Do You Really Need It?
Zinc is very misunderstood and the majority of people feel like they should take it. Although supplements are marketed for their benefits, there can also be some harmful effects to taking something your body does not need. We have had patients come in, write down the current supplements they are taking, and find out they wrote down zinc. The problem with zinc is its recent push for taking this daily across the board. However, we are all individually created which requires an individual plan for tackling health issues and prevention plans.
Zinc is incredibly important for your overall immune function, how your body functions, and how your body creates hormones. The only reason to take zinc is if your body is truly deficient in the amount of zinc it produces. If you are taking too much, you could actually be creating a toxic overload within your body.
Easy At-Home Test
There are a couple of ways to find out if you have a zinc deficiency. One way is not 100% reliable, nor is it a clinical standard, but it is easy to do from home. You can buy a liquid form of zinc, put one milligram (a few drops) into the water, mix it up, and taste it. If the taste is exactly the taste of water, there is a high chance you are zinc deficient. Now if you taste this and it tastes like metal, there is a high chance you are NOT zinc deficient. Some other side effects of taking zinc when you do not need it would be nausea, dizziness, and an upset stomach after taking it. This test is something you can do periodically to stay in tune with what your body needs.
A more accurate way to test if you are zinc deficient would be blood work. If you ask your doctor for a blood test, request your zinc serum and plasma levels to be tested. (If you don’t have a doctor to do this, we can help you connect with one.) Another blood test you could do is called alkaline phosphate. If this is tested and the levels are low, there is a good chance you are zinc deficient. If your results clearly show that you are zinc deficient, consult with your wellness provider to find out the exact amount that is right for your body.
Find a True Source
The type of zinc you take is also vitally important. Let’s say you do the water test and it tastes like water, but you get blood work to double-check and find out you are deficient. In this case, you would need to find a high-quality zinc supplement to assist your body. The one we recommend is the one from The Wellness Way. The reason we recommend this brand is because the ingredients used come from oysters. Oysters have a good spectrum of zinc. The ingredient list states 500 milligrams of oyster meat powder, which means the supplement is all-natural. The Wellness Way brand is also not a synthetic version of zinc like most other supplements that are advertised.