The past few years have taught families many valuable lessons about how quickly germs and viruses can spread. Your immune system has a lot of work to do, and it needs sufficient support to perform its functions to the best of its ability.
Many vitamins and minerals are necessary to promote optimal function of the immune system, with zinc being among the most important. If you’re considering incorporating zinc into your family’s wellness routine, here’s what you need to know about zinc gummies and multivitamins with zinc.
How Does the Immune System Work?
The immune system isn’t a specific place within your body. It’s a responsive process driven by signals and the production of special cells sent to fulfill the functions the body tells them to fulfill.
When the body recognizes something foreign or potentially harmful, it triggers the release of special antibody cells that seek the bad invader cells. The immune system works by containing bad cells and foreign bodies and sending out special cells that can consume the bad cells before replicating.
The immune system’s ability to function depends on the body’s ability to produce effective immune cells. Your body uses vitamins, minerals, and amino acids to create and repair cells. It’s essential to meet your recommended daily values for these things to give your body the tools it needs to produce immune cells effectively.
What Does Zinc Do?
Zinc plays a crucial role in many of the most important processes within your body. Minerals like zinc can help promote normal growth, development, and health in children. They also help adults maintain overall health.
Zinc Fortifies Your Immune System
Zinc is necessary for the formation of many cells, including the cells that power your immune system. Without an adequate amount of zinc, your body may struggle to fulfill its own requirements for supporting the health of the immune system.
Some evidence suggests that orally administered zinc may have a mild effect on reducing the duration of the common cold if ingested within 24 hours of the onset of symptoms. Taking zinc supplements during cold or flu season is that zinc will always work as a preventative. By taking zinc before coming into contact with the virus, you may be able to minimize the severity of symptoms if and when they occur.
Zinc Supports Your Metabolism
Zinc helps the body’s metabolism function properly, converting food into usable energy. Some studies indicate that zinc can help to support normal body weight in people who are overweight. Zinc works with critical metabolic supporters, like B vitamins, to keep your body’s engine going.
Zinc Helps Wounds Heal
Zinc takes a multifaceted approach to promote the healing of wounds. Zinc helps the body’s platelets aggregate at a wound site, helping it close. It also works to battle bacterial invaders that may attempt to infect the wound and delay the healing process.
Zinc can help to modulate redness and swelling while assisting the body in removing dead or damaged tissue that needs to be replaced by the growth of new healthy tissue.
Zinc Supports Your Senses
Your body needs special enzymes to properly interpret the way things taste and smell. Some of these enzymes are dependent on zinc. Without zinc, your body can’t make enough of the enzyme that allows you to enjoy the flavor of a pancake breakfast or the aroma of a pie baking in the oven.
How Much Zinc Should Children Have?
Zinc requirements must slowly increase from birth until adulthood. They’ll also change after puberty, where men will ultimately need more zinc than women to support their systems.
- Birth to six months - 2 mg daily
- Seven months to three years - 3 mg daily
- Four years to eight years - 5 mg daily
- Nine years to 13 years - 8 mg daily
Zinc deficiency is relatively rare in the United States. Children who eat a wide variety of foods and don’t have any underlying conditions like absorption issues are likely to meet their daily recommended value of zinc.
Although these amounts are the recommended daily intake, your child’s needs may differ depending on their health and unique circumstances. It’s always best to follow your pediatrician’s advice regarding diet and supplementation.
What Foods Contain Zinc?
Shellfish is the most valuable dietary source of zinc. Oysters, crab, and lobster contain substantial amounts of zinc, with a single serving of oysters exponentially exceeding the recommended daily amount of zinc.
Zinc is also abundant in animal foods, like beef, pork, chicken, and dairy.
Peas, nuts, and kidney beans contain small amounts of zinc. It would be challenging to meet your family’s recommended daily value of zinc through these foods alone.
Picky eaters, children with shellfish allergies or dairy allergies, and children who live in plant-based households will likely need extra help to meet their daily recommended amount of zinc.
Speak to your pediatrician if you believe your child may not be getting enough zinc through diet alone. Your child’s pediatrician may recommend zinc supplements or general multivitamin supplements to help close some gaps in your child’s diet.
You should always read the label of these supplements to ensure that they don’t contain any animal-derived ingredients or potential allergens before giving them to your child.
What Are Zinc Gummies?
Zinc gummies are chewable zinc supplements. They often look and taste like candy, which means children are less likely to object to them. Zinc gummies come in different strengths, and they almost always contain significantly more than your child’s recommended daily intake of zinc.
What Are the Downside of Zinc Gummies?
Since they look like candy, kids may want to take more of them. They’re often also made the same way candy is made. They contain sugar, gummy junk, artificial colors, and artificial flavors. Why would you hand them to your child if you’re looking to keep these things off of your kitchen table? They also send the wrong message.
By giving your child a candy-like gummy and telling them how it will make them healthier, you’re sending the message that candy is healthy food.
You don’t want your children to grow up with this mentality or distortion of what it means to make a healthy choice and provide their body with the things it needs to stay strong and healthy.
Are There Other Forms of Zinc?
Since zinc gummies may not be the perfect solution, it’s important to consider other ways of providing your child with additional zinc if their pediatrician feels they aren’t getting enough through their daily diet.
Many vitamins, minerals, and supplements come in tablets or soft gel capsules. Some children don’t have a problem taking tablets or softgels, particularly if they’re small in size.
Zinc supplements are often rather large. It’s not safe to give them to young children, and some older children may experience difficulty swallowing them.
Liquid zinc, or zinc drops, certainly look and feel like medicine. Zinc is dispensed directly into a child’s mouth with a glass dropper. It may not taste very great. Children who don’t like liquid cold medicine may not be receptive to zinc in this form.
Although lozenges somewhat resemble candy, they’re similar to cough drops. If you can accurately present zinc lozenges to a child with mild cold symptoms, feel free to do so.
Remember that young children may not understand how tablets work, and they could pose a choking hazard. It may be wise to save tablets for older kids and teens.
Chewable supplements often are the best of both worlds between tablets and gummies. Any child with teeth who understands how to chew food properly can chew up a multivitamin or supplement.
They’re often naturally sweetened to mask the taste of the vitamins they contain, and they don’t resemble candy as much as gummy supplements do.
Hiya Has Zinc Without the Sugar
Hiya’s one-a-day children’s chewable multivitamin is sugar-free, dairy-free, GMO-free, gluten-free, eco-friendly, and vegan. It contains an extra boost of zinc for your growing child who might need a little help getting enough zinc in their diet.
Our formula also includes vitamin C to provide additional support to your growing youngster’s immune system. Our chewable tablet is naturally sweetened with monk fruit and flavored with an organic fruit and vegetable blend. Best of all, kids love it.
Zinc supplementation improves body weight management, inflammatory biomarkers, and insulin resistance in individuals with obesity: a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial | Diabetology & Metabolic Syndrome