Trace elements: the health benefits of zinc, where to find it in the diet

The trace elements ensure the maintenance of the balance and the general functioning of the metabolism inside the body. They are involved in the development of many physiological reactions. the zinc is for example present in the metabolism of polyunsaturated fatty acids and some enzymes.

The roles of trace elements in the body

The trace elements play indispensable roles in the metabolism of proteins, fats and sugars. They are essential elements for health, because they participate in many regulatory mechanisms. Their intervention in the functioning of the immune system is also fundamental. It takes place via the mobilization of a substance called thymulin. The trace element intakes must therefore respect stable nutritional doses, in order to avoid a possible deficiency. Insufficient content of zinc disorder of many functions and can cause different pathologies. It results in an aggravation of pneumonia or diarrhoea.

Zinc: role in regulation and maintenance of physiological balance

The adoption of a diet rich in minerals makes it possible to ensure an adequate intake of zinc in the organism. This trace element intervenes at the level of cells and tissues to play an activating or regulating role.

The regulatory roles of zinc in the body

The regulatory role of zinc relates to many physiological functions, including the strengthening of the immune system. It intervenes in cells as an immunostimulant. Its regulation at the level of enzymatic systems contributes to the maintenance of physiological balance. Zinc is an essential component of the active site of many enzymes. Sometimes it acts as a cofactor in the regulation of certain “zinc-dependent” enzymes.

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Balance factor and catalyst of physiological functions

Due to its multiple roles, zinc helps maintain the body’s physiological balance. This trace element participates in the functioning of more than 70 protein enzymes. We can mention some of them, aminopeptidases, alkaline phosphatase, carbonic anhydrase, lactate dehydrogenase, glutamate dehydrogenase, RNA and DNA polymerases.

The actions of zinc also influence hormonal functions, namely insulin, thymulin, prolactin, gustine and testosterone. Growth hormone also requires zinc to work effectively. This trace element is essential in maintaining the physiological balance, by intervening in the functions of growth, immunity, healing and fertility.

Zinc deficiency and its consequences

The benefits of zinc on the organism are therefore real and multiple. We mainly find this trace element in food. The nutritional intake of zinc is around 9.4 mg per day for a diet rich in animal products. It should reach 14 mg per day in the case of a diet based on fruits, vegetables and plant products. However, the recommended intakes differ for children, adolescents, women, pregnant women and men.

Cheeses, meats, seafood and organ meats remain the foods with the best zinc content. The zinc deficiency, trace element essential, is likely to cause different types of pathologies. Frequently encountered illnesses are colds, acne, brain numbness, depression or fragile hair. Symptoms can be mild or moderate, depending on the level of deficiency.


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