The body doesn’t readily store zinc, so you need to get some every day—but only a small amount. The recommended daily allowance (RDA) is 8 mg per day for women. That number rises to 11 mg for pregnant women, and 12 mg for nursing mothers. Meanwhile, vegetarians may need to take in as much as 50% more than the RDA—the body absorbs less zinc from plant-based foods than from meat sources (a term called bioavailability).
Others at risk of deficiency: People who have had GI surgery (such as lap band) or who have digestive disorders like Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis.
To make sure you’re consuming enough of this crucial nutrient, enjoy more of these zinc-rich foods in your diet.