Baby Zinc Deficiency Symptoms & 9 Best Baby Food High In Zinc

When your family has children, there are many difficulties for you. Especially what to eat, what to drink, it is an important condition for the development of children. Besides, you also have to wonder about the need to supplement the nutrients for your baby. Vitamins and minerals are indispensable factors in maintaining the overall health of each baby. However, there is one type of nutrient that does not receive much attention. That is zinc.

For children, just lack of important nutrients will also greatly affect their development. What happens if a baby lacks nutrition is zinc?

Benefits of zinc for babies

Baby Zinc Deficiency

Zinc plays an important role in the development of height, muscles, nerves and immunity, especially for infants.

Good for the immune system:

Zinc supports and maintains the effective functioning of the immune system, essential for protecting the body from illness, and healing wounds. Zinc deficiency reduces the development and function of most immune cells, including T cells, B cells and macrophages. Therefore zinc deficiency damages the immune function, increasing the risk of infection, thereby reducing the growth and development of children, increasing the risk of malnutrition and death in children.

Improves brain health:  

Zinc is a very important mineral for brain health. Zinc along with vitamin B6 helps the neurotransmitter in your baby brain work better. Interestingly, the hippocampus – the brain’s memory center – contains a very high amount of zinc. Obviously, if you want to improve your baby brain health, provide enough zinc for your baby.

Read more: How To Relieve Baby Constipation When Weaning?

Healthy bones:

Everyone knows calcium is important for strong bones, but do you know that zinc is needed for healthy bones? Zinc is a part of bones, and without zinc your body can not build strong bones. To get the best benefits for your baby bones, your baby should consume zinc and calcium at different times as calcium and zinc are competitively absorbed.

Healthy hair:

One of the signs of zinc deficiency is hair loss. When your baby is not zinc enough, your hair may thin, resulting in fractures. Conversely, when your baby fully absorb zinc, baby hair becomes thick and shiny. In fact, zinc is very effective to stimulate hair growth, so doctors often advise people with hair loss should zinc supplement.

Good for the eyes:

A surprising fact about zinc is very good for your baby eyes. When it comes to vision, zinc supports the delivery of vitamin A to the retina. Without zinc, the eye does not get enough vitamin A, and results in vision loss.

Healthy Skin:

First, zinc removes acne because it regulates the amount of oil and reduces the bacteria that cause acne. In addition, zinc helps to produce collagen and this gives you a supple, smooth complexion.

What causes zinc deficiency?

The need for zinc in children is very high so the mother needs to pay attention to zinc supplement in the food for children daily. However, there are many cases of zinc deficiency, according to recent studies, which show that the prevalence of zinc deficiency in the world today is very high at 25%-40%. What causes zinc deficiency:

Because parents pay little attention to this substance, so do not add zinc foods to their daily diet.

Do not eat too many zinc foods such as beef, bean sprouts, oysters, egg yolks… for a long time, the child was deficient in substance.

In the process of cooking food, mothers often make mistakes when combining foods together, leading to the elimination of cassava in food. This causes the loss of zinc micronutrients.

Children with diseases can cause the elimination of zinc like diarrhea … mother did not supplement zinc timely.

There is also a lack of knowledge about the nutrition of children to children with severe zinc deficiency.

Read more: Baby Grinding Teeth : Causes And How To Stop ?

Baby zinc deficiency symptoms :

Poor neurological function.

Zinc deficiency is often fatigue, irritability, poor sleep.

Reduce attention and efficiency of activities.

Slow growth, anorexia due to taste disorder.

Weak immunity.

They are more susceptible to infections, such as malaria, skin diseases, pneumonia, etc.


Zinc-deficient babies often have diarrhea and can last a long time. The ability to absorb nutrients is also less conducive to stunting, slow growth, short.


Children with zinc deficiency are often fatigued, physically sensitive to the environment, with everything around them: food, drinks or toys.

Expressions: sneezing, runny nose, rash redness, …

Hair loss, thinning and weak hair.

Zinc deficiency is associated with thyroid function. Hypothyroidism causes hair loss, thinning and weakening.

Rash, acne.

Because of immunity, the baby is susceptible to infection by bacteria, viruses and fungi. Zinc deficiency interferes with the activities of the body, including the skin.

Read more: 3 Best Ways To Teach Your Baby Talk Early?

Baby foods rich in zinc should be added daily :

baby food high in zinc

The best way to add zinc to your baby and prevent zinc deficiency is to incorporate nutrient-rich foods in your daily diet. Nearly 90% of zinc in our body is found in bones and muscles. The recommended daily amount of zinc is only 15.

Fortunately, it is not difficult to obtain the necessary amount of zinc because this nutrient is present in many foods. You can look through the list of foods below to supplement the amount of zinc needed for your baby.

1 / Zinc rich grains for the body

Grains from bran to whole grain contain a very high zinc. However, you should note that these grains also contain phytates that are closely related to zinc and may interfere with the absorption of this substance. In addition, you should avoid using high levels of sugar because the sugar can lose the health benefits of zinc. Include 1 serving of 100 grams of cereal to provide 52mg of zinc.

2 / Wheat germ

Wheat germ is also a source of zinc rich foods. Each in 100 grams of cabbage sprouts can provide 17 mg of zinc, corresponding to 111% of the daily zinc intake. You can add wheat germ to your baby meal by making cakes or sprinkling them on your salad.

3 / Zinc supplements with pumpkin seeds

In addition to being a zinc-rich diet, pumpkin seeds will also help the body prevent certain cancers and boost the immune system. 100 g of pumpkin seeds can supply about 10.3 mg zinc, corresponding to 69% of the daily zinc intake. To get the maximum amount of zinc, you should eat them alive because roasting them can reduce the amount of zinc.

4 / Sesame seeds rich in minerals and zinc

Sesame seeds are also rich in minerals and zinc is one of them. Whether your baby eat raw or grind them into butter, 100 g sesame seeds can still provide about 10 mg of zinc. Sesame seeds can be incorporated into your baby diet by using them to process hummus (a Middle Eastern dish made from Tahini butter) or use sesame seeds instead of wheat flour to make pie.

5 / Zinc is abundant in meat

If your baby eats a lot of meat, your baby will probably be less susceptible to zinc deficiency due to the fact that meat is one of the most zinc rich foods. High zinc meats include beef, lamb, large meat, chicken, and turkey. 100 grams cooked beef can provide up to 12.3 mg or 82% of the required amount of zinc.

Similarly, 100 grams cooked lean pork provides 5 mg or 33% DV zinc. Chicken also contains high zinc content. A cooked chicken thigh provides 15% DV of this mineral. However, the meat contains high fat and cholesterol so you should control the amount of meat needed in your baby meal.

Read more: Common Causes Of Baby Skin Peeling And How To Treat It

6 / Shellfish

Shellfish such as crabs, oysters, lobsters and mussels contain a lot of zinc. Therefore, these animals are always on the list of zinc rich foods. A diet of 6 oysters contains 76 mg of zinc. This amount of zinc is nearly seven times the amount of zinc needed daily.

Shellfish are not easy to find. Because these animals contain too much zinc, you should not use them often. Zinc suppression can lead to the risk of immunodeficiency and other metabolic problems.

7 / Zinc rich fruit supplement

Fruit is a good source of zinc, but not all fruits are rich in zinc. Pomegranates are the top fruits of the list. A fresh pomegranate provides 1 mg zinc. Avocado is also rich in zinc, it can provide 1.3 mg per fruit. Raspberries are also rich in zinc. A cup of raspberries yields 0.8 mg of zinc.

8 / Vegetables contain a lot of zinc

Vegetables are also essential foods, with high nutritional content. Vegetables include beans such as soybeans, lima beans, peas. Soybeans contain about 9 mg of zinc, while peas and lima beans contain 2 mg of zinc each.

Other vegetables also contain lots of zinc including green beans (1 mg) and asparagus (0.5 mg). Corn can also provide 0.7 mg of zinc while potatoes and pumpkins carry 0.6 mg of this nutrient. Among the green vegetables, Swiss bulbs are the most zinc rich foods that can provide about 0.2 mg per serving.

Spinach is a very nutritious food and zinc is not an exception. A cooked spinach diet can provide 1.4 mg of zinc equivalent to 9% of this mineral. This is the reason you should use this leaf variety in your baby meals

9 / Dark chocolate

A piece of dark chocolate can help a lot in improving the body’s zinc. 100g dark chocolate can bring 9.6 mg of zinc. 100g cocoa powder provides 6.8 mg corresponding to 45% DV zinc. Eating dark chocolate is an effective way to increase the amount of zinc absorbed.

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