Are Your Children Getting Enough Z’s?

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March 14, 2013 by thehealthyheartcenter

ZINC! A mineral that although may be essential, is often overlooked. Both girls, and boys fall short in consuming enough foods rich in zinc, which is integral to normal growth and development. A diet deficient in zinc can have adverse effects on the body such as weakening immunity, and causing a longer recovery from minor cuts. It is recommended that boys meet a requirement of 15 milligrams a day, while girls should be meeting 12 milligrams, however only 2 in 3 teenage boys, and 3 in 4 teenage girls do.

 

Although it is easy to meet requirements through a multivitamin, there are many food sources of zinc that should be included in the diet. Lean red meats, chicken, and fish are ideal sources; however, much of the zinc in breads, fruits, and vegetables, are not always fully absorbed, which is why vegetarians are typically prone to a zinc deficiency.

 

Best Food Sources of Zinc:

  • Meats: lean beef, pork, liver
  • Dairy products: nonfat dry milk, cheese
  • Poultry: chicken, turkey
  • Eggs
  • Shellfish: particularly oysters.
  • Seeds: pumpkin, sunflower, squash, watermelon, lentils.
  • Nuts: peanuts, pecans, Brazil nuts, pine nuts.
  • Yeast-leavened whole-wheat breads and bread products.
  • Wheat germ, whole-grain cereals.
  • Dry beans.

 

Source: healthychildren.org
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Authors

Dr. Wali Gauvin

Kendra Fink RD CPT

Jessica Griffin: Intern

Julianna Yi: Intern

Marielle Mangano: Intern

Jackie Page: Intern

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