Research Blog

July 30, 2021

COVID-19: Targeted Nutrition Support - Zinc

Targeted nutrition support in COVID-19: In sync with zinc

Dicken Weatherby, N.D. and Beth Ellen DiLuglio, MS, RDN, LDN

The ODX COVID-19 Series

  1. COVID-19: The pandemic that has become endemic
  2. COVID-19: Overlapping risk factors and chronic disease
  3. Nutritional status COVID-19: A covert factor in disease susceptibility
  4. COVID-19: Blood chemistry biomarker patterns - Clues and patterns lurking just under the surface
  5. COVID-19: Blood chemistry biomarker patterns - Down the research rabbit hole
  6. COVID-19: Blood Biomarkers - Neutrophils
  7. COVID-19: Blood Biomarkers - Albumin
  8. COVID-19: BloodBiomarkers - Cytokines
  9. COVID-19: Blood Biomarkers - Interleukin-6
  10. COVID-19: Blood Biomarkers - Interleukin-10
  11. COVID-19: Blood Biomarkers - Vitamin C
  12. COVID-19: Blood Biomarkers - Vitamin D
  13. COVID-19: Blood Biomarkers - Zinc
  14. Biomarker characteristics and blood type - help sharpen the COVID-19 clinical picture
  15. COVID-19: Initial indications and conventional interventions
  16. COVID-19: Long-term risk reduction - Naturopathic, functional medicine, and nutrition-based approaches to prevention
  17. A healthy diet is primary prevention for COVID-19
  18. You should have a gut feeling about COVID-19
  19. Beyond dietary food patterns…plant-based compounds may mitigate COVID-19 risk
  20. Targeted nutrition support in the battle against COVID-19
  21. Targeted nutrition support in COVID-19: Armed with vitamin C
  22. Targeted nutrition support in COVID-19: In sync with zinc
  23. Targeted nutrition support in COVID-19: Micronutrients and phytonutrients are important players
  24. Optimal Takeaways for improving immunity and reducing susceptibility to COVID-19
  25. Optimal - The Podcast: Episode 8 -Blood Biomarkers and Risk Factors for COVID-19 and its Comorbidities

Zinc is able to inhibit coronavirus replication and may have some therapeutic benefit if administered early in the infection.[i] Zinc may also be efficacious as adjuvant therapy to chloroquine-based drugs which help increase intracellular zinc where zinc, in turn, drug efficacy. However, long-term high-dose zinc is not recommended due to potential side effects including copper deficiency, anemia, reduction of HDL, and potential genitourinary consequences.[ii]

A 2000 randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial involving 48 subjects evaluated the effect of ~80 mg of elemental zinc on cold symptom duration. A dose of 12.8 mg of elemental zinc in the form of zinc acetate lozenges was taken every 2-3 hours while awake for 4-5 days. The supplemented group experienced significantly fewer days with symptoms, with an average duration of 4.5 days versus 8.1 days in the unsupplemented group.[iii]

Pay close attention to zinc competency when evaluating risk or severity of COVID-19.

Next Up - Targeted nutrition support in COVID-19: Micronutrients & Phytonutrients


[i] McCullough, Peter A et al. “Pathophysiological Basis and Rationale for Early Outpatient Treatment of SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Infection.” The American journal of medicine vol. 134,1 (2021): 16-22. doi:10.1016/j.amjmed.2020.07.003 

[ii] Rahman, Mohammad Tariqur, and Syed Zahir Idid. “Can Zn Be a Critical Element in COVID-19 Treatment?.” Biological trace element research vol. 199,2 (2021): 550-558. doi:10.1007/s12011-020-02194-9

[iii] Prasad, A S et al. “Duration of symptoms and plasma cytokine levels in patients with the common cold treated with zinc acetate. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.” Annals of internal medicine vol. 133,4 (2000): 245-52. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-133-4-200008150-00006

Tag(s): Nutrients

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