>Trace Elements and Foods: Zinc

Today I will spend some time on Zinc because many people know the benefits especially related to helping with colds. We all need zinc but in very small amounts. If you are interested in taking it as a supplement, you only need 11 mg for men and 8 mg for women.
Of course, you should try to get your zinc from the foods that you eat.
Good sources: Seafood, especially oysters, meat and eggs. Legumes and whole grains contain zinc but may not always give vegetarians enough zinc.
Food Sources             Quantity              Zinc in mg
Bite size
Shredded wheat          1 cup                      1.5
peas, green                  1 cup                   1.05
oysters                          3 oz                     74.06**
ground beef patty          4 oz                       5.26
baked beans                   1 cup                    5.79
peanut butter                   2 tbs                    0.94
low fat milk                      1 cup                   1.02
cheddar cheese                 1 oz                     0.88

What are some deficiency symptoms that you may see related to Zinc deficiency?

slow growth in children
infertility /delayed sexual maturation
hair loss and dandruff
skin conditions of various kinds
immune deficiencies
behavioral and sleep disturbances
night blindness
impaired sense of taste or smell
white spots on fingernails
impaired wound healing
reduced appetite
reduced sexual drive, including
impotence, low sperm count, infertility

Who might have an inadequate dietary intake of Zinc?

Those on weight reduction diets
Those on diets for food allergies
Strict vegetarians
Restricted protein diets
People who eat meat substitutes ( soy “meat”)
The elderly
Some people have an increased need for zinc because of disease/conditions
Growth spurts
pregnancy and lactation
Taken in part from: Schlenker,D. & Roth, S.  ( 2011)Williams Essentials of Nutrition and Diet Therapy.St Louis MO. Elsvier-Mosby