Zinc is an amazing mineral that has many benefits, including powering up your immune system, helping your body heal wounds, maintain healthy testosterone levels, balance metabolism, helping with nerve function, assisting proper brain function, cell growth, protecting vision, and assisting in better taste and smell.
Testosterone Production and Female Sex Hormones
Testosterone for men is not just for sex drive; it’s an important hormone that helps protect men’s health. While it is responsible for maintaining the sex drive, it is also important to prevent erectile dysfunction, muscle growth and bone strength. Testosterone levels generally peak in young men in their early twenties, and then begin to drop.
In the United States and other industrialized countries, there has been a recent drop in testosterone levels of men—resulting in an epidemic of erectile dysfunction, sexual dysfunction, and infertility. Lowered testosterone levels also contribute to physical changes like gynecomastia, loss of strength, fatigue and lack of drive.
While there are a few contributing causes, including excess use of plastics and chemicals in our environment which create chemical estrogens (xenoestrogens), low testosterone levels may be as simple as a zinc deficiency—especially if you are vegetarian or vegan.
Zinc is necessary for males to produce adequate amounts of testosterone and to help maintain those levels. In one study, dietary zinc restriction in normal young men was associated with a significant decrease in serum testosterone concentrations after only 20 weeks. Conversely, zinc supplementation of marginally zinc-deficient normal men for six months resulted in a significant increase in serum testosterone levels.
Zinc levels also have an impact on female sex hormones and partially responsible for the creation and release of eggs from the ovaries.
Several studies show zinc deficiency in women can cause problems with hormone levels, including impaired synthesis and secretion of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH), abnormal ovarian development, disruption of the menstrual cycle, prolonged gestation periods, miscarriages, still-births, birth defects, difficult deliveries, pre-eclampsia, and low birth weights of infants.
A diet high in foods that contain zinc, as well as supplementation can enhance and balance hormone levels in both men and women.
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