Top Nutrients for Men’s Health

Both men and women benefit from eating healthy, balanced meals. However, men have slightly different nutritional needs that are important to address.

 

Zinc

Zinc is a vital nutrient in our bodies that helps with gene expression, immunity, wound healing, and protein production. Zinc is also involved in many aspects of male reproduction, including the production of testosterone and sperm formation.

 

Food sources:

  • Red meat
  • Shellfish (oysters, crab, shrimp)
  • Legumes (chickpeas, lentils, beans)
  • Fortified cereals

 

Potassium

Potassium is a key nutrient that maintains healthy nerve and muscle function, and controls blood pressure. Men are at higher risk of developing heart disease. However, a diet high in potassium may reduce hypertension and reduce the risk of heart disease, which is especially important for men as they age.

 

Food sources:

  • Bananas
  • Dark, leafy green vegetables (broccoli, spinach, kale)
  • Dried apricots and raisins
  • Potato, sweet potato, and squash
  • Legumes (lentils, soybeans, kidney beans)

 

Selenium

Selenium is an antioxidant, which helps protect cells from oxidative damage that occurs from our diet and our environment. Consuming foods high in selenium can improve heart and brain health, and improve male fertility. It may also help to prevent prostate cancer. It is recommended that selenium intake be from food sources as high doses of selenium from a supplement may have a potentially toxic effect.

 

Food sources:

  • Brazil nuts and cashews
  • Seafoods (tuna, halibut, sardine, shrimp)
  • Organ meats

 

Eating a variety of whole foods from each food group every day will help you to maximize the nutrients you are consuming. If you have any dietary restrictions or medical conditions that prevent you from eating certain foods, talk to your dietitian to learn how to ensure you are getting all the nutrients your body needs!

 

By

Marina Mansour

Registered Dietitian (Nutritionist)

 

June 9, 2021