Zinc: How to choose the best for you in 2021
Today we are going to talk about an essential mineral for the proper functioning of the immune system: zinc.
As the organism does not produce zinc, external sources are necessary for its supply to occur, among which are supplements.
In the midst of so many options, we will show in this article what you should take into account before buying the ideal Zinc according to your needs.
First, the most important
- Zinc helps to maintain the good health of adults, in addition to gaining muscle mass, and also acts in the growth of children.
- Unnecessary or excessive supplementation, however, is harmful to health.
- We will show you what are the characteristics that differentiate one supplement from another and how to choose the ideal zinc.
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Ranking: The 4 best types of Zinc supplement
Those who need to restore zinc values, look for the ideal amount and dose according to their needs. Knowing this, manufacturers have invested in varied options for all situations.
Therefore, below, we will introduce you to the best types of zinc supplement available on the market today.
Choosing the ideal zinc supplement is not as simple as it sounds. As it is a nutrient, you need to be aware of the dosage and the need to include supplementation in your diet.
For this reason, we have created this Buying Guide with all the information you will need to make the best decision when purchasing zinc.
What is zinc?
Zinc is an essential mineral for our body. About 100 different enzymes need it to be able to catalyze chemical reactions that maintain cellular functions.
Zinc plays an important role in our immunization.
Therefore, zinc, in addition to playing an important role in our immunization, also helps the body to function better.
In addition, this mineral performs functions that contribute to the functioning of metabolism, especially proteins and nucleic acids.
The fact is that zinc acts in our body to protect us from a large number of diseases, in addition to helping to fight others that have already settled in our body.
In addition to contributing to the improvement of health, this mineral is also essential for the growth of children.
But, despite its importance, our organism does not synthesize zinc. Therefore, the element must be acquired through food or supplementation.
What are the consequences of lack of zinc?
The lack of zinc in the diet is a problem that deserves your attention.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), zinc deficiency is linked to many cases of death, as this mineral has an important function in our immune system.
According to the WHO, the population has a moderate consumption of zinc. However, the ideal consumption of this mineral is still below countries like Uruguay, Chile and Venezuela.
The fact is that people who do not consume sufficient amounts of zinc are more likely to suffer from the action of infectious agents.
Therefore, these people become more ill compared to those who have an adequate zinc intake.
In addition to weakening the immune system, the lack of this mineral can have several other consequences, as you can see below:
- Difficulty healing
- Difficulty tasting salty food
- Skin problems (psoriasis)
- Yellow and dry skin
- Loss of hair
- Increased blood glucose levels
- Malfunction of the liver
- Sexual impotence
What is the importance of zinc in child nutrition?
Adequate intake of this mineral is essential for children to grow up healthy. As the immune system of children is more fragile than that of adults, a diet rich in zinc is mandatory.
According to the World Health Organization, one of the biggest causes of infant mortality is diarrhea and pneumonia. And these two problems are directly related to the lack of zinc in the body.
To get an idea of the importance of zinc in children’s food, one of the WHO’s projects to reduce cases of infant mortality is to include zinc supplements in their diet.
Since this measure was adopted in the late 1980s, cases of death from diarrhea worldwide, in children under five, have fallen dramatically.
In addition, according to research conducted by Unicef, zinc supplements for pregnant women can also help a baby gain weight after birth, reducing the risk of infection.
What is the relationship between zinc and good shape?
As zinc is of great importance for cell reproduction and repair, this is reflected in muscle growth after hypertrophy training.
In addition, muscle growth is also positively influenced by the levels of testosterone present in the body. And the fact is that testosterone benefits from the proper concentration of zinc.
Zinc also acts as an antioxidant.
More than that, as zinc also acts as an antioxidant, this mineral protects muscles from free radicals after training.
Thus, zinc favors a faster and more complete recovery of the muscles.
This, consequently, promotes a better performance of the athlete, generating muscle mass gain.
What is the recommended amount of zinc?
The minimum daily intake of zinc varies from person to person. In addition, this amount also depends on your age group and your health condition.
But it is a consensus among experts that, in general, the minimum recommended amount of zinc is 7mg per day for women and 9mg for men, which may vary with age.
For the elderly, for example, this value can rise to 8mg for women and 11mg for men.
The alert, however, is due to the maximum amount of zinc ingested per day that should not be exceeded. The maximum level varies between 40mg and 50mg of zinc daily.
Below, you can check the recommended dosage of Zinc according to age and gender:
A balanced diet can provide the daily amounts of zinc necessary for our bodies to be protected.
Foods rich in zinc are: red meat, poultry, seafood, nuts, cereals, beans and eggs. Among the main rich products that most contain this nutrient are oysters.
However, in some cases, only a zinc-rich diet cannot provide the body with the ideal amount of the mineral.
In any case, foods containing zinc must be included in your diet as a supplement.
To give you an idea of the amount of zinc present in food, check out the table below with the main ones:
Who should supplement with zinc?
As we have seen, tests and medical follow-up are necessary to determine whether there is a need for supplementation with Zinc. Still, there are some cases where this mineral is almost always needed.
In general, it is the case of people who, due to a health condition, have difficulty absorbing the nutrient through food.
We can cite as an example people who suffer from enteropathic acrodermatitis, characterized by difficulty in absorbing zinc from the intestine.
Those who have difficulty absorbing the nutrient, or who have diseases that cause this inefficiency, need zinc supplementation.
In addition, people with diabetes, eating disorders, intestinal and kidney disease may also need zinc supplements to make up for the lack of absorption.
Vegetarians and vegans, for example, who also have limited access to sources of zinc, generally need to supplement their diet.
Pregnant women, nursing mothers and the elderly also usually need a higher concentration of zinc and, therefore, end up benefiting from supplementation.
What are the effects of excess zinc?
Even though this mineral is essential for our organism, consuming it in excess can be bad for our health.
The fact is that if you consume more than the recommended amount, it will cause a high level of zinc in the bloodstream. The consequence is that the amount of copper will decrease.
That is, the excess of zinc causes the deficiency of copper, which is another essential mineral for our body.
And copper deficiency can result, among other problems, in osteoporosis and neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
In addition to the decrease in other minerals in the body, excess zinc in the body can result in:
- Reduction of good cholesterol (HDL)
- Changes in urinary function
- Loss of appetite
- Abdominal cramps
- Frequent vomiting.
Therefore, before taking supplements, it is necessary to know if they are really necessary and what is the recommended dose.
What are the advantages of zinc?
The advantages of zinc are numerous. This mineral is important for protecting the body against viruses, bacteria and fungi.
Zinc also has antioxidant action, which helps to decrease the amount of free radicals in our body.
The fact is that the functions of zinc contribute not only to good health in general, but also to the reproductive health and fertility of men and women. In addition, adequate levels of the mineral favor the gain of muscle mass.
Another advantage is that this mineral helps in the healing process and in combating premature aging.
Not to mention that zinc is also essential for the growth of children and the health of pregnant women and babies. As a disadvantage, there is its overuse or if there is no real need.
The result, as we have seen, can range from uncomfortable side effects to the deficiency of other minerals essential for the proper functioning of the body.
The following are the main advantages and disadvantages of Zinc:
- Strengthens the immune system
- Acts as an antioxidant
- Protects against disease
- Acts on children’s growth
- Assists in the healing process
- Good for fertility of men and women
- Fight aging
- Assists in muscle mass gain
- Excess causes side effects and decreases copper and iron
How much does zinc cost?
The price of the zinc supplement varies widely depending on the manufacturer’s brand, quantity and dosage. In general, you will find zinc costing between R $ 20 and R $ 300.
But you don’t have to buy the most expensive one. In general, the most expensive supplements are combined with other vitamins and are also for prolonged use.
Where to buy zinc?
You will find zinc for sale in pharmacies, supplement stores, department stores and hypermarkets.
But our recommendation is that you make your purchase in online stores like Amazon.
This is because, when buying online, you will have a greater variety of price and brands in addition to, of course, purchasing your supplement in a simple and practical way from the comfort of your home.
Purchase Criteria: What to take into account when choosing zinc
After making sure of the need for supplementation, and with the supervision of your doctor, you will have to choose the best product on the market.
To do this, you need to understand what really differentiates one supplement from another. Therefore, we have listed for you the main factors that must be observed before purchasing zinc:
In the following, we will explain each of these factors for you to invest in the ideal zinc.
Zinc is not easily absorbed into the body unless it is attached to another substance.
For this reason, many zinc manufacturers add some organic and amino acids to their composition, thus forming chelated zinc. But supplemental zinc is also available in inorganic and not chelated form.
Below are the main types of zinc that you will find on the market:
- Chelated zinc: this type has gone through a process called chelation, which increases the concentration of the mineral and, in theory, helps the body to better absorb the mineral.
- Zinc Gluconate: one of the most popular types. However, gluconate supplements are just a chemical substitute for real zinc. That is, the body absorbs very little in this processed way.
- Zinc oxide: this type is an inorganic, non-chelated form of zinc.
- Zinc Sulphate: soluble in water and not chelated, this is an inorganic type of the mineral.
We recommend that you talk to your doctor so that together they choose the best option according to your needs.
Another factor that you should check before buying zinc is the composition of the product. Here you can choose between two versions: pure zinc, with no other ingredients in its composition; or the mineral combined with other vitamins and nutrients.
It is not uncommon to find more options of vitamin supplements in which zinc is combined with calcium, vitamin D, magnesium, among others.
To find out which option is right for you, it is worth checking your nutritional needs for replacement of the other vitamins.
Also, consider how the supplement should be taken. In general, the most common forms found for sale are those in capsules or in liquid form.
Here you must evaluate the practicality of the consumed and the power and ease of absorption in your body.
Generally, children and the elderly take more advantage of the liquid form, in drops. This is because the pills can make it difficult to swallow and digest the mineral.
One of the most important factors that you should check is the dose of the zinc supplement. This value varies from product to product and must meet the prescription made by your medium.
But, for you to have an idea, in the market you will find zinc with dosages that vary between 7mg and 50mg, in each tablet.
Finally, we recommend that you observe the amount, either capsules or milliliters.
By choosing the exact amount you will consume, you not only invest your money better, but also avoid possible waste if you do not need to use everything.
In the market, you will find zinc in packages containing between 30 and 180 capsules. In the case of the mineral in its liquid form, the amount varies between 20ml and 100ml.
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