Zinc is an essential trace element that your body needs in order to function properly. When you think about this metal, you likely think of it as a cold remedy, but it can be used for much more. The element is vital to help reduce inflammation, reverse heart disease, and promote healthy cell division while protecting against damage from free radicals. Many people don’t realize they have a zinc deficiency, and that it can put them at risk for many diseases such as diabetes and infertility. Here are a few more health benefits that come from consuming zinc.
Strengthens Immune System
Zinc is commonly taken as an over-the-counter remedy for colds, and with good reason. While it may not work right away, if you consume zinc for five months you will reduce your risk of contracting a cold. Additionally, if you do get sick, you will likely find yourself over the cold much quicker. This is because zinc can interfere with the process that causes bacteria to back up in the nasal passages, so it has an antiviral effect by blocking bacteria. These same properties allow zinc to build up the immune system helping to present and treat more diseases than just colds.
Promotes Muscle Growth and Repair
Those who work out on a regular basis will find that zinc is their best friend because it helps to promote muscle growth and repair. Zinc has a major role in cell growth and division, therefore, when it comes to repairing muscle tissue zinc is very important. The essential element also plays a large role in releasing testosterone, IGF-1, and growth hormone; all of which are vital in building muscle mass and promoting a healthy metabolism. The effects of zinc on the body are even more evident following HIIT workouts and weight-training.
Powerful Antioxidant that May Fight Cancer
Zinc is a well-known antioxidant and anti-inflammatory. As such it can fight oxidative stress in the body which in turn helps to reduce the chance of disease developing. One of these diseases may be cancer. In fact, studies have shown that in elderly patients supplementing zinc can help prevent cancerous cells from mutating and can even stunt tumor growth. It is possible that these effects would also translate into those fighting cancer at a younger age due to the positive effects it has on oxidative stress.
One of the hormones that zinc can help balance within the body is insulin, most commonly known as a problem for diabetes. When the body is not able to regulate insulin properly, then diabetes occurs. Zinc can bind to insulin allowing it to be properly stored and then released into the bloodstream. The result is that insulin becomes balanced in the body again helping to cure the side effect of bouncing sugar that occurs when diabetes is present. While it is not a complete cure, it certainly is an effective treatment for some people.
If you are one of the thousands of people that suffer from the embarrassment that comes with chronic diarrhea, then it may be time to look into zinc treatment. Zinc deficiency has been linked to many digestive problems that include chronic diarrhea as a symptom. If you suffer from diarrhea on a regular basis, then consider getting your zinc levels tested to see if you need to supplement. Supplementing with zinc can actually cure diarrhea and treat some digestive diseases.
Balances Hormones in the Body
Insulin is not the only hormone that zinc can balance, it can also help to balance hormone production helping to correct problems with fertility and health. Zinc is a great way to naturally increase testosterone which has large roles for both women and men in fertility. Also, zinc helps to balance estrogen in the body which can cause mood swings, menstrual problems, and even an increased risk for certain cancers in some women. Therefore, it is vital to ensure that you get enough zinc in your diet or consider supplementing.
When it comes to balancing hormones, zinc can play a large role in addressing infertility in men. This is because it is responsible for modulating testosterone levels in men. Men who do not have enough zinc in their diet do not have enough testosterone concentrations stored in the body which leads to lower libido and infertility. The good news is that zinc supplementation can quickly turn this situation around and help men produce fertile semen once again. Zinc is also important for treating infertility in women since their eggs will not mature properly without the right levels of zinc in the blood.
Supports Blood Vessels
Zinc helps keep the blood cells in the cardiovascular system healthy by lowering the amount of oxidative stress and inflammation present in the blood vessels. In particular, the layer of cells that line the blood vessels needs to have the proper amount of zinc in order to thrive. Additionally, zinc also supports healthy circulation and therefore can be a natural way to lower blood pressure for those who suffer from hypertension. Since it is found in blood vessels, it can also help to reduce cholesterol levels that occur in damaged arteries.
Supports the Liver
The liver is very important because it filters wastes from the body, but as it ages its exposure to chemicals, medications, and wastes can start to take its toll. Zinc has been shown to help reduce the chance of infection in the liver when supplemented on a regular basis. In addition, zinc can be used to help perform a liver cleanse in order to treat inflammation in the liver and reduce free radicals that may be causing damage. This allows the liver to return to its healthiest state and properly absorb nutrients in the future.
Helps Heal Wounds
If you take a look at the back of most diaper creams, you will find that one of the most common ingredients is zinc. This is because studies have shown that zinc helps to enhance the skins natural regrowth efforts while also treating inflammation at the same time. It can also help prevent any future bacterial growth making it a great choice for treating all types of skin irritations. This is why zinc-based creams are commonly used on people with chronic wounds, ulcers, or burns.