- Zinc is important for your immune system.
- Your body can’t make zinc so you need to get it through your diet.
- Teenage girls need about 8-9mg of zinc every day.
Zinc is a mineral that is important for your immune system. Zinc is also needed for wound healing and normal growth and development.
How much zinc do I need?
Zinc is an essential mineral, which means that your body cannot make it on its own, so you must get it through your diet. The amount of zinc you need daily, or the recommended dietary allowance (RDA), depends on your age and gender. Girls age 9 to 13 years old need 8 milligrams of zinc each day. Girls age 14 to 18 years old need 9 milligrams each day.
What are some good sources of zinc?
Oysters are the best source of zinc, but red meat and poultry are the most commonly eaten sources of zinc. Zinc is also found in:
- Dairy products
- Fortified breakfast cereals
- Meat, poultry, and shellfish
- Soy foods
- Whole grains
Some foods rich in zinc are listed below:
|Food||Serving||Milligrams (mg) of zinc per serving|
|Cheddar cheese||1 ounce||0.9|
|1% Milk||1 cup||1.0|
|Ricotta cheese, part skim||1/2 cup||1.7|
|Yogurt, plain, low-fat||1 cup||2.2|
|Grains and Cereals |
|Brown rice, cooked, long grain||1/2 cup||0.6|
|Cheerios® cereal||1 cup||4.7|
|Life® cereal||3/4 cup||4.8|
|Wheat germ||1 Tbsp||1.2|
|Lima beans||1/2 cup||0.7|
|Meat, Poultry, Shellfish, and Eggs|
|Chicken breast||3 ounces||0.9|
|Egg, extra large||1 egg||0.7|
|Hamburger, 95% lean||3 ounces||5.4|
|Sirloin steak||3 ounces||4.5|
|Soy Foods |
|Tofu, firm||1/2 cup||1.1|