Zinc Might Help Shorten Your Cold or Flu

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As you read further and further, you will gain more confidence to pop your zinc supplement when next you catch signs of common cold without a haunting feeling that questions your habit.

From research led by Jennifer Hunter, associate professor at the NICM Health Research Institute at Western Sydney University in Penrith, New South Wales., they reported the health benefit of zinc. Zinc supplements proved beneficial in shortening the course of respiratory tract infections: colds, flu, sinusitis and pneumonia.

The research claimed what gave zinc this attention is its known crucial role in immunity, inflammation, tissue injury, blood pressure and in tissue responses to any lack of oxygen.

The researchers looked at more than two dozen clinical trials involving over 5,400 participants to understand zinc’s potential. Until August 2020, none of them mainly looked into the use of zinc for COVID-19 prevention or treatment.

The research team said tablets were the most prevalent zinc intake, followed by nasal sprays and gels. The doses varied significantly depending on the formulation and whether zinc was used for prevention or treatment

It was observed that zinc lozenges or nasal spray prevent roughly five new respiratory tract infections in 100 participants each month compared to placebo. The effects are most substantial for reducing the risk of more severe symptoms like fever and flu-like sickness. The conclusions, however, are based on only three investigations, according to the team.

The data revealed that whether using a zinc spray or a liquid formulation took under the tongue (sublingual), symptoms cleared up two days faster than when using a placebo. The study authors reported that patients who used a nasal spray or sublingual zinc were nearly twice as likely to recover during the first week of sickness as those who used a placebo. If they didn’t take zinc supplements, 19 more patients out of 100 were likely to have symptoms still a week later.

The researchers discovered that while zinc was not linked to a reduction in average daily symptom severity, it was linked to a clinically meaningful reduction in symptom severity on the third day of illness.

In a nutshell, when you seek a quicker recovery or got tempted to ask for unnecessary antibiotics for your common cold, zinc is a good alternative for you to try.

Though Dr Len Horovitz, a pulmonologist at New York City’s Lenox Hill Hospital, was not part of researchers, he acknowledged using zinc supplements to prevent and treat colds, specific inflammatory processes, and respiratory infections.

The researchers concluded that there is no enough data yet to support the clinical efficacy of various zinc formulations, dosages, and routes of administration for a common cold treatment.

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