Does Zinc make a difference in your immune system function? It sure does. Zinc is also important to almost every organ in the body. The daily recommendation of zinc is 15 milligrams, although some people may need more.
The average American gets only 6 to 12 milligrams from their food. Women and teens appear to get the least. If we are low in zinc and don’t supplement with a multi-vitamin or separate zinc supplement, we can become deficient. There are also certain medications that can lower the amount of zinc in the body.
We didn’t always have trouble getting enough zinc every day from our food. One of the reasons why we don’t get as much now is because cereal is processed a different way than it used to be. We used to be able to get 80% of the zinc we needed from a bowl of cereal in the morning. Now, 80% of zinc is lost in the processing.
Now, with the loss of zinc in cereals and poor food choices in general, we have more people low or even deficient in zinc. Symptoms that are associated with being low in zinc include tiredness, low energy, ear infections, upper respiratory infections, and brittle hair or nails. These are not life-threatening illnesses and so many people simply put up with them.
Our quality of life is affected if we have ongoing symptoms that keep us from feeling great and being able to accomplish everything we want. Since being low in zinc can be somewhat quickly tested, it seems worth the effort to find out.
If you have any of the symptoms stated above, especially on an ongoing basis, and you already take a multivitamin that has zinc, you can use another test to determine if your zinc levels are too low. You can take a zinc supplement (one of the least expensive vitamins on the market, even a high quality pharmaceutical grade brand should be under ten dollars) for 30 days. At that time you re-evaluate your symptoms.
The extra zinc should be in the amount of 15 milligrams per day, and should be taken for a full month. If the symptoms you’ve been having improve during that time, it is most likely you were low in zinc. This is a short test and can give you valuable (quality of life) answers.
The amount of zinc an individual needs will vary from person to person, and that is why it is important to assess your own needs. A medication you may take, or something else going on inside your body, could be causing you to be low. You may require just that little bit more so that you can receive all the benefits zinc has to offer your body.
Zinc powers up the immune system that is your body’s first line of defense when germs, bacteria, viruses, and other illnesses threaten to make you sick. It is needed to help build cells that will provide resistance. Zinc helps you fight both short-term and long-term illnesses. Having enough zinc present in the body is important at all ages.
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