Get over colds faster thanks to a combination of zinc and vitamin C
Since the summer is on its last legs, and cold viruses are lurking again, we read an older study by the research department of chemical group Bayer. The researchers gave several dozen cold patients a gram of vitamin C and 10 milligrams of zinc, and saw that this combination shortened the healing process by days.
Zinc & colds
If you've been hit by a serious cold, zinc supplementation will get you out of bed more than two days earlier. This is shown in a recent meta-study published by researchers at the National University of Singapore in the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. [Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2020 Jul;103(1):86-99.] Those findings are consistent with those of a Finnish meta-study, which we wrote about in 2011.
Vitamin C & colds
Another nutrient that studies have shown can help cure a bad cold is vitamin C. [Nutrients. 2017 Mar 29;9(4):339.]
It should be fair to say that there are also studies in which supplementation with vitamin C has little effect. [Medwave. 2018 Oct 3;18(6):e7261.]
But what happens if you have a cold and combine vitamin C and zinc? The answer can be found in a human study that researchers at the chemical group Bayer published in the Journal of International Medical Research in 2012.
Bayer produces Redoxon, an effervescent tablet preparation that supplies 1000 milligrams and 10 milligrams of zinc in the form of zinc citrate per tab. In their article, the researchers describe the effect of Redoxon on people with a cold.
The researchers drew their data from two trials, both conducted by French doctors in the late 1990s. A total of 94 people suffering from with a bad cold participated in the trials. The subjects took a placebo or Redoxon every day for a period of 5-10 days.
When the researchers put the data from the two trials together, they saw that supplementation with vitamin C and zinc shortened the number of days that the subjects had a runny nose.
The supplement did not affect the number of days the subjects experienced symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, sore throat and headache.
"Together, these findings indicate that high dose vitamin C plus zinc could make a tangible contribution to improving quality of life and speeding up recovery in patients with symptoms of the common cold," the researchers write.
J Int Med Res. 2012;40(1):28-42.
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