What foods contain zinc

Zinc-containing foods: There is a lot of zinc in here

Are you getting enough zinc? The German Nutrition Society (DGE) has increased the recommended intake for the trace element. How much zinc you should consume every day and which foods contain particularly high amounts of it.

  • Zinc is an important trace element for our body and among other things. involved in the immune system, metabolism and cell division.

  • The German Nutrition Society (DGE) recommends new, higher reference values ​​for the trace element.

  • If you are eating whole foods, you should pay special attention to your zinc intake. With the right preparation, you can increase your zinc intake from whole grains and the like.

Zinc: DGE has increased the recommended intake

You can meet your daily zinc requirement with a balanced and varied diet. Until now, women should consume 7 mg of zinc per day and men 10 mg of the trace element daily. The German Nutrition Society recommended this amount to every adult regardless of their diet. The German Nutrition Society (DGE) has now adapted its recommendation more closely to individual needs. What is new is that the recommended intake of zinc is now given depending on the phytate intake.

Does a healthy diet increase the need for zinc?

According to the German Nutrition Society, those who eat a lot of whole grain products and / or legumes have a higher need for zinc. These foods contain phytate, a natural component that reduces zinc absorption. The trace element is bound insoluble so that our body cannot break down and absorb it in the gastrointestinal tract.

Why does our body need zinc?

Zinc is one of the essential trace elements. The human body contains around 2 grams of zinc, with our individual organs and tissues containing very different amounts of zinc. Around 70 percent are in the bones, skin and hair.

Your daily zinc needs

Zinc requirement in mglow intake of phytatemedium intake of phytatehigh intake of phytate

Phytate: what is it?

Plants such as cereals and legumes use phytate to store the nutrients zinc and iron. It is mainly found in the outer layers of cereals, so that whole grains contain significantly higher amounts than extract flour. With the right preparation, the content can be reduced and zinc is released: When it comes to nutrients, you get the greatest benefit from legumes and whole grains, if these foods are soaked or sprouted, or if doughs made from whole wheat flour can rise for a long time (e.g. sourdough bread, which traditionally requires longer cooking times). You can soak oatmeal in water for a few hours or overnight; legumes are soaked before use anyway. Fruit acids from various types of fruit also release zinc when they are eaten together, e.g. B. in hummus, which is usually refined with a little lemon juice. Excessive avoidance is therefore not appropriate. Whole grains and legumes are high in nutrients and fiber, so the benefits more than offset the negative effects of the phytate. Recently, researchers are even discussing the positive effects of phytate on our health, such as: B. an antioxidant effect or a regulating influence on the blood sugar level.

FoodZinc (mg) per 100 grams of food
Pumpkin seeds7
2 slices of sourdough wholemeal bread2,4
Oatmeal (best soaked overnight)3,7
Chickpea hummus1,8
dried figs1

Table: Animal foods high in zinc

Animal foods such as milk, yogurt, cheese, and meat are also sources of zinc, with dark meat providing more zinc than white poultry meat.

FoodZinc (mg) per 100 grams of food
Cheese (general)4
Gouda cheese3,8
egg yolk3,8
Meat, e.g. beef4,4

Shrimp and shrimp also contain zinc (around 2.3 mg per 100 grams). When shopping as well as with meat and other animal foods, if possible use organic goods and / or products from species-appropriate husbandry.

Photo credit: Vladeep / Shutterstock.com