With the ongoing pandemic, you may have tried to adopt healthy food habits. This is a great step forward! It is crucial for you to keep the importance of balanced diet in mind and ensure that you eat right. To boost your immune system during this pandemic and stay safe from infections, eating zinc rich foods zinc helps a lot.
Zinc is a mineral that plays an essential role by activating around 100 enzymes in your body. There are several other vital functions of zinc such as:
Unlike proteins, your body cannot store zinc, making it vital that you eat foods high in zinc regularly. Here are a few zinc-rich foods that can help you ward off infections by boosting your immunity.
Legumes like lentils, beans and chickpeas are some zinc-rich foods that can help you reach your daily intake needs. Around 100 grams of cooked legumes contain approximately 12% of the daily recommended intake. But legumes contain phytates that may not allow your body to absorb zinc and other minerals. You can reduce their effects by processing the legumes you eat. You can either soak, ferment, heat, or sprout them to increase your body’s absorption of zinc .
Additional Read: 8 Eats! The Best Food for Strong Immune System that you Need Now!
Cashews are one of the best nuts high in zinc. They offer you a great way to boost your zinc intake as 28 grams contain around 15% of your daily value. Apart from cashews you can also eat peanuts, almonds, or pine nuts. Other than giving you zinc, these nuts also reduce your risk of diseases like cancer, heart conditions and diabetes .
Seeds like hemp, sesame, pumpkin, squash, and flax are also some zinc-rich seeds that you can have. About 30 grams of hemp seeds contain 43% and 31% of the daily recommended intake for women and men respectively. These seeds are also known for health benefits like lowering blood pressure and controlling cholesterol. You can add them into your diet by putting them in salads, yogurts or soups.
If you do not eat meat, adding zinc-rich vegetable and fruits to your diet is a good way to increase your intake. Though most vegetables are a poor source of zinc, potatoes and green beans contain a good amount. The zinc content in potatoes is approximately 1% and in green beans it is approximately 3% of the daily recommended value.
Avocados, pomegranates, guavas, apricots, peaches and blueberries are some zinc-rich fruits that you can include in your diet. One cup of these can provide approximately 12% of the daily recommended intake. Having a diet rich in vegetables and fruits will also reduce your risk of certain chronic conditions.
Oregano is one of the richest sources of zinc when it comes to herbs. It provides around 33% of the daily recommended zinc intake. Thyme and chervil are also some herbs high in zinc. They provide approximately 16 and 12% of the daily intake. Adding herbs to your diet may also help you prevent and manage heart conditions and type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
Additional Read: Here are Top 9 Reasons Why Basil Leaves Are Good For You!
Dark chocolate is a zinc-rich food that also comes with its own benefits and disadvantages. A 100-gram chocolate bar with 70-85% of dark chocolate will give you around 30% of your daily recommended intake of zinc. However, this amount of chocolate also contains 600 calories. So, be mindful about how much you have! Keep in mind that dark chocolate with 50-70% of cocoa may help lower blood pressure, especially in people with hypertension. It can also increase the HDLs and decrease the LDLs present in your body .
Shellfish is not only one of the best sources of zinc, but also has significantly lower calories. Oysters, in particular, are one of the richest sources of zinc. About 6 medium oysters may provide around 290% of the daily recommended intake. Crabs and shrimps may provide 69 and 14% of the recommended intake respectively. Being low in calories and high in protein rich, shellfish also help in promoting the health of your immune system, heart, and brain.
Now that you are familiar with the benefits of zinc-rich foods, do include them in your daily meals. Another way to take zinc is by taking multivitamins like Z Becosules capsules. They contain all essential micronutrients like vitamin C, B complex and zinc.
The best way to go about adding zinc and other immunity boosting foods in your diet is to go for nutrition therapy. For this, you can connect with top nutrition experts on Bajaj Finserv Health. If you are unable to meet them in person, book an online doctor consultation and resolve all your queries from the comfort of your home. This way you can add zinc-rich foods to your diet with the right expert advice!
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