I’ve been talking a lot about stomach acid lately but I would be remiss if I didn’t talk about zinc because there is a symbiotic relationship between stomach acid and zinc. If you have a zinc deficiency you may have a HCL deficiency as well and vice versa. We need adequate zinc to produce HCL and…we need adequate HCL in order to absorb zinc from out food. If one is out of balance, it affects the other. A catch 22!
It’s pretty common to have a mild zinc deficiency especially in children due to their rapid growth and as we age, our stomach acid decreases making it more difficult to absorb zinc and other nutrients. Our standard American diet is high in processed foods and very low in zinc rich foods and processed foods rob our zinc stores (as well as other mineral stores)
A telltale sign of low zinc are those little white spots on your fingernails. If you have them, then you are low in zinc. This is just one way your body help you identify deficiencies and possible health issues, so if you’re a lady and you polish your nails, you should pay attention to some of the other signs… You may also have loss of taste or night blindness. Zinc is super important in immunity, tissue growth and bone formation so we want to have plenty available for our cells.
If you catch every cold that comes around, have a decreased sense of smell or taste, altered vision, wounds that don’t heal quickly these are indications of low zinc status. You can do a zinc taste test using an Aqueous zinc solution, hold it in your mouth for 30 seconds and describe the taste, if there is one. No taste or varied slight taste after a few seconds is low zinc, a strong unpleasant taste you are sufficient in zinc.
Zinc can be found in the following foods:
Whole (intact) grains
Seeds (especially pumpkin)
Try adding some of the above foods into your diet.