» Risk factors of zinc deficiency
Low zinc intake
Zinc is a trace element that doesn’t store in the body and should be taken daily in the diet to prevent its deficiency. People who don’t consume their daily zinc recommendations are at higher risk of developing zinc deficiency.
Patients with intestinal disease that decrease zinc absorption such as celiac, cystic fibrosis, and Crohn’s diseases should consider zinc supplements, and these conditions must be treated to avoid its deficiency.
Sickle cell anemia
Studies show that children who suffer from sickle cell anemia have low zinc level in their body because of the high nutrient demands. Patients should consider zinc supplements because studies show it improves the growth rate in these children.
Ethanol in alcohol prevents zinc absorption and increase its execration in the urine. Additionally, alcoholics usually don’t get enough zinc in their diet in the first place.
Pregnant and breastfeeding women
Pregnancy depletes zinc because of the infant’s high nutrient demand. A pregnant woman who starts pregnancy with low zinc levels is at risk of developing zinc deficiency.
Mothers should start weaning after 6 months of birth because of low nutrients in the mother milk and high nutrient demand of the infant. Restrict breastfeed infants after 6 months are at risk of developing zinc deficiency because of low zinc concentration in mother’s milk.