September 5, 2011

Happy Labor Day! The emphasis of today should be on work ethic and work ethics. Teach your children the value of a hard days work and how to do it honorably. Especially poignant in these times.

Minerals again -

Zinc - What is it? Why should we care so much about it?

Zinc is a metallic mineral found in the earth in abundance. It is on our wonderful periodic table of elements at #30. It turns out that it is immensely important to our human health.

Over the past 4 years we have been assessing children's metabolic states and other than iron, zinc is the most deficient mineral. Zinc is a major cofactor in more than 100 enzyme reactions throughout our bodies. We are especially reliant on zinc for our immune function, gut function, brain function, gene expression and skin integrity.

For years, we assumed that if you were not severely deficient in zinc, that you were ok. Wrong. We now know that like vitamin D and many other minerals and vitamins we are in trouble at previously perceived normal levels. Insufficiency is currently the rule for when to worry.

For Zinc - here are the symptoms to worry about:

1) Recurrent infections including bacterial infections and viral illnesses. My red flag goes up when I hear a parent say, "my son is sick all the time".

2) Unexplained chronic diaper or other skin rashes.

3) Chronic intermittent diarrhea and irritable bowel symptoms.

4) Macular degeneration

People at risk for insufficiency: vegetarians, pregnant women, junk food diet children, people who take Iron supplementation and people with gut malabsorption issues.

See the link for dietary sources of zinc.

My take home point today: Find that extra zinc.

Heavy metal is good,

Dr. Magryta