Posted on Apr 01, 2020, 6 p.m.
We are hearing a lot about zinc in the news lately, and that is because it is an important mineral. Back in 2010 a study published in PLoS Pathogens found ionic zinc was an inhibitor of coronavirus by preventing its replication and spread.
Zinc is essential for good health, it helps to metabolize nutrients, maintain the immune system, as well as growing and repairing body tissues. The body does not store zinc so it is important to meet the daily requirements: men 11 mg a day, women 8 mg but 11 while pregnant and 12 while breastfeeding.
In vitro cellular testing found that zinc was helpful in preventing a variety of RNA viruses which included poliovirus and influenza; somehow it interfered with the way the viruses process polyproteins which prevented them from doing damage.
Other research published in the British Medical Journal identified zinc as a possible treatment against SARS, which is also a type of coronavirus. Zinc ions were found to provide protection against this virus by preventing their attachment to cell surfaces.
“Over the past 30 years, researchers have demonstrated the critical role of zinc in diverse physiological processes, such as growth and development, maintenance and priming of the immune system, and tissue repair,” this authors explain.
“Direct antiviral effects of zinc ions have been demonstrated against rhinoviruses responsible for the common cold (1,2,3,4,5) … (and) [z]inc has also been shown to directly decrease the incidence of respiratory infections in young children from developing countries probably by mechanisms that involve restoration of T-cell immunity lost as a result of deficiency of this mineral.”
Incorporating zinc into your diet can be done through supplements, but the more natural approach is through diet as there are plenty of foods that contain high amounts of zinc.
- Oysters contain about 16.6 milligrams of zinc per 100 grams
- Hemp seed contain about 9.9 mg per 100 grams
- Sesame seeds contain about 7.8 mg per 100 grams
- Pumpkin seeds contain about 7.64 mg per 100 g
- Cacao powder contains about 6-7 mg per 100 g
- Grass fed beef contains about 5 mg of zinc per 100 grams
- Alaskan crab contains 7.6 mg per 100 g
- 100 grams of legumes contain about 12% of the daily recommended value
- Cashews contain about 15% of the DRV per one ounce serving
- Cheddar cheese contains about 28% of the DRV per 100 grams
- One cup of full fat milk contains about 9% of the DRV
- Shrimp and mussels contain about 14% of teh DRV per 100 grams
- One large egg contains about 5% of the DRV
- One large regular or sweet potato contains 9% of the DRV for zinc
- Green beans contain about 3% of the DRV per 100 grams
- Dark chocolate contains about 3.3 mg or 30% of the DRV of zinc per 100 grams
If you are worried that you are not getting enough zinc speak to your physician or certified medical professional. Zinc is an essential mineral, eating enough is important to maintaining good health and the best way to do that is to ensure that you are eating a healthy diet with a variety of good choices such as seeds, nuts, and legumes.
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