Keep your DNA from snapping in two with this miracle mineral
"It's not the years, honey. It's the mileage."
I love that line from Raiders of the Lost Ark. We tend to think of aging simply as time marching on... another birthday, another trip around the sun.
But when you get right down to it, the aging process isn't really about the number of candles on your birthday cake. Aging is more about the toll that those years take on your body -- the wear and tear that you feel not only in your joints, but also the damage you may not notice all the way down to the cellular level.
But according to a new study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, there's a miracle mineral that can slow down that aging process and keep your cells strong.
You see, your body works hard to repair the damage that naturally occurs in the DNA inside your cells; but as you get older, your cells tire out (just like you do).
That means they're less able to repair themselves -- and that makes you more vulnerable to infections and diseases.
Now, we know that zinc has the power to boost your overall health and prevent infections, but researchers recently found that upping your daily zinc intake can actually slow that DNA damage down.
And all it takes to reduce the breakage of your strands of DNA deep inside your cells is an increase of just 4 mg of zinc a day.
These findings make a lot of sense, if you consider how essential the mineral zinc is to so many bodily functions. It can keep your vital organs functioning properly... it can protect your eyes from macular degeneration... and, gentlemen, it can even help keep your prostate healthy.
It's also a great inflammation-fighter -- and, as you know, inflammation is frequently a root cause of a lot of the oxidative damage that occurs inside your body right down to the cellular level.
I try to avoid having my patients supplement with zinc, since too much of a good thing can actually be pretty bad here. But your doc may want to boost your intake, if you turn out to be deficient. (And zinc deficiency IS common among folks over the age of 55.)
Just don't try to go it alone when it comes to zinc -- unless, of course, you feel like you're coming down with a winter cold. In that case, some zinc lozenges can be a life-saver.
In general, you'll be getting enough of this miracle mineral if you eat a lot of Paleo-friendly foods that are rich in zinc -- like oysters, chicken, red meat, chick peas, and even yogurt.
Modest increase in dietary zinc reduces oxidative stress and damage to DNA, study shows