Zinc is a chemical element that is also known as spelter. It has an abbreviation of Zn and an atomic number of 30. It was discovered in the 10th century, and its chemical composition makes it very similar to magnesium.
However, it has five different isotopes, making it one of the most reactive chemical elements. It also is mined naturally in Asia, Australia, and the U.S. Healthy people should consume between eight to 11 mg of zinc each day as part of a healthy diet. Some of the more common foods in which zinc can be found include beef, chicken, lamb, sesame seeds, lentils, garbanzos, quinoa, shrimp, and turkey.

Signs of a Zinc Deficiency

People who fail to eat enough zinc each day may experience a number of different symptoms and conditions. For example, milder cases of zinc deficiency can cause acne, eczema, and dermatitis. People also may have brittle fingernails and experience hair loss.

More serious cases of zinc deficiency can cause people to suffer from mouth ulcers, stomatitis, and white tongue coating. They may have an impaired sense of smell and also have lowered immunity to infectious diseases like the flu and pneumonia.

Zinc Excess

Overdosing on zinc is possible when people consume more than 200 mg of the mineral at any given time. Some of the symptoms of zinc overdose include irritability, fatigue, abdominal pain, vomiting, diarrhea, and dizziness. They can also lose their hair.

Men may have lower sperm counts while both genders can develop rashes on their legs, arms, and buttocks. Like sodium, excess zinc must be flushed out of the body with water. People who have too much zinc in their bodies may have to be hospitalized while they undergo intravenous treatments to restore their natural zinc levels in their bloodstreams.