Vegetarian Sources of getting Zinc
What is Zinc?
Zinc is an essential element which the body requires for the normal functioning. It is not being produced by the body, so we need to take it via food or supplement. It is present in all the body tissues; muscles, bones, skin. Zinc helps in healing the wound, boosting the immunity, it aids in thyroid functioning and recommended when your digestive systems weakens. It is required by every one of us, in different amount depending on the age. Daily requirements of the zinc will be discussed later.
Reasons for deficiency of Zinc :
- When your body lacks essential nutrients in your system, it will affect the absorption of zinc and will make you deficit of zinc.
- Intake of excessive alcohol and smoke will definitely affect your zinc level in your system.
- If your body is exposed to toxins for a longer time, presence of toxins will deplete the level of zinc in your body.
- Malabsorption syndrome is a serious syndrome, which hinders your normal growth and development. Because it stops absorption of many nutrients including Zinc, in your body and makes us prone to many other diseases.
- If you are suffering from a chronic disease for longer time, you are liable to be deficient in zinc, other minerals and vitamins.
How to absorb Zinc better?
Like absorption and assimilation of nutrients, depend on the food we consumed, similarly Zinc absorption is also dependent on the food along which we are taking it. Some food hinders its absorption (will discuss below) has to be avoided along with the zinc.
- If your body is Zinc deficient, then the absorption of it will be very fast.
- As phytic acid and phytates resist the absorption of many vital nutrients. They do affect and hinders Zinc absorption.
- Taking zinc with calcium or its supplement too is going to decrease the incorporation of zinc in the body.
- Proteins help in absorption. So taking your zinc diet or a supplement along with proteins is going to help its absorption and assimilation in our biological system.
Why is Zinc essential?
There are many benefits of taking diet which is good in Zinc, as Zinc helps in many body functioning and processing. It keeps the diseases at bay and helps faster recovery.
- Wound Healing: Zinc helps in wound healing and recovering fast from it.
- Cell Growth and Repair: Zinc plays a role in cell division and tissue growth.
- Enzyme Function: Many enzymes require zinc for their catalytic activity.
- Its supplements are taken by patients suffering from diarrhea.
- If you have disturbed gut health, weak digestion, then zinc is deficient in you and you have to consult doctor for its supplements or have zinc rich diet.
- Zinc helps in proper growth and development of a child.
- It helps in absorption of many vital nutrients in our body.
- Your body will be able to fight infections and other minor ailments if you have required zinc in your system.
Requirement of Zinc in our body
Requirement of zinc depends on the age and male/female. Requirements of Zinc for male is slightly more than for women.
Recommended Amount of zinc
Children (age 4 to 8 years)
Children (age 9 to 13years)
Sources of Zinc
There are many sources of this vital nutrient, many foods which are rich in zinc. Some of them are listed below:
- Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds are very nutritious food which everyone should include in our diet. It is rich in magnesium, iron, protein and zinc. It is a super food for your daily intake.
100gm of pumpkin seeds = 10.3mg of zinc
- Sesame Seeds
Sesame seeds also called as til in hindi are healthy food you can have in your diet. It also has zinc in good amount.
100gm of sesame seeds= 10.2mg of zinc
All the seeds are said to be super food, so is the flaxseeds, which has high nutritive value and one of the source of zinc.
100gm of flax seeds =4.3 mg of zinc
For vegans, peanuts is considered as a plant protein, this nut is also a source of zinc in it
100gm of peanuts= 6.6mg of zinc
Tofu is made of soy milk, is the popular replacement of cottage cheese/ paneer for Lactose intolerant. Tofu has zinc in good amount.
100gm of tofu = 4.9mg of zinc
Nuts and seeds are good source of zinc, cashew is also a source of zinc, carbohydrates, magnesium.
100gm of cashews =5.7 mg of Zinc
- Soy Beans
All the beans and lentils is also the source of zinc for vegetarians.
100gm of soy beans = 4.7mg of zinc