Advertisement

What kind of zinc should I take to treat a cold?

Jill A. Grimes, MD
Family Medicine
To reduce the duration of a cold, you should take zinc lozenges containing ionic zinc. The vast majority of zinc products do not have this type of zinc. Taking zinc supplements in pill form doesn't work either, so don't be fooled into swallowing yet another pill.

The medical literature about whether zinc lozenges can significantly reduce the duration of the common cold is conflicting, with roughly half of the studies showing benefit, and half appearing equal to placebo, but it turns out ionic zinc may be the key ingredient.

In 2009, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a warning that intranasal zinc preparations had the potential to cause permanent loss of smell, so they are no longer recommended.

Continue Learning about Minerals

Carotenoids: The Calcium Side Your Bones Crave
Carotenoids: The Calcium Side Your Bones Crave
Keep your skeleton strong and fracture-free by serving that calcium supplement with a healthy salad on the side. Salad? Yep, salad. A 4-year study fo...
Read More
How does cobalt affect the body?
Stacy Wiegman, PharmDStacy Wiegman, PharmD
Cobalt is used in the body to help absorb and process vitamin B12. In addition, cobalt helps tre...
More Answers
How can I take cobalt?
Stacy Wiegman, PharmDStacy Wiegman, PharmD
Cobalt is part of the vitamin B12 molecule. You can take cobalt through several different means....
More Answers
Selenium Keeps You Young
Selenium Keeps You Young

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.