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<b> USE OF ZINC IN HEALTH FROM EARLY CHILDHOOD TO LATE AGE </b>

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Author(s): M. L. C. SELOW | I. VIEIRA | M. H. TOMMASI | A. C. RITT | A. E. MAISTRO | A. L. GUERREIRO | F. LANGE | J. H. SOUZA | J. M. T. ANDRADE

Journal: Alimentos e Nutrição
ISSN 0103-4235

Volume: 18;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 457;
Date: 2008;
Original page

Keywords: Zinc | stomathology | geriatrics | flavor

ABSTRACT
The aim of the present article is to make a brief approach of the literature about the benefi ts of the use of zinc and its infl uencion the organism. This element is a mineral that acts fixing the metabolic and physiological processes in all ages, mainly in pregnant women, elderly people and children. The first recommendation about the prescription of zinc was made by the National Academy of Sciences in the Dietary Reference Intakes – DRI´s.12 In this document, individual dosages of zinc consumption are recommended and established in different levels/quantities. The maximum level of zinc, in this case, is determined according to the patient´s gender and age rate. According to Bhatnalar & Natchu,2 it was seen that pregnant women who ingested supplements of zinc during the pregnancy had fetus with a stronger activity and a more robust heart, compared to the fetus whose mothers did not take the mineral. In children, it was verifi ed that the zinc helps in the early regeneration of the intestine with a therapeutic effect in cases of persistent diarrhea. In the oral cavity, according to Henkin et al.,7 the deficiency of zinc affects mainly the elderly, having associations with those who complain about mouth burning and dryness. Besides, another important change that has a larger incidence among the elderly is the halitosis, and the use of antiseptics made of zinc has been efficient in the treatment of this pathology. In patients undertreated with radiotherapy, in conformity to Ertekin et al.,5 agents with a biological activity similar to zinc (antioxidants) have been used to treat mucositis.6 Due to its wide specter of infl uence, we may say that zinc is a fundamental mineral to the human organism, producing a great number of benefi ts when on the right concentration.
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