary to consider the possibility of taking zinc supplements.

The best food sources of zinc (the content of 3 grams)

  • Oysters — 74 mg
  • Roast beef — 7 mg
  • Alaskan (king) crab — 6.5 mg
  • Beef steak — 3 mg
  • Cereal — 3.5 mg
  • Omar — 3,4 mg
  • Pork chop and 2.9 mg
  • Baked beans (1/2 Cup) and 2.9 mg
  • Chicken — 2.4 mg
  • Fruit yogurt (8 oz/240 ml) — 1.9 mg

13 reasons optimize consumption of zinc

  • The fight against colds
  • Help in reducing acne
  • Optimize your memory and brain health
  • Reducing the risk of depression
  • Help in the treatment of attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD/add)
  • Help in the treatment of traumatic brain injury (SST)
  • Aid in the healing of wounds
  • Preventing sunburn
  • Aid in the prevention of diarrhea in children 6 months and older
  • Optimization of the immune system
  • Optimization of protein synthesis
  • Optimization of health DNA
  • Support adequate reproduction of cells

The fight against colds

The common cold is the most common infection with which the person faces in their life. According to estimates, there are over 220 different viruses that cause respiratory infections in humans. Usually the disease begins in one to three days after infection, and the duration of the common cold usually lasts for seven days, although in some cases it may last for several weeks. The same virus is never infect a person twice and although no cure cold does not exist, there are ways to prevent infection and zinc is one of them.

Numerous studies have demonstrated the benefits of zinc to prevent colds. A study conducted by the journal British journal of Clinical Pharmacology in 2016, showed that “patients with common colds can recommend to try zinc lozenges to treat colds,” and the findings of a study conducted in 2017, stipulates that “patients with colds should be encouraged to try lozenges with zinc acetate for 24 hours after the onset of symptoms”.

Many holistic practices are recommended to start taking zinc lozenges as soon as you are exposed to the virus. This important mineral Supplement should always be kept in the medicine Cabinet and start taking as soon as you feel the first symptoms. Another study conducted in 2017, has shown that lozenges with zinc gluconate and zinc acetate are equally effective. Recommended dose: zinc lozenges, 30 mg, as indicated on the label.

Help in reducing acne

Acne (acne) is a common reason why teenagers and young people visit a family doctor. It is believed that acne is largely connected with diet, including products with a high degree of processing, and hormones. The sale of medications, prescription and without, is a multimillion-dollar industry. Research shows that zinc taken orally can help.

The 2013 study, the results of which were published in the journal of Drugs in Dermatology, showed that zinc, taken orally or used topically may be useful in the treatment of acne due to its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Moreover, as was established in the course of the study in 2017, described in the journal Dermatologic Therapy, ” Zinc is a promising alternative to other methods of acne treatment due to low cost, efficacy and lack of systemic side effects.”

Optimize your memory and brain health

Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease cause a gradual loss of memory. Most at risk are people aged 65 years and older. Zinc plays an important role in brain health. When the lack of people may experience difficulty remembering. However, zinc is only part of the equation, the second part of which is copper. It is important to know the ratio between copper and zinc. The contents of both minerals in the body can be checked with a simple blood test. According to a study published in the journal “Alzheimer’s Disease” (Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease), low levels of zinc and too high in copper are risk factors for development of dementia. According to researchers at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), Dr. Dale Bredesen, the optimal ratio of copper and zinc was 0.8:1,2. Optimum level of zinc content in the blood is 90-110 mg/DL.

Reducing the risk of depression

Depressive disorder affects millions of people around the world. The cause is usually a combination of social factors, financial problems and biochemical imbalances. Symptoms include the desire to sleep, lack of interest in the activity, feelings of guilt, which is already hard concentration, stiffness, and sometimes thoughts of harming himself. If you have similar symptoms it is important to seek help from a specialist in the field of health. Studies show that people suffering from depression are more inclined to have lower levels of zinc in the blood.

The study of 2017, the results of which were published in the journal Frontiers in Pharmacology, confirmed the importance of zinc for patients with depression. The same study showed that the replenishment of zinc is useful in the treatment of psychosis.

The syndrome of attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD/add)

A study conducted in 2017 in Russia, showed that zinc can help kids with symptoms of ADHD. Another study in 2017, the results of which were published in the journal Current Psychiatry Reports showed that elevated levels of zinc useful in the treatment of ADHD in individuals with an increased risk of such deficits. There is a need for additional studies.

Traumatic brain injury (SST)

Traumatic brain injury is the result of brain injury, usually occurring after a concussion. SST increases the risk of developing dementia, depression, and drug dependence. A study conducted in 2017 in Russia, showed that zinc helps restore neurons in the brain. There is a need for additional studies.

Chronic wound defects of the skin

Chronic wounds are common in diabetics and also in patients who are unable to walk in connection with the condition. According to research by 2017, the low level of nutrients, including zinc, are more common in individuals with chronic ulcers of the legs. Further study of 2017, the results of which were published in the journal of Wound Care, shows that the local use of zinc oxide useful for wound healing.

Protection against sunburn

Zinc oxide is used externally in the formulas of sunscreens and may be useful to prevent sunburn.


In General, zinc is a safe mineral. As in most cases when taking an important moderation. However, excessive consumption of zinc may cause side effects, including nausea, stomach cramps and headaches. It is recommended to consume no more than 150-450 mg per day, especially when taking dietary supplements, because these values are associated with a decrease in absorption of copper.

Intranasal application of zinc is not recommended and leads to loss of smell.

Recommended dose:

  • The best absorbed are zinc picolinate, zinc gluconate, bis-glycinate, zinc citrate and zinc. The usual dose is 10 to 25 mg per day
  • You can also take a quality multivitamin with zinc
  • Zinc lozenges — take as directed on label
  • Zinc oxide is recommended for topical application and wound care
  • Zinc oxide can also be used as sunscreen
  • Zinc sulfate and zinc oxide are absorbed worse and are not recommended by the author of this article for oral use.

Zinc may help optimize your health

Zinc is an essential mineral, critical for optimum health. Nutritious, well-balanced diet rich in foods containing zinc, are important to ensure a sufficient level of zinc in the blood and tissues. Zinc can be helpful in various health disorders. Some medications can reduce the level of zinc in human body; their admission requires special care to ensure adequate intake of zinc.


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  • The author of this article — doctor Eric Madrid, a member of the American Council on integrative and holistic medicine, certified American Board of family medicine and the American Council on integrative and holistic medicine. He is the author of “the purpose of the vitamin D, the healing energy of the sun.” Eric Madrid graduated from medical school at Ohio State University. He is a partner of Rancho Family Medical Group and is accepting patients in Menifee, California. More information about Dr. Madrid here.


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