Interest in zinc has progressively built since the 90s, where it’s role in supporting immunity and enhancing hormonal status began to be recognized. Focus has increased gradually in this time to reach a fever pitch during the COVID-19 chaos, as worried individuals look for proven methods to increase resistance against respiratory infections.
Along with elderberry and Vitamin C, Zinc has been one of the most-quoted recommendations. And the reasons for such high regard are quite simple:
- 1984 study gave subjects 23mg of zinc gluconate (lozenge) and tracked them for six months, finding a massive 45% drop in infections
- a 2018 study in Bangladesh showed children with respiratory infections had dramatically lower zinc status (25μmol vs 55μmol)
- zinc inhibits viral entry into cells and viral replication and also enhances function of the immune system (via increased activity of macrophages and Th1 cytokines)