A zinc deficiency makes itself felt

Good for the immune system? Especially in the autumn, many manufacturers advertise with zinc. It is said in the messages, for example, “zinc contributes to normal function of the immune system”. But how healthy zinc is actually? And how dangerous a zinc deficiency? “In fact, zinc for its function in the immune system is well known,” says Daniela Krehl, consultant food and nutrition at the Verbraucherzentrale Bayern.

However, it is not proven that a higher zinc intake actually improves the body functions. “It should not be forgotten that the dose makes the poison,” said Krehl. Too much zinc can benefit the body even more harm than good. Even if the body requires, in principle, zinc, the trace element of a heavy metal. “It can cause symptoms of Overdose poisoning.” (Also interesting: how to recognize iron deficiency)

Too much zinc can have a negative impact

So far, there are, according to the expert, no certain evidence that zinc prevents such as colds, even if the is often suggested. “Due to high revenues from zinc, however, can have negative consequences,” she says. It is, for example, been found that when zinc intakes of 150 to 300 milligrams per day, the white and red blood cells changed.

Zinc plays an important role in the body: It not only acts on the immune system, but is involved in almost all life processes. It contributes, for example, to transport oxygen and carbon dioxide and is involved in wound healing and the formation of the red blood dye. (Read also: how important Vitamin C really is)

What happens if there is too little zinc in the body?

The German nutrition society (DGE) recommends for adult men, about 14 milligrams of zinc per day for a sufficient supply. The organism can store approximately two grams of zinc. “In contrast to other mineral the body zinc storage of materials and is quite small,” said Krehl. Therefore, it is important that zinc is constantly about the food.

Because zinc is involved in many processes in the body, a deficiency in various areas. “A slight zinc deficiency may experience hair loss, reduced Taste and appetite to lead,” said Krehl. A severe deficiency can also cause an increased susceptibility to infections and disorders in the nervous system.

A zinc deficiency occurs in Germany only very rarely

A zinc shortage is in Germany, however, very rare. Thus, the National consumption study II in the year 2008 showed, for example, that all age groups in Germany to achieve just the value that is recommended by the DGE, but in some cases even exceeded. There is a zinc deficiency, are often chronic diseases in the digestive tract the cause. “As a result, not enough nutrients are absorbed,” said Krehl. Even in high Stress lack of can occur.

Zinc is contained in many foods

Who would like to prevent a zinc deficiency, you should first pay attention once more to his diet. Many foods contain zinc. “In principle, that the recovery from animal foods better than from plant-based,” explains Krehl. In animal foods, the amino acids histidine and cysteine are often included. Promote the absorption of zinc. Particularly high-quality sources of Zinc are therefore meat, some types of fish, hard cheese and eggs.

In plant products, however, contain significantly less zinc. “In addition, substances occur here more frequently, which hinder the absorption of zinc,” said Krehl. This applies, for example, for phytic acid, which is found in whole grain products. “Nevertheless, it is, however, included in whole grain products, and so much zinc that they make a good contribution to cover the demand,” said Krehl. (So much water should you actually drink)

Caution: zinc tablets correctly take

How much zinc the body can hold, depends, however, not only of the quantity of Zinc itself. “The crucial factor, other substances that promote zinc absorption, or inhibit” are, white Krehl. Thus, for example, a high intake of calcium through food or especially from food supplements, the zinc absorption.

Those who take zinc tablets as a dietary Supplement, you should make sure that these are not dosed to high. The Federal Institute for risk assessment recommends that a dietary Supplement of a maximum amount of 6.5 milligrams of zinc per day. Zinc tablets work best if you take them at a distance of at least half an hour before meals. Green and black tea may contain to inhibit the recording, similarly, you should combine it with zinc, no supplements, calcium, or iron because these can interfere with the recording. (Also interesting: What is a Detox diet really?)

This article was authored by (Maria Berentzen)

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