The Benefits of Zinc For Your Health
The mineral zinc plays an important role in producing cells that help us
stay healthy. Zinc helps to boost the immune system, creates new skin cells,
encourages healing, and helps protect against vision loss. Although moderate
doses of zinc can enhance immunity, high doses can actually depress it and
should be avoided. In general, Dr. Weil recommends 15 mg of zinc daily for
most of us - or up to 30 mg daily if you follow a vegetarian diet, or simply
don.t eat many foods of animal origin (vegetables and fruits provide very
little). The best plant sources of zinc are legumes (dried beans, garbanzos,
black-eyed peas, lentils, and peas), soy products and whole grains. Red meat
and cooked oysters are good animal sources. Some dairy products and foods
high in calcium can decrease zinc absorption, while protein-rich foods can
enhance it. Because copper can be depleted when taking zinc supplements, Dr.
Weil recommends a multivitamin supplement that includes both zinc and
copper, taken with a meal to avoid stomach upset.