The small intestine is where zinc is absorbed. Zinc absorption from food varies and is influenced by a variety of elements, including food type, the presence of other nutrients (such as iron or calcium), and an individual's general state of health. Only 10 to 30 percent of dietary zinc is typically absorbed.
Following absorption, zinc is distributed throughout the body, with the liver, kidney, pancreas, and brain having the highest concentrations. Urinary excretion of zinc occurs.
Mechanism Of Action
Numerous biochemical processes in the body involve zinc. It affects immune performance, wound healing, and cell division.
Additionally, taste and smell are affected by zinc.
Wilson's disease, a condition in which the body improperly metabolizes copper, is also treated with zinc. Damage to the liver and brain can result from Wilson's disease. Wilson's disease can be prevented or treated by taking zinc supplements, which also help to lower the body's level of copper.
For those with malabsorption syndromes like Crohn's disease, celiac disease, and short bowel syndrome, zinc supplements are also used to prevent and treat zinc deficiency.
Acrodermatitis enteropathica, a condition that causes zinc to be lost through the skin, is also treated with zinc supplements. The symptoms of acrodermatitis enteropathica include diarrhea, hair loss, and skin rashes. Zinc supplements assist in treating or preventing disease by replacing zinc lost through skin as well as manage acrodermatitis
High doses of zinc supplementation can have negative side effects. The most frequent adverse effect is gastrointestinal distress, which can lead to diarrhoea, nausea, and vomiting. Copper deficiency can also be brought on by high zinc dosages. Stop taking zinc and speak with a doctor if you experience any of these side effects.
Pharamacodynamics / Toxicity
Numerous health issues, including growth retardation, skin rashes, hair loss, and diarrhea, can be brought on by a zinc deficiency. Zinc toxicity is uncommon and usually only happens when taking large amounts of zinc supplements. Headaches, diarrhoea, nausea, and vomiting are signs of zinc toxicity.
Certain drugs, including penicillamine, tetracyclines, and quinolone antibiotics, may interact with zinc supplements. These interactions may result in a reduction in zinc absorption or an increase in zinc excretion from the body.
Pregnancy and Lactation
For women who are expecting, zinc is a crucial mineral. It participates in a variety of critical procedures, including wound healing, immune system operation, and cell development and growth. Pregnancy-related zinc deficiency can result in a number of health issues for both the mother and the unborn child.
Use of zinc supplements during pregnancy is not advised unless prescribed by a healthcare professional.
On the use of zinc supplements during lactation, there is no information. Breast milk contains zinc, which is necessary for a baby's healthy growth and development.
Dosage and Administration
For women, the recommended daily allowance (RDA) for zinc is 8 mg, while for men it is 11 mg. For women who are expecting or nursing, the RDA is 11–12 mg per day.
There are numerous forms of zinc supplements, including tablets, capsules, liquids, and powders. Because each form of zinc contains a different amount of the mineral, it is crucial to follow the directions on the packaging.
Supplemental zinc needs to be consumed with food.