“Health A to Z” – Z

The Letter Z.

Zeaxanthin

An antioxidant (a carotenoid), which along with lutein defends cells from the attack by damaging free radicals. Both are important in protecting against the development of age-related macular degeneration and cataracts. Fortunately both carotenoids are abundantly available in many food sources like eggs, kale, spinach, turnip greens, collard greens, romaine lettuce, broccoli, zucchini, corn, garden peas and Brussels sprouts. To maximize the availability of the carotenoids in the foods listed above, the foods should be eaten raw or steamed lightly.

Zinc

Zinc is one of the most important trace elements needed by your cells. It has a role in boosting our immune systems, aids in protein synthesis, cell reproduction and wound healing, and plays a major part in fertility and conception.
The importance of zinc can not be over-emphasized.  While zinc is naturally present in various foods and it food sources such as meat, poultry, dairy products, beans, whole grains and nuts are rich in zinc, the body can only absorb about 30% of the zinc that we take in. Because of this, and the fact we eat many processed foods zinc deficiencies are possible.


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