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Is zinc beneficial to patients with Covid-19?

Is zinc beneficial to patients with Covid-19?

Zinc is one of the various micronutrients that have garnered momentum across the globe due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. However, as you continue to swallow it, we bring you the latest guidelines about its significance when treating Covid-19.

Experts have conducted several studies to assess the efficacy of zinc among Covid-19 patients, and the current results are equivocal. Therefore, they neither recommend for or against zinc utilisation when afflicted by Covid-19.

Whether you decide to use it or not, it’s imperative to know that your daily zinc requirements are 11mg (men) and 8mg (women). Any excess may be deleterious to your body. It is paramount hitherto that you ascertain how much elemental zinc does the tablet you pick over-the-counter contain.

Velthuis et al. report that when coronaviruses take up zinc within the cells, it impairs their ability to replicate. When combined with chloroquine, zinc potentiates programmed cell death (apoptosis). Because it is a component of various proteins including, metalloenzymes and nucleic acids, its levels are impervious to determine.

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Zinc deficiency distracts many biological functions. However, its excess is no good either. Prolonged use may deplete copper. Copper deficiency may culminate in reduced blood levels (anaemia) and white cell counts (leukopenia), in addition to a few neurologic deficits like movements disorders. It is noteworthy that when taken orally, it decreases the absorption of drugs that bind polyvalent cations. Such drugs may include raltegravir and dolutegravir (integrase inhibitors).

Whether supplementation is beneficial to patients with Covid-19 or not, the available evidence is too limited to draw clear-cut conclusions. It is probably safe if you use it with caution under the guidance of a qualified health care provider.

And when you decide to use it, do not take more than one tablet that contains 20mg of elemental zinc. You are possibly safe having a balanced diet because various foods contain enough micronutrient for your body needs, i.e., pumpkins.


Dr A. M. Ssekandi is a medical officer, researcher, content creator, author, and founder of He does private practice with a public touch. He is a certified digital marketer. He has earned certificates in Understanding Clinical Research and Writing in Sciences from the University of Cape Town and Stanford University respectively. He also has a certificate of Good Clinical Practice from

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