5 Zinc Deficiency Symptoms to Watch For

October 6, 2017

[Below is my transcript of my video about zinc deficiency symptoms, along with supplemental information on the topic.]

Today, I’m going to share with you the five warning signs that you’re zinc-deficient. Zinc deficiency is something that’s very common and can cause a number of health issues. I estimate about 75 percent of people out there today are deficient in zinc and/or show display zinc deficiency symptoms.

Here are the five warning signs that you are zinc-deficient, along with my top five zinc-rich foods you should be getting in and what to look for in a zinc supplement.


5 Zinc Deficiency Symptoms

1. Compromised Immune System

The No. 1 warning sign that you have a zinc deficiency is if your immune system is compromised. If you tend to get sick frequently, have immune system issues, ever come down with any sort of chronic allergies or anything like that, that’s a big warning sign that you are zinc-deficient.

Why? Because zinc is vital for immune function. It plays a part in:

  • T-cell growth and differentiation into the white blood cells that we need to ward off disease
  • Apoptosis to kill dangerous bacteria, virus and cancer cells
  • Gene transcription
  • Protective functions of our cell membranes

So if you’re immune-compromised — if you get sick often or you’re always that person that gets sick — that is a major warning sign. Also, if you’ve had any other disease related to immunodeficiency, that’s a zinc deficiency symptom and sign that you are zinc-deficient.

2. Leaky Gut Syndrome

The No. 2 warning sign you’re zinc-deficient is if you have leaky gut syndrome. Leaky gut is a condition in which proteins can leak through the gut and cause systemic inflammation, and that’s also related to food allergies, thyroid problems and adrenal fatigue.

Zinc has been shown to resolve permeability alterations and tighten leaky gut symptoms, so if you suffer from leaky gut, have malabsorption and do not digest nutrients well, you probably suffer from zinc deficiency symptoms as well.

3. Diarrhea

The No. 3 warning sign you’re zinc deficient is if you struggle with diarrhea. If you ever have loose stools and your poop isn’t firmly formed in the toilet, that’s one of the big zinc deficiency symptoms. Also, if you have inflammatory bowel disease, like irritable bowel syndrome — even gas and bloating — those are warning signs you are zinc-deficient.

Zinc supplementation has been shown to treat diarrhea in children, showcasing that zinc can be a powerful cure for diarrhea.

4. Thinning Hair or Hair Loss

The No. 4 warning sign is thinning hair or losing your hair. If you have thin hair or are losing your hair, zinc is an essential mineral that really supports thicker hair growth because zinc deficiency is an often overlooked cause of thinning hair and balding. It’s why zinc supplementation is a natural hair loss remedy.

Zinc also supports your body growing and repairing and healing.

5. Inflammatory Skin Issues

The No. 5 warning sign you’re zinc-deficient is if you have any sort of inflammatory skin issue, especially acne, eczema, dermatitis or psoriasis. All of those are warning signs that you are zinc-deficient. Therefore, zinc is one of the home remedies for acne that any acne sufferer should consider.


4 Zinc Deficiency Causes

There are other warning signs and zinc deficiency symptoms, but I want to talk about what people are most deficient in zinc and what causes a zinc deficiency.

1. Stress

One of the biggest things that causes a zinc deficiency is high levels of emotional stress. We all know that chronic stress can kill your quality of life, and if you are emotionally stressed out, over time your body has to utilize zinc to heal and repair the body, brain, skin and organs.

Zinc is a reparative mineral that actually is even critical for protein synthesis and utilization in your body. So if you have a loss in the family or a very stressful job and you’re not sleeping enough, that is a big cause of zinc deficiency.

2. Overtraining

The second most common cause of zinc deficiency is over-exercise and overtraining. Triathletes, marathon runners and CrossFit athletes are some of the people that are most susceptible to a zinc deficiency. So if you work out a lot — especially if you do a lot of high-intensity training (HITT) workouts or CrossFit workouts — and maybe even have worked out too much in the past, that can cause zinc deficiency.

3. Pregnancy or Breast-feeding

The third most common reason you’re zinc-deficient is if you’re pregnant or breast-feeding. Obviously when you’re eating for two, that can cause mineral deficiencies, including zinc deficiency.

4. Malabsorption

Last but not least, typically aging or elderly women tend to have malabsorption, so they don’t absorb zinc well and tend to have zinc deficiency symptoms.


How to Overcome Zinc Deficiency Symptoms

If you’re going to get more zinc in your diet to offset your zinc deficiency symptoms, a few things need to happen. The No. 1 thing you need to do is consume more high-zinc foods.

Pumpkin seeds and oysters are very high in zinc; try my Spicy Roasted Pumpkin Seeds Recipe to start. Another great form of zinc is grass-fed beef, and then sprouted nuts and seeds, chia seeds, flaxseeds, almonds, and peas are also good forms of zinc. So getting these foods in your diet can increase those zinc levels.

Last but not least, you need probiotics as well. Taking a good, quality probiotic supplement and consuming probiotic foods like kefir and fermented foods and vegetables like sauerkraut increase your absorption and digestion of zinc. Remember that it’s not just what you eat, but also what you digest. So getting more probiotic-rich foods in your diet and supplements can actually improve your overall zinc absorption.

Remember, the biggest zinc deficiency symptoms are immune issues, leaky gut, bowel issues like diarrhea, thinning or losing your hair, as well as inflammatory skin issues like acne. Those are warning signs you have a zinc deficiency.

If you want to watch more videos about natural treatments, you can subscribe here to my YouTube channel for more information.

Read Next: 10 Powerful Zinc Benefits, Including Fighting Cancer


From the sound of it, you might think leaky gut only affects the digestive system, but in reality it can affect more. Because Leaky Gut is so common, and such an enigma, I’m offering a free webinar on all things leaky gut. Click here to learn more about the webinar.

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