A deficiency in Zinc may lead to a wide variety of illnesses. Zinc creates a defense against infection-causing bacteria and viruses trying to enter the body and stops bacterial and viral replication.
Zinc aids in the proper assimilation of vitamins, normal growth and development, maintenance of body tissues with a focus on the strength of the immune system as well as the synthesis of DNA, and helps reduce healing time. It is anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and is found in all the body fluids, including the moisture in the eyes, lungs, nose, urine, and saliva.
Zinc is also an anti-oxidant and must be in proper balance to assist some 25 enzymes in various functions involving digestion, metabolism, and reproduction.
Zinc, an essential trace mineral naturally present in some foods, is involved in a multitude of body functions including immune function, digestion, protein synthesis, wound healing, skin health, and reducing stress levels. Zinc also supports normal growth and development during pregnancy, childhood, and adolescence, and is required for proper sense of taste and smell. Because the body has no specialized zinc storage system, a daily intake of zinc is required to maintain a steady state.
Research has tied zinc deficiency to diabetes, Alzheimer's, cognitive impairment, atherosclerosis, neurological disorders, autoimmune diseases, age-related degenerative diseases, and Wilson's disease. Many researchers believe zinc is linked to so many chronic diseases because it plays such a crucial role in immune function and healthy cell growth. A lack of zinc can increase oxidative stress and inflammation, both of which have been strongly associated with chronic disease.