Why is Zinc important in your diet?

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Not so long ago I wrote an article about the top vegetarian sources of zinc… but why is zinc important in your diet? 

Zinc is often overlooked when it comes to diet issues. It’s nowhere near on the same level of “hype” as, say, protein: when you tell people you’re vegetarian / vegan you don’t often hear “but where will you get your zinc?!”.. It is, however, still a super important part of your diet. Here’s the low down on why…

The role of zinc in your body…

Zinc is an essential part of an enormous amount of bodily functions. It is essential for things such as metabolism, cell division and growth (especially during pregnancy!).
It helps your body with healing wounds and repairing damaged tissue, as well as being needed for the senses of taste and smell. Pretty awesome eh?

What zinc deficiency can lead to…

This depends on the severity but you can get issues such as diarrhoea, anorexia or lethargy. You can also be more susceptible to infections and have a lowered immune function. In very severe cases you can also develop alopecia, dermatitis, impaired wound healing, intellectual disability and even impotence!! There’s a lot more issues that can develop as a result of zinc deficiency, but these are the main ones.

Am I at risk of deficiency?

Some of the most at risk people are: pregnant women, vegetarians, people who have a lot of iron in their diets, people with diabetes and people who consume large amounts of alcohol! If you fall in to these categories, make sure you increase your zinc intake!

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Fresher Beauty Editor and Manager. 22 year old health and fitness enthusiast. Instagram: @annarozanska

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