by Dr Chris Reinhardt
If we could get trace minerals into the animal’s cells at a greater rate than by just feeding conventional inorganic trace minerals alone, animal health and performance can be radically enhanced.
Not all cells throughout an animal’s body have the same trace mineral requirements, and the requirements within a given cell do not stay the same day to day or even minute to minute. For example, when a virus attempts to invade the body, various cells throughout the body signal the activation of the immune system to defeat the viral invasion. Those immune cells must rapidly increase production of various proteins to kill the virus; hence increasing their trace mineral requirement. Another example is the production of milk at calving. When a cow calves, her mammary glands are signaled to begin lactation. The cells of the mammary tissue suddenly have an increased trace mineral requirement to start the milk production process. The trace mineral requirement for an animal is, therefore, an accumulated average of all the different, and ever-changing, requirements of all the cells throughout the animal’s body.
When feeding inorganic trace minerals such as sulfides, oxides, or hydroxy minerals, the body makes use of inorganic trace mineral transporters to move the minerals from the intestinal lumen to the cellular level. These minerals dissociate in the rumen or abomasum and are absorbed in their ionic form from the intestinal lumen, relying on inorganic transporters (such as the ZIP transporter group).
As cellular functions, such as muscle growth, reproduction, and milk production increase, the cellular need for specific nutrients, such as trace minerals and/or amino acids, also increases to fulfil the increased production demand. The cells quickly respond to this increased need for specific nutrients by increasing the number of transporters (such as mineral transporters or amino acid transporters) on the cell surface to take in more nutrients into the cell from the circulating blood stream. Cells respond in the same way when the immune system is activated, increasing cellular nutrient demand and upregulating amino acid and mineral transporters. However, the sudden and dramatic increase in demand by the cell for trace minerals may be even greater than the supply of trace minerals available within the cell using only inorganic transporters. This limitation puts a so-called ‘ceiling’ on potential productivity by the cell.
Because the Zinpro complex contains a single trace mineral ion (such as zinc, copper, manganese, or chromium) complexed to essential amino acids in a highly stable, five-membered ring, the cell is able to transport the needed mineral into the cell, using the now-increased number of amino acid transporters present and active on the cell surface. By having both the amino acid transporters as well as conventional inorganic trace mineral transporters available to transport the much-needed trace minerals into the cell, the cell can increase the total amount of trace minerals available within the cell to carry out myriad critical cellular metabolic functions; well above the amount of trace minerals available within the cell when only inorganic trace minerals are fed.
This effectively ‘raises the ceiling’ of production by the cell, allowing cells throughout the body to function at a much greater capacity to respond to ever-changing biological demands for growth, reproduction, milk production, and fighting disease.
Our best recommendation is to feed inorganic trace minerals to meet the baseline needs of the animal, and to feed Zinpro Performance Minerals to increase health and performance. Feeding Zinpro Performance Minerals gets more essential trace minerals into the cells of the body when they are responding to greater production and immunity demand signals by the body. This ‘raises the biological cellular ceiling’, freeing the body to operate at its full genetic potential for growth, immune function, reproduction, and milk production.