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Why Zinc-Rich Food Is Important To Boost Immunity & Prevent Corona Infection?

24 July, 2020 Kratika Saxena

Zinc an essential mineral for the human body

With no vaccine for the coronavirus insight, doctors and scientists around the world are trying their best to create a vaccine that can cure this disease. Scientists and healthcare professionals from prominent medical institutes have been emphasizing the importance of an optimally functioning immune system to safeguard against the disease.

While no such miracle food has been found as yet that can prevent the virus, there are still a few things we can do to protect our body against the coronavirus. One of the best ways to protect against the infection is to strengthen our immunity with food and apart from this also following some basic practices of maintaining social distancing, sanitizing, and wearing a mask. Zinc-rich foods play an important role in boosting immunity and preventing infections.

What is Zinc deficiency?

A deficiency of zinc in the body can lead to symptoms including unexplained weight loss, weakened immunity, lack of alertness, loss of appetite, open pores on the skin, and a decreased sense of smell and taste. People who are lacking this mineral in their bodies are at increased risk of getting any infection. So, it is advised to include as many zinc-containing foods in your diet as you can. Notably, your body cannot produce zinc on its own.

According to a recent study, zinc can potentially inhibit COVID-19 by blocking a significant enzyme. In various previous studies, zinc was found to have immuno-nutrient properties and work against viral infections. 

This makes zinc, an important nutrient to have during the pandemic as it can help in the growth and development of immune cells. It can also help in their communication and play a significant role in the inflammatory response.

How can Zinc-rich food help against Corona infections?

Zinc is an essential micronutrient that regulates cell health, boosts immunity, and survival. Clinical nutritionist and dietician. Zinc is proven to be effective at slowing the rate that similar viruses such as SARS and common cold replicate in the body.

It is associated with many biological functions in the human body and involves multiple cellular processes. Zinc is vital for more than 300 enzymes in the body, and also plays a role in protein synthesis, wound healing, DNA synthesis, cell division and is required for proper sense of taste and smell. The adult body contains 2-3 grams of zinc. A daily intake of up to 15 mg of zinc is needed to maintain a steady-state as there is no specific zinc storage system in the body.

List of summer-friendly zinc-rich food you should consume!

A drugstore online in India 3MEDS  provides you a list of zinc-rich foods that everyone should have in their kitchen. You can easily incorporate them into your kitchen and diet to fulfill your recommended daily allowance of Zinc.

Soybeans- 30 grams of soybeans provide 1.2 mg of Zinc

Cereals- 30 grams of cereals like wheat contributes 0.5 mg. 1 cup of raw oats can have as much as 2.95 mg and cooked brown rice 1.38 mg.

Dals & Pulses- 30 grams of lentils provide 1 mg. Other legumes like chickpeas and beans are also a good source.

Zinc and immune system

In fact, research published by the National Library of Medicine in 2019 indicates that the consumption of zinc in India has been decreasing over the years and now the situation has become worrisome. With the advent of COVID-19, it has become more important to consume zinc to strengthen the immune system.

Zinc supports the production and maturation of white blood cells, which are the major players in the immune system. Severe zinc deficiency depresses immune function in the body. The body requires a good amount of zinc to develop and activate T-lymphocytes, which is a part of the immune system, develops from stem cells in the bone marrow; helps protect the body from infection. Lymphocytes are white blood cells, one of the body’s main types of immune cells.

Individuals with low zinc levels have reduced lymphocyte proliferation. The alterations in immune function explain the association of low zinc status with increased susceptibility to pneumonia and other diseases, and zinc-deficient person experiences increased susceptibility to a variety of infections. Awareness should be increased on the use of zinc in boosting immunity.

Summary

Take zinc supplements, but follow with the directions mentioned on the product label-

Too much of consumption of zinc can make you sick can actually lower your immune response. Zinc can be taken with supplements, particularly copper and medicines.  

Last but not least always take a prescription (medicine or supplement) from your doctor for the consumption of any kind of mineral or vitamin. Best online pharmacy in India is happy to serve you in your medications.