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Zinc Requirements for Teenagers and Children - Essay Example

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In the paper “Zinc Requirements for Teenagers and Children” the author has conducted a research on zinc intake among Australian teenagers. Zinc contributes towards the development of the neurological, reproductive, and immune systems in children…
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Zinc Requirements for Teenagers and Children
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Download file to see previous pages In its milder forms, the deficiency of zinc deficiency can offset taste dysfunctions, reduced growth velocity, and reduced attention span. Zinc is a particularly important trace mineral for an individual during the teenage years since it affects aspects concerning sexual maturation. There are different foods that can provide zinc for growing children and adolescents. Foods such as shellfish, red meat, and grains contain a lot of zinc (NHMRC 2003). Zinc can also be found in foods such as yoghurt, milk, kidney, cheeses, green beans, nuts, peanut butter, lentils, tofu, wheat bread, eggs, rice, pasta, onions, bran, sunflower seeds, and ginger. In today’s food market, there are also many cereals that are fortified with zinc elements. Zinc tends to affect the absorption rate of iron and vice versa; this means that children who consume iron supplements can develop a zinc deficiency if their iron consumption is more than that of zinc. The Australian population’s intake of zinc has improved since the 1960s. Today, meat, poultry, fish, and dairy foods are the main suppliers of zinc in Australia (Whitney, Rolfes, Crowes, Cameron-Smith and Walsh 2011). For Australian adolescents and younger children, cereals are also regular providers of zinc in the daily diet. Zinc dietary requirements for the populations in New Zealand and Australia were amended in 2005 to include definite a Recommended Dietary Intake (RDI), Nutrient Reference Values (NRV), what Upper Level of Intake (UL) would comprise of, and an Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) (National Health and Medical Research Council 2006). This review would result in larger submissions of what would be viewed as constituting the average zinc requirements for girls and women, as well as for adolescent boys and men. The Australian National Children’s Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey was conducted in 2007 to establish the right quantities of minerals and other food substances for the Australian population. This research would reveal that Australian boys between the ages of 14 and 16 were the subgroup that was least likely to fulfil the requirements of the Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) where zinc is concerned. The survey also established that most Australian toddlers between the ages of 2 and 3 years showed evidence of zinc amounts that far exceeded the doses recommended by the Australian National Children’s Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey. This survey showed that there has been a change in the groups that were formerly thought to have many deficiencies in zinc. In a study conducted in 1995, it was established that adolescent girls and not young boys exhibited symptoms of inadequate zinc intake. The 2007 survey also revealed that meat, fish and poultry remain as the main contributors of zinc in the age group between 2 and 18 years. Moreover, breakfast cereals are also rising as sources of zinc; and have now replaced milk as the second largest supplier of zinc for Australians between the ages of 2 and 18. According to the 2007 research, meat and milk products accounted for 68% of Australian youth’s total annual intake of zinc (National Health and Medical Research Council 2006). For Australians between the ages of 14 and 16, pizza, takeaway burgers and pasta was also a large source of zinc. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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