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You may be suffering for decades from zinc deficiency and wouldn't even know it. That is the irony. Most people get less zinc than their body requires and the numbers of such people are on the rise. It is almost like an epidemic. 1 in every 3 person is zinc deficient.

zinc deficiency

If you are a vegetarian or a person above the age of 60, then your risks are higher. There are two main reasons for that. One is that both the categories of people eat plant based proteins which are low in the zinc contents. Although people who are not vegetarian but above the age of 60 may still be eating animal proteins which are high in zinc contents, they may still not be getting enough.

The second reason for the vegetarians to have higher risk is because of the way plant based zinc behaves in the body. The main plant based sources of zinc are whole grains and legumes. Both these plant proteins also contain phytates that bind zinc. This bond makes it harder for your body to absorb zinc.

Another challenge is that there are no real diagnostic methods to test zinc deficiency in normal routine. The most common method to test zinc is to find out serum zinc levels, which really does not represent the actual state of the zinc in the body. Blood contains only insignificantly low amount as the zinc mostly stays in the muscles and the bone tissues.

Zinc Deficiency Symptoms

Like magnesium zinc is also an essential important trace metal. Its deficiency can cause

  • hormone imbalances
  • brain fog
  • loss of taste and smell
  • digestion problems
  • hair growth problems
  • skin problems
  • absorption difficulties of other nutrients
  • delay wound healing
  • immune system malfunctioning
  • DNA synthesis problems
  • difficulties in pregnancy
  • eye problems
  • memory loss

Although all the above symptoms of zinc deficiency may exist, it may still not be confirmed by any means. Other conditions can cause most of these symptoms. There is unfortunately no specific diagnostic test that can determine the zinc deficiency.

So when your suspect low zinc the best thing is to begin to take zinc supplement under medical supervision. Your doctor will be the right guide. Eat more zinc rich foods such as animal proteins.