Zinc is essential for most body systems' functioning such as the immune system, thyroid function, wound healing, and blood clotting.
In this topic, we are going to explain some of the common signs of zinc deficiency in females.
Signs of zinc deficiency in females
Signs of zinc deficiency mostly appear in females because of many factors like pregnancy, breastfeeding, and hormonal changes over age.
The signs of zinc deficiency in females are:
1-Loss of appetite and weight loss
The main index for signs of zinc deficiency in females is loss of appetite.
Zinc deficiency affects appetite by affecting the ghrelin hormone.
Ghrelin is called the hunger hormone as it stimulates appetite, enhances food intake, and improves fat storage.
Weight loss is also another main indicator for signs of zinc deficiency in females due to decreased food intake and fat storage in the body.
2-Weak immune system
Low amounts of zinc affect the immune system negatively.
So the ability of the body to defeat any microbe decreases and the period of diseases continues for a longer time.
3-Decreased ability to heal wounds
Zinc helps the skin repair after wounds and improves the synthesis of skin proteins and collagen.
So any zinc deficiency leads to a diminished ability to heal any wound.
It's a common sign of zinc deficiency in females because of malabsorption.
Hair loss is one of the most common signs of zinc deficiency in females.
Zinc intake either dietary or supplementary may be enough for healing hair loss.
Hypogonadism is an affection for the function of the reproductive system.
Severe zinc deficiency may cause a delay in the property of females.
7-Decreased taste and smell sensations
Zinc deficiency may affect taste and smell sensations.
Older females who suffer from zinc deficiency, mostly experience decreased or loss of taste and smell.
8-Blurring of vision
The females who have zinc deficiency could experience blurred vision and squint because zinc is found in the eyes in high amounts.
One of the signs of zinc deficiency in females is the delay of the growth and development of and the delay of their properties.
Zinc is very important for cognitive functions and its deficiency may lead to memory problems, hazy thinking, and other cognitive problems.
11-Altered blood sugar
Zinc controls blood sugar levels and helps in the production of insulin.
So any drop in zinc levels leads to low insulin levels and alteration of blood sugar levels.
Zinc is important for the storage of histamine and so zinc deficiency causes elevated levels of histamine.
That leads to increased symptoms of allergies such as runny nose or sneezing.
Also, it increases the sensitivity of any allergic reactions.
13-Acne and skin rash
Common signs of zinc deficiency in females are acne formation and the development of skin rash.
Common foods rich in zinc
Many foods contain zinc but it's better absorbed from animal-source zinc.
So people who are vegetarians or who have a restricted diet can experience zinc deficiency more than others.
Some external foods supply us with efficient amounts of zinc.
Meat is a tremendous source of zinc, particularly red meat.
Raw ground beef may give your body an efficient daily amount of zinc more than processed meat.
It is a healthy rich source of zinc, especially oysters.
Oysters contain a huge amount of zinc more than other shellfish but they also still have a good amount of zinc.
It is considered the most food high in zinc ever.
The other shellfish like shrimps and crabs have a good source of zinc.
If you have shellfish in your meal once or twice a week, you rarely experience any signs of zinc deficiency.
Legumes such as beans, lentils, and chickpeas contain a high amount of zinc.
Legumes also contain phytates which reduce the absorption of zinc.
Heating or processing legumes is important to enhance the bioavailability of zinc.
Nuts such as peanuts, cashews, and almonds are very healthy snacks that have high amounts of zinc.
Nuts also provide our bodies with other essential nutrients and minerals.
They are very important for the body as they decrease the incidence of some diseases like cancer or heart disease, and also enhance the longevity of life.
Of course, we all know that dairy products must be an essential component of our meals because of their huge benefits.
One of these benefits is that they are high in zinc, especially milk and cheese.
Our body absorbs the zinc in dairy very well.
Dairy products also have some other elements that are important for our bones such as calcium, vitamin D, and protein.
Eggs contain a high amount of zinc and other important vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B, selenium, and choline.
Seeds such as pumpkins, sesame, and hemp have a sufficient amount of zinc.
They also contain healthy fats, fibers, and other vitamins and minerals.
Some vegetables contain moderate amounts of zinc such as potatoes and sweet potatoes.
In general, vegetables are not the best source of zinc but they can suffice the daily intake of zinc.
Whole grains such as rice, oats, and wheat may provide the body with some zinc but they also contain phytates which hamper zinc absorption.
It contains an accepted amount of zinc but also has more calories and sugar.
So it is better not to depend on dark chocolate as a primary source of zinc.
Mild deficiency of zinc may be treated by just increasing food rich in zinc.
Other moderate and severe cases can get zinc supplements with proper doses to avoid the signs of zinc deficiency and also avoid excess doses.
There are many signs of zinc deficiency in females which may be represented by weight and hair loss, diabetes, blurred vision, and weak immunity.
And other signs that tell us about the various benefits of zinc and the necessity of zinc in our food.