2 Jul 2006

Zinc the Essential Mineral

Zinc is an essential trace element which, although only needed in small amounts, is critical for stimulation of well over 100 body enzymes.

Some of the functions of zinc:
1) Ability to fight disease and protect immune system.
2) Helps maintain sense of smell and taste.
3) Helps maintain condition of skin, nails and hair.
4) Increasing male sex drive and potency.
5) Supports foetal development and normal growth during childhood.
6) Helps maintain good night vision.
7) Helps in the healing of wounds and burns.
8) Releases insulin from the pancreas.
9) Utilizes vitamin A stores from the liver.
10) Helps with formation of collagen which gives firmness to the bofy tissues.

The RDA for adults for Zinc is approx 15 mg. Iron is said to affect zinc absorption so if iron supplements are taken it is best to take them between meals. The main plant sources of zinc are peas, beans, brown rice, lentils, spinach, nuts, pumpkin seeds, brewers yeast, green vegetables and tofu. Many products are zinc fortified and vegan zinc lozenge are available in health shops.

Important news on Zinc is that University of Bergen scientists who have carried out large-scale studies in Nepal and India believe that zinc supplement can both treat and prevent diarrhoea. Their research project has produced such good results that the World Health Organisation (WHO) wants to bring zinc into the routine treatment of diarrhoea. Source UIB magasinet

Recipe of the Day

Raw Food Date Nut Torte By Alissa Cohen

Fudgy, creamy and sweet! I bring this with me when I'm visiting someone I'd like to introduce to raw food. People can't believe it's raw! And it's one of the quickest and easiest desserts to make.

Base of Tort:
2 cups raisins
2 cups walnuts

1 cup dates, pitted and soaked
1/2 lemon, juiced

For Base:
1. In a food processor, combine raisins and walnuts and blend until well
blended and moist. (This will take a few minutes and you may see it forming
a ball. Just make sure the raisins come out looking like a fudgy mixture and
are not still grainy)

2. Remove from processor and mold onto a plate in a round circle about 1 1/2
inches thick.

For Frosting:

1. In a food processor, combine dates and lemon juice until smooth and

2. Spread the frosting on top of the torte
Note: I like this served at room temperature as the frosting and torte are still sticky, but if you want a firmer texture that will be easier to slice, refrigerate it for a few hours.


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