Zinc (Zn)

The trace mineral zinc takes part in hundreds of enzyme-, hormone-, and metabolic processes in the body. For this reason it is advisable not to be deficient in zinc. Nevertheless, zinc deficiency is a typical modern deficiency syndrome.

Deficiency symptoms
Reduced growth, small genitalia, delayed wound healing, distortion or loss of the senses of smell and taste, diabetes, hyperactivity and behaviour difficulties among children, impotence and sterility in men.

Also irregular menstruation, eczema, acne and other skin diseases, pregnancy stretch marks, joint pain, growing pains, white spots on the fingernails, dark discolouring of the skin, frequent infections, hair loss, scleroderma, aenemia, post-pregnancy depression, failing parental care, congenital malformation, and pica (children).

Symptoms of poisoning
Vomiting, diarrhoea, induces copper deficiency.

RDA: 15 mg. daily.

Therapeutic doses
60-100 mg. daily in the form of chelated zinc. The preferred chelator is picolinic acid (a reconstituted product of nicotinic acid), which is the natural connection for the body's biochemistry. The preferred balance between copper and zinc must not exceed 1:10.
Large single supplements are best utilized if taken in the evening (not in connection with meals).

Richest natural sources
Oysters, fish, seeds, wheat germ, onions, maple syrup, meat, mushrooms, brewer's yeast, milk, whole grain, nuts, peas, carrots, liver, and most vegetables.

Zinc deficiency
One of the most common deficiency syndromes in industrialized nations and the cause of several diseases. Lack of zinc and the failure of the functions mentioned above can lead to problems ranging from mental abilities to symptoms such as lustreless hair and wrinkly skin to predisposition to all infections from common cold to AIDS.

Zinc deficiency is difficult to detect in a laboratory. But since zinc deficiency affects the sense of taste, it is easy to use a simple taste-test to prove zinc deficiency. Use a solution of 0.1% Zinc Sulphate Heptahydrate in 1 litre of distilled water, which equals a 0.1% solution.

Zinc solution or zinc supplements should be taken until the sense of taste is normalized. This can in some cases take a few weeks.

Do make sure, especially in those cases where a number of stress factors are present, to test regularly for relapses after the treatment has stopped.

People who have either an excessive intake of alcohol or are exposed to environmental poisons have a greater need for zinc. The treatment of children over 1 year is the same as that for adults.

The body's zinc tolerance is quite high, even for large quantities. Abuse may lead to nausea and vomiting, but no persistent or serious problems.

Zink is easily absorbed into the body but unfortunately, it is also easily excreted.

Alcohol, infectious diseases, sex, sports that make you sweat a lot, exposure to summer heat or a tropical climate, saunas, sunbaths, sugar and soft drink intakes - and a lot of other factors - tax one's zinc resources and make one more vulnerable and less productive.

The rich, so-called "civilized" Western world is ravaged by a number of diseases which are rare or simply cannot be found in more primitive and less "developed" countries.

When prompted to find a common denominator for all these so-called "civilization diseases", zinc is a possibility.

Our modern civilization diseases all represent a larger or lesser degree of zinc deficiency. Zinc deficiency is the scourge of the industrialized world.

The cause can be found in our modern life style: empty calories, alcohol, additives, pollution, smoking, stress, medicine poisoning, contraceptive pills, diesel- and petrol exhaust gases, heavy metal poisoning, drug abuse, and several other factors which drain our zinc resources round the clock.

Industrially grown grains for bread and vegetables forced by means of fertilizers that are poor in zinc and industrially produced food that are in general low in zinc does not provide us with a sufficient amount of zinc to counter the lack caused by our habits and environmental pollution.

Throughout the last 20 years, biochemical research, especially in the USA, has cleared up these effects and the vast importance of zinc for all life processes.

"Bad nerves", "depression", and the like are phenomena of modern civilization, and they could be connected with zinc deficiency. There is a connection between anorexia, autism, and schizophrenia and zinc deficiency.

Children and youngsters in the growing age or in puberty are often in danger of acquiring zinc deficiency.
When boys have involuntary ejaculations, they often lose considerable amounts of zinc by the semen. At the same time, their growth demands extra zinc. In this period they also tend to eat a lot of sweets and junk food which further depletes the zinc deposits.

The considerable zinc deficiency in contemporary society is further induced by a number of pesticides and other polluting chemicals which are picolinic acid inhibitors and therefore block the administration of zinc. Phytic acid, fibres, phosphates, and EDTA further reduce the absorption of zinc.

The highest concentrations of zinc in the human organism can be found in the prostate gland, in semen, in the eye, and in the muscles, the liver, and the kidneys.