There are many natural treatments to boost your immune system and fight off infections – viruses and bacteria. You can even find some of these remedies in your very own kitchen! We are going to be posting different immune boosters to help keep your family healthy in the days and months to come. Most of these treatments haven’t been discussed in the news but deserve to be! Zinc is just one of the many great natural immune supports.
Please know Dr. Katie and Dr. Julia are available for virtual video and phone visits right now and would love to help you and your family with any health concerns.
Today we are going to talk about zinc! I think about immune function first with zinc. I also think about zinc in children, elderly, and pregnant or breastfeeding moms as these populations are more likely to have low zinc levels.
The body does not store very much zinc. Most of it is not readily available which is why taking a supplement can be critical.
Zinc is a mineral like iron, calcium, magnesium, and copper. When taking a mineral in supplement form, it is important to think about dosage and timing, because they can compete with each other for absorption. Zinc can be taken daily in lower doses and slightly higher with an acute infection.
Vitamin C helps with absorption of zinc and iron. Studies show that people experience less symptoms and recover more quickly when taking zinc and vitamin C together. Zinc and iron on the other hand compete for absorption so they should be taken separately.
Benefits of zinc
- Reduces inflammation
- Reduces the risk of pneumonia and the common cold
- Decreases rates of respiratory tract infections
- Associated with taste and smell – low levels related to loss of taste and smell
- Especially beneficial for children and the elderly as they are often deficient
- Sperm production and testosterone metabolism
- Reduces pregnancy complications
- Burn and wound healing
Foods high in zinc
- Sunflower and pumpkin seeds
- Red meat
- Chicken and pork
- Whole grains
I hope you learned something about zinc today and will begin to include it in your diet and supplements if you weren’t already. If you would like see what zinc supplement Dr. Katie recommends and how to purchase it you can click here.
Dr. Katie is a Naturopathic Doctor practicing in Edina and Woodbury, MN. She specializes in natural treatments that address the root cause of disease. We offer 15 minute consultations by phone. You can schedule online.