Tags: Coronavirus | Coronavirus Special | Health Topics | Vaccines | Cold/Flu | zinc | supplement

Zinc Helps Fight Colds But Not the Coronavirus

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By    |   Monday, 28 September 2020 06:46 PM

While zinc might be effective in fighting the common cold, there is no evidence it can help with the coronavirus.

Research has found taking zinc lozenges shorten the duration of the common cold by 33% –that is two days shorter than the normal week of sniffles. But although zinc, the second most common trace mineral in the body, affects every organ of the body and can also affect the immune system, scientists have no proof it can prevent or treat COVID-19.

"There's no scientific evidence that zinc or any vitamin or mineral or other dietary supplement can prevent of cure COVID-19," said Carol Haggans, a scientific and health communications consultant with the Office of Dietary Supplements at the National Institutes of Health, according to The New York Times.

The Food and Drug Administration sent letters to several companies that tout zinc as a COVID-19 cure to remove false claims about their products. The FDA has also warned consumers not to use nasal zinc sprays after many Americans claimed they lost their sense of smell.

However, sales of zinc have skyrocketed to an estimated $134 million during the pandemic, since many experts believe zinc deficiency can lower your immune response.

"It's very clear: If you are zinc deficient, your immune system will not function as well," said Dr. David Hafler, a world-renowned expert on multiple sclerosis and chair of the department of neurology and professor of immunology at Yale School of Medicine.

According to the Times, most Americans are not zinc deficient and only 15% might not be getting enough. The recommended daily allowance, or RDA, of zinc is 8 to 11 milligrams daily. Dietitians prefer you get zinc from food sources such as oysters, crab, lobster, nuts, and seeds. If you choose to take supplements, the upper limit for adults is 40 milligrams daily.

Experts told the Times, adverse effects of zinc include nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, diarrhea, headaches, and abdominal cramps. Zinc can also interact with other supplements, such as calcium, to it is advisable to take them two hours apart.

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While zinc might be effective in fighting the common cold, there is no evidence it can help with the coronavirus.
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Monday, 28 September 2020 06:46 PM
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