A flatlay of some of the best food sources of zinc on a round wooden serving board against a grey background. Zinc food sources of animal origin products such as meat, fish, cheese and eggs are laid out alongside vegan and plant-based sources such as pumpkin seeds, legumes, mushrooms and a variety of nuts.

Zinc: everything you need to know about this vital mineral

Zinc is the second most abundant mineral in the body after iron, with over 300 enzymes and 1000 transcription factors dependant on this essential micronutrient. It is involved in many cellular processes such as cell proliferation and differentiation, protein synthesis, gene transcription, nucleic acid metabolism and DNA synthesis.1

Zinc deficiency is common, with an estimated one quarter of the world’s population being deficient, often caused by poor dietary intake, low absorption and increased zinc loss.1 The best food sources of zinc can be found in meat, eggs and fish alongside plant-based options such as pumpkin seeds, legumes, cashew nuts, mushrooms and spinach.

In this article we take a closer look at zinc and explore its many benefits to health, including research findings, supplement forms and how to improve absorption.

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Last updated on 10th April 2024 by cytoffice

Stepping into spring: three mature women sat cross legged outdoors alongside a lake practising yoga.

10 wellbeing tips to step into spring

Spring has arrived. The time of year when the hibernation of winter draws to an end, and we can start to crawl out from under the duvet and unbatten the hatches.

In place of winter is the promise of lighter and brighter days and nights.  Nature has redecorated, and is blooming with spring flowers and awash with greener pastures.  If that wasn’t enough to lure us back out, the birds are singing and fields are enriched with new wild and farm animal life.

Spring is the season for renewal and new beginnings and, like nature, we too may feel the desire to shed our winter coats and dawn our spring attire.

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Last updated on 4th April 2024 by cytoffice

Menopause and insomnia: African mature women sat on the bed after a nights rest

Menopause and insomnia: why menopause affects sleep & the natural remedies that can help

Sleep is fundamental for health and regeneration and the healthy production and balance of hormones. Adults aged 18 to 64 need to sleep for 7 – 9 hours a night, but sleep disturbances are reported by nearly one third of the general population across all age groups, and further increase with advancing age, affecting nearly 50% of individuals over the age of 651. As they age, women are more likely to suffer with sleep disturbances such as insomnia, poor sleep quality and sleep deprivation than men.

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Last updated on 10th April 2024 by cytoffice

Histamine and seasonal allergies: mature woman knelt down watering her garden plants.

The role of histamine in seasonal allergies

Seasonal allergies such as hay fever, also known as allergic rhinitis, are common and becoming increasingly so, both in the UK and across the globe.

A recent study by Allergy UK revealed that 49% of the UK population have had symptoms of hay fever with it officially affecting between 10-15% of children and 26% of adults.

It may appear to some to be just an inconvenience with the need for extra tissues or antihistamines but hay fever can be debilitating and can also have a knock-on effect on other aspects of health.

Up to 57% of adult patients and 88% of children with allergic rhinitis have sleep problems, including micro-arousals, leading to daytime fatigue, somnolence, and decreased cognitive function.

As we begin to enter the spring and summer, it is an important time to consider interventions that may support a healthier response to allergens. This blog looks at the response of the body when exposed to allergens, how the immune system is affected and the influence that histamine plays as well as looking at natural interventions to help individuals before and during the hay fever season.

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Last updated on 13th March 2024 by cytoffice

Stylish 50 something woman in her kitchen holding a mug and phone researching whether antioxidants can help the immune system.

Antioxidants and your immune system – can they really help?

The interplay between the immune system, oxidative stress and nutrients that target both of these pathways is a popular topic, especially during the winter months. Modern life exposes us to increased toxins, pollution, nutritional deficiencies, stress, poor liver and digestive function and inflammation which all put additional stress on the immune system, often leaving it vulnerable to attack.

Antioxidants, including vitamins C and E, and phytochemicals including carotenoids and polyphenols have always been of interest in health for their role in the prevention of oxidative stress, inflammation and degenerative diseases. In this week’s article we are going to look closely into a range of antioxidants and how they play a key role in supporting the function of the immune system.

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Last updated on 10th April 2024 by cytoffice

In the news – health and nutrition research

In this week’s article we provide a roundup of some of the most recent health and nutrition related articles in the news, five items comprising:

  • A mix of cardio and strength training benefits cardiovascular health.
  • Supplements could play an important role in preserving cognitive functioning.
  • Higher intake of antioxidants linked to reduced pain.
  • Long-term weight gain less on a low-carb diet of plant-based wholefoods.
  • 2000IU of D3 suggested as optimal to prevent deficiency.

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Last updated on 10th April 2024 by cytoffice