Your body needs Zinc for the production, repair and functioning of DNA. A good supply of zinc during pregnancy is essential for the rapid growth of tissue and DNA in your baby’s body. Zinc is an essential trace mineral found throughout the body, often in conjunction with protein. Zinc is transported in the blood via the protein albumin, so low albumin level often could mean poor absorption of zinc. So, getting enough zinc is important for everyone.
I) ROLE OF ZINC IN PREGNANCY
Below are some biological functions of Zinc during pregnancy, in mother & baby.
- Protein synthesis
- Cellular division & nucleic acid metabolism
- Repair function of DNA
- For rapid growth
- Basic building block of cell
Dietary Sources & Consumption of Zinc
The best sources of Zinc are seafood, meat, seeds, cooked dried beans, peas and lentils. The following image shows the foods which are good sources of zinc and the amount of zinc need to be consumed (Recommended by RDA and WHO).
Consuming sufficient amounts of Zinc may lower the risk of many health related problem. Whether it’s a pregnant lady, or a new mom, or your child, regular intake of zinc in the diet is necessary.
II) ROLE OF ZINC IN GENERAL
Below are some other important functions of zinc in general.
- Wound healing- maintain skin & the mucosal membrane integrity
- Immune function- maintains the function of cells, such as macrophages & neutrophils, active T-lymphocytes
- Synthesis of RHA & DHA
- Essential for optimal senses taste & smell
- Decreases risk of Sickle Cell Anaemia
- Growth & development from gestation through adolescence
III) ROLE OF ZINC IN CHILD HEALTH
Zinc is an important nutrient for everyone, especially for your kids. Deficiency of Zinc often causes diarrhoea in children. Proper intake of Zinc and other nutrients can help you eliminate such health issues.
To avoid the deficiency, people often start taking supplements without doctor’s recommendation to get the benefits of zinc. But, it is always better to talk to your doctor before adding any supplements to your diet, particularly zinc. The doctor may advise against it. Taking proper food sources of zinc in the diet is enough to ensure the good health of your baby and you.
Contributed by – Ms. Savitri (Clinical Nutritionist, Jayanagar)