Zinc is an essential mineral that is involved in numerous aspects of cellular metabolism. It is required for the catalytic activity of almost one hundred enzymes, and supports immune function, protein synthesis, and wound healing. Zinc plays an especially important role in supporting normal growth and development during pregnancy, childhood, and adolescence. A daily intake of zinc is required to maintain a steady state because the body has no specialized zinc storage system. The best dietary sources of zinc are animal proteins, including beef, pork, and lamb, but fish, nuts, whole grains, legumes, and yeast also contain some zinc.Plant-sourced zinc in supplements is a gentler and more nourishing alternative to synthetic zinc supplements that can sometimes have a metallic aftertaste. Most commercially available zinc supplements are available as synthetic isolates (lab-created); amino acid chelates (minerals bound to amino acids for enhanced bioavailability); or whole-food/food-sourced nutrients (sourced from organic food sources).