For the human body to perform physical activity correctly, it needs adequate fuel for the job. The mineral zinc is valuable in optimizing the performance of the human body, so what is your zinc intake?
What is Zinc?
Zinc is a strong antioxidant and one of the 24 micronutrients the body needs to function. Zinc is found throughout the entire body in our tissue. This mineral plays an important role in muscle growth and repair after strenuous physical activity. As the physical demands placed on the body increase so too does the amount of zinc your body requires. Not only do we burn zinc during physical activity, it also leaves the body through sweat, further lowering zinc levels within us. Unfortunately, our bodies do not store zinc so including it in your daily diet is essential to maintaining the appropriate levels.
What Food Products are High in Zinc?
Zinc can be found in animal meats such as fish, chicken, beef, oysters, eggs and legumes. If animal meat is not a part of your diet, you can still meet your daily zinc intake in foods such as chickpeas, pecans, pumpkin seeds and spinach (to name some).
Another way to meet your zinc intake could be through Vitamin supplements or nutrition shakes like Nutriboost. One benefit to vitamin supplements is that you consume the vitamins and minerals without having to spend the time and energy involved with eating all that food.
How Does Zinc Benefit Swimmers?
Zinc deficiencies are common amongst endurance athletes. Due to the significant stamina and strength involved in swimming, swimmers are prone to these zinc deficiencies. Low-levels of zinc in the body can cause:
- Muscle loss
- Body weight reduced
- Recovery time lengthened
- Osteoprosis risk increased
If you are interested in learning more about the role zinc plays in the body or the actual amounts that you should be ingesting on a daily basis, check out “How Swimmers Can Use Zinc to Help Them Swim Faster.”