The human body needs a lot of nourishment in the form of vitamins and minerals. There is a wide range of nutrients you have to supply your body every day to ensure that it is properly nourished. Two of the nutrients that your body needs are zinc and vitamin D.
Zinc is a mineral that is a required for several of your body’s processes. It helps to metabolize nutrients, regulate and maintain the immune system, and build body tissues. Human body is incapable of storing zinc, so you have to consume zinc every day to ensure that you are receiving the proper daily requirements. The daily zinc requirement for men is 11 mg and the daily requirement for women is 8 mg. Pregnant women may need up to 11 mg per day though, and 12 mg if they are breast feeding.
Vitamin D is actually produced naturally by the body when exposed to sunlight. But there are multiple reasons that people develop a vitamin D deficiency. Dark skinned people tend to not generate enough vitamin D from sunlight. People who spend excessive time indoors, eat a western diet, or wear sunblock regularly, also tend to not get enough Vitamin D. Therefore, it is important to include vitamin D rich foods in your diet.
Keep reading to learn the best vitamin D and zinc rich foods to include in your diet.
Zinc rich foods
Meat is one of the best sources of zinc that you can find. Red meat is probably the best source; it includes lamb and beef. A 100-gram serving of red meat contains approximately 4.8 mg of zinc, or 44% of the recommended daily intake. Generally speaking though, all sources of meat are great sources of zinc. Just make sure to monitor your meat intake, especially processed meat, as consuming too much can result in high cholesterol or heart attack.
Shellfish are great low-calorie zinc sources, especially oysters. Oysters have very high amounts of zinc. Eating 6 medium oysters will provide the body with 32 mg of zinc. All forms of shellfish contain some amount of zinc, oysters just happen to be the best.
Legumes are great zinc sources. They have high quantities of zinc, 100 grams of cooked lentils has about 12% of the daily recommended amount of zinc. There is also a large variety of legumes to choose from such as, chick peas, lentils, black beans, etc. which makes it easy to include in your diet.
Vitamin D rich foods
Salmon is a great fatty fish, that is a great source of vitamin D. Wild caught salmon tends to contain more vitamin D than farm raised salmon. The average wild caught salmon contains 988 IU of vitamin D per 100 gram serving, which is 124% of the recommended daily intake. The average farmed salmon on the other hand, contains a much smaller 25% of that recommend daily intake.
Herring is a very popular fish that is eaten worldwide, often in canned form. It can be served in a variety of ways to suit a wide array of diets. Consuming fresh Atlantic herring will provide your body with 216 IU per 100 grams, which is equivalent to 27% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin D. Be careful when consuming pickled herring because it contains high amounts of sodium which can be detrimental to your health.
Eggs are great sources of vitamin D and ok sources of zinc. They are a great alternative for people who are vegetarian or cannot eat fish. But to get the benefits, you have to eat the entire egg, including the yolk. Free ranged chickens tend to have higher vitamin D content than caged chickens, due to sunlight exposure.
The Wrap Up
It is important to include vitamin D and zinc in your diet, because your body needs them to function. But you have to make sure that you are not compromising your diet to include zinc and vitamin D rich foods. Make sure to always eat a balanced diet that provides your body with all the necessary nutrients