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Best Food Sources of Zinc

10 Best Food Sources of Zinc


Zinc is one of the essential minerals that our body receives from some food items. In some over the counter drugs, zinc is sold as cold remedies. 

Zinc performs various functions in our body like it is involved in various aspects of cellular metabolism, it acts as a catalyst for more than 100 enzymes, plays a role in healing of the wound, immune function, DNA synthesis, protein synthesis and cell division. 

Additional benefits of zinc in the human body is for growth and proper development during childhood, pregnancy and infancy. 

Best Food Sources of Zinc
Best Food Sources of Zinc

1.   Zinc Rich Dairy Products

Apart from being a rich source of protein, calcium and vitamin D; dairy products can also be a delicious and nutritious source of zinc. According to researchers, a cup of low-fat or non-fat cup of milk contains 9% of the daily value of zinc and 1 cup of yoghurt contains around 20 – 22 per cent of the daily value of zinc. 

Cheese as a dairy product is also a noteworthy source of zinc. 


2.    Whole Grains

Whole grains are loaded with fibres, minerals, vitamin, magnesium, iron and a good quantity of zinc. A slice of whole - wheat bread contains 5% of zinc while a cup of raw oats contains about 27% value of zinc. 

There are distinctive health benefits of zinc in your body and eating whole grains can add some more happy and healthy years to your life span.

We can’t also ignore the fact that grains contain phytates in them and these further bind to zinc and reduce its absorption in the body. Therefore, it is likely to provide less zinc. 


3.    Dark Chocolates

Taste with health makes a great experience, right? Dark chocolate making to list of nutritious food items is bliss.

Due to its flavanol content, dark chocolate has some vascular benefits, like it improves your blood flow and reduces blood pressure. 

Dark chocolates contain a good amount of cocoa in it. Where 70 to 80% of cocoa varieties contain about 8% of zinc; on the other hand, 60 to 65% of cocoa varieties contain 7% of zinc in them.

Though its good to have dark chocolate on the list it can also be an additional source of sugar and calories. It is strongly advised to not completely rely on it for zinc. Kindly stick to one bar a day. 

4.    Eggs

When we talk about eggs as a source of one nutrient, we fail to do justice with its ability as a healthy food item. 

It is not only a good source of zinc but proteins, an appropriate number of calories, fats, vitamins and minerals including selenium and vitamin B. 

A moderate amount of zinc is present in eggs which that helps you meet your daily requirement. 

5.    Some Vegetables like Mushroom and Kale

Certain vegetables like mushroom, garlic, kale, spinach and broccoli contain vital vitamins, minerals and most specifically, zinc. They provide a good amount of zinc to our body with minimum calories added to it. 

1 cooked cup of kale contains about 3% of the daily value of zinc so does a cup of sliced raw mushroom. 

Additional to zinc, kale also offers potassium, calcium, copper, Vitamin C, K, A and B6. 

Though other vegetables are not rich in zinc but eating a a healthy and balanced diet can help you reduce the risk of cancer, heart disease and chronic diseases. 

6.    Meat

A good amount of zinc can be obtained from different kinds of meat including beef, pork and lamb. 

In general, meat is an excellent source of zinc. Red meat is always prioritized in the list to obtain a good amount of zinc. Choose lean meats for most nutritious cuts. 

3.5 ounce of raw ground meat contains about 44% of the daily value of zinc. Along with zinc, meat is also loaded with some other nutrients like proteins, fats, creatine, B Vitamins and iron. 

Consuming red meat, especially processed meat can increase the chances of getting cancer and heart diseases. 

Therefore, it is advised to eat unprocessed meat in recommended amount with other fruits and vegetables. 

7.    Legumes

Legumes contain a substantial amount of zinc. Legumes include beans, chickpeas and lentils. 

Different legumes contain around 11 – 19% of the daily value of zinc. 

Legumes have very less amount of calorie, low fat, loaded with vitamins, minerals and dietary fibres. 

Like whole grains legumes too contain phytates that inhibit the absorption of zinc and other minerals. 

For animals, zinc is absorbed in a better way in comparison to legumes.

8.    Oysters

1 oyster helps you with around 50% of the recommended amount of zinc. This capacity of oyster makes it a very good source of the mineral.

Due to a high amount of zinc present in oysters, makes it zinc powerhouse. 

They are low-calorie high zinc source of shellfish but the other oysters do not contain a similar amount of zinc but can turn out to be a healthy choice. 

9.    Nuts

Nuts include cashews, pine nuts, almonds and peanuts that can increase your intake of zinc. 

Amongst all these nuts if you are looking for the one rich in zinc then cashews will be a good choice. 1 ounce of cashews contains 15% of the daily value of zinc. Nuts can be an eminent choice of snacks that can be linked to a reduction in the risk factor of heart disease, diabetes and cancer. 

        10. Seeds 

Seeds can be a healthy choice of food incorporated into your diet that also contains a good amount of zinc. 

Specifically, some seeds can be a better choice over other seeds; for example, hemp seeds. 30 grams of these seeds contain about 31 – 43% of the recommended daily intake of zinc for men and women. 

In addition to zinc, nuts are also loaded with fibre, Vitamins, minerals and healthy fats. 

When nuts included in your diet, they serve you with some additional benefits including reducing blood pressure and cholesterol. 


Now you have 10 foods listed above to include a good amount of zinc into your diet. 

Go for it and have a mineral-rich life ahead. 

Written by – 


Health Analyst 

This is only one knowledge-sharing effort from our side, It is advisable to consult with your doctor before application.

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