Zinc is a mineral that the body uses to perform several functions. There are many dietary forms of zinc, and one of them is zinc picolinate. It is also the primary component of the body’s metabolism. Zinc serves as a substrate in many biochemical processes within the body, and a lack of zinc in the diet can lead to disruption of these functions.
Picolinic acid occurs naturally in our body and acts as a chelator. It is the most efficient chelator for metals such as chromium, zinc, manganese, copper, iron, and probably molybdenum. Picolinic acid is formed from tryptophan, an amino acid. Picolinic acid is produced in the liver and then leads to the pancreas. During digestion, it is part of the secretion mixed with ingested food to facilitate these minerals’ absorption.
When zinc is chelated with picolinate amino acids, our body forms zinc picolinate.
Absorption of zinc picolinate
The absorption of zinc in the body is a complex process that involves passing through intestinal membranes, bloodstream, and individual cells. Zinc picolinate is a well-absorbed form of zinc in the body. Compared with zinc citrate and zinc gluconate, which are known to be useful and chelated forms of zinc. All three were tested relative to each other for human use, and zinc absorption was improved when combined with picolinic acid.
What are the functions of zinc in the body?
The body uses zinc to perform many biochemical processes. The body uses zinc to perform various enzymatic functions, especially catalytic in nature. It has also been found to impact the immune system, protein synthesis, wound healing, DNA synthesis, and cell division.
During pregnancy, childhood, and adolescence, zinc has been found to support normal growth and development. It has also been found to allow the senses of taste and smell to function properly.
Advantages of zinc picolinate
- It acts as a general booster of immunity
- Enhances neurotrophic factor of brain origin
- Improves learning and memory
- Fight against colds
- Helps heal wounds
- It reduces depression
- It helps control acne problems
- Helps expose lead
- Provides the required amounts of zinc
- Reduces the risk of prostate cancer
- It helps prevent and treat liver disease and cirrhosis.
- Reduces the risk of chronic diseases associated with aging
- It helps prevent age-related macular degeneration.
- It improves fertility in men.
- Shortens the duration of diarrhea
Functions of zinc picolinate as a general enhancer of immunity
Zinc picolinate serves as an immune booster because it strengthens molecules that can fight diseases, such as tumor alpha necrosis factor or TNF. This is possible because zinc affects the level of leptin (a key factor in the regulation of energy needs, appetite, and metabolism) within the body’s circulation, increasing TNF production.
Zinc is known to play a central role in the human immune system. People who lack zinc at the appropriate body levels can easily become prey to various pathogens that cause diseases. Zinc mediates several functions within the immune system, such as lymphocytes and macrophages, through its myriad roles in cellular activities such as DNA replication, RNA transcription, and cell activation.
Zinc picolinate enhances levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the body
Studies show that zinc picolinate can increase the level of BDNF in the body. Zinc supplementation improved the mood of the subjects. BDNF levels are also associated with good brain development leading to better memory and learning.
Zinc picolinate improves learning and memory
According to a study he did at the University of Toronto, which was published in the journal Neuron, zinc can play a key role in how neurons communicate and communicate with each other. This implies how memory is formed and the process by which we learn.
Zinc picolinate helps treat colds
Zinc-containing tablets can shorten the duration of a cold by as much as 40 percent, according to a study published in The Open Respiratory Medicine Journal from 2011 years. The conclusion is that the shorter course of the common cold was due to large amounts of zinc.
Another study, published in The Cochrane Review of Systematic Reviews, shows that zinc taken either in the form of syrup or tablet shows advantages when it comes to the shorter duration and severity of colds in healthy people taken within 24 hours of the onset of symptoms.
Zinc Picolinate helps in wound healing
Zinc helps maintain the integrity and structure of the skin. It has been observed that people suffering from metabolic disorders caused by zinc deficiency or people with low zinc levels for any reason often experienced the appearance of chronic wounds and ulcers on the skin. Many medications for diaper rash and other skin irritations list zinc as a primary component or supplement.
One study showed that zinc could improve re-epithelialization, reduce inflammation, and reduce bacteria’s development, which can improve ulceration on the legs. Topical application of zinc agents to wounds can reduce zinc deficiency within the affected area and produce pharmacological effects.
Zinc picolinate helps reduce depression
The presence of zinc picolinate reduces the symptoms of depression through the interaction of BDNF with serotonin in certain parts of the body. In a previous study, the symptoms of depression in obese subjects were reduced, which leads to an overall improvement in mood.
With the use of SSRI antidepressants (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors), the addition of zinc has shown better results in improving major depressive disorders compared with treatment using SSRI given with placebo.
Zinc picolinate helps control acne problems
Zinc is thought to act directly on redness and swelling caused by acne by acting on the microbiological inflammatory balance. When used in combination with an antibiotic, zinc can facilitate antibiotics’ absorption.
Zinc picolinate helps with lead exposure
In lead toxicity experiments, zinc and thiamine, alone or in combination, have been shown to be effective in reducing the accumulation of lead in the blood, liver and kidneys.
Provides the need for zinc, especially for pregnant women
Zinc supplementation is recommended for growth and development during pregnancy, childhood, and adolescence. There is a physiological drop in zinc levels during pregnancy, so pregnant women are prescribed supplements to prevent any complications due to reduced zinc levels within the body. It also provides support for the child’s development.
It reduces the risk of developing advanced prostate cancer
Studies have shown that long-term supplemental zinc intake may reduce the risk of developing clinically relevant advanced disease. No evidence has been found that additional zinc could reduce the risk of prostate cancer, but it does reduce the risk of developing regional invasive or metastatic prostate cancer.
There is growing evidence to support claims that zinc plays an integral role in keeping the prostate healthy. Zinc appears to help prevent prostate tumor growth. Zinc creates an environment that seems toxic to cancer cells inside the prostate, thus preventing malignancy development.
The risk of developing advanced prostate cancer showed a reduction of 60 percent when there was an intake of more than 15 mg of zinc. Higher dietary zinc intake is also associated with a reduced risk of dying from prostate cancer and increased protection among localized prostate tumors.
Zinc picolinate helps prevent and treat liver disease and cirrhosis
Zinc levels in humans reduce liver disease development ease, and studies show that supplementation can restore zinc deficiency’s clinical signs. Zinc supplementation can also improve liver function in certain diseases.
Reduce the risk of chronic diseases associated with aging with zinc picolinate
You can avoid inflammatory diseases by improving zinc intake. A study from the University of Oregon found that you can reduce the risk of inflammatory diseases by increasing zinc intake through diet and supplements. For decades, we have known that zinc plays a significant role in keeping the immune system functioning optimally and that a lack of this essential element can lead to increased inflammation in chronic diseases and can lead to new inflammatory processes.
Zinc picolinate helps prevent age-related macular degeneration (AMD)
A study published in the Archives of Ophthalmology indicates that zinc prevents retinal degradation by preventing cell damage. This stops the progression of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a condition that leads to vision loss.
Zinc has been shown to improve fertility in men
Low sperm quality is associated with low levels of zinc in the body. One study conducted in the Netherlands found that subjects who used zinc sulfate and folic acid supplements increased sperm in the sample. Another study concluded that low zinc intake could lead to poor sperm quality and male infertility.
Zinc can also increase testosterone levels. A study involving elite wrestlers who took zinc supplements for four weeks with their regular diet found that they had significantly higher levels of total and free testosterone after rest and strenuous training compared to the period before taking the supplements. The results suggest that zinc supplementation may prevent the inhibition of testosterone levels.
People who do not do extreme sports can benefit from increased zinc intake and supplementation. In a study conducted among men aged 20 to 80, those who restricted zinc intake had a significant drop in testosterone levels. In contrast, those who took zinc supplements (older people with marginally reduced zinc levels) had increased testosterone levels, leading to conclude that zinc plays an important role in testosterone levels among average men.
Due to the possibility of zinc affecting testosterone levels, you also considered its role in sexual health and libido. When testosterone levels increase, sexual health and sex drive improve. Zinc can reduce erectile dysfunction, which is a secondary consequence of low testosterone levels.
In patients with kidney disease, who experience sexual dysfunction, it has been found that the use of zinc supplements increases testosterone levels and improves the potency and frequency of sexual intercourse.
Zinc picolinate shortens the duration of infectious diarrhea
It has been established that zinc supplementation among patients with infectious diarrhea leads to a faster recovery time from the disease. In addition to shortening the disease’s duration, it has been determined that zinc supplementation also reduces the severity of the disease.
A recent study aimed at increasing the use of zinc to treat diarrhea in children found that taking pills for 10 days effectively solved the problem of diarrhea and that this supplement can help prevent the recurrence of the disease.
How to ingest zinc picolinate
The human body does not have a specialized storage system, so a daily intake is recommended to meet the body’s needs. Zinc can be combined with iron when hematological problems are solved. You can also combine it with vitamin C or any multivitamin. In most cases, zinc is a component of any multivitamin formulation on the market.
You should maintain sufficient zinc to increase the potential of zinc or enhance the desired effects. Combined preparations that complement you can use zinc functions, or those that can create a synergistic effect, which increases the activity of zinc, or vice versa, or preferably both.
How zinc picolinate is prepared and taken (correct dose)
The levels of recommended daily values (RDA) and levels of adequate intake (AI) are indicated here. Recommended daily values are based on scientific research evidence, while levels of adequate intake are determined by the authorities when there is insufficient evidence to develop an RDA.
For babies (AI)
0 to 6 months: 2 milligrams daily (mg/day)
7 to 12 months: 3 milligrams daily (mg/day)
For children (RDA)
7 to 12 months: 3 milligrams daily (mg/day)
1 to 3 years: 3 milligrams daily (mg/day)
4 to 8 years: 5 milligrams daily (mg/day)
9 to 13 years: 8 milligrams daily (mg/day)
For adolescents and adults (RDA)
Men 14 years and older: 11 milligrams daily (mg/day)
Women 14 to 18 years of age: 9 milligrams daily (mg/day)
Women 19 years of age and older: 8 milligrams per day (mg/day)
Pregnant women, aged 19 and over: 11 milligrams per day (mg/day)
Lactating women, 19 years and older: 12 milligrams daily (mg/day)
Red meat and poultry provide most of the required zinc values in the average diet. you can also obtain zinc from beans, nuts, whole grains, and dairy products.
Side effects of zinc picolinate
Oral forms of zinc intake are largely safe; however, they can block the absorption of copper, leading to the development of anemia.
Taking high amounts of zinc is unsafe. High doses that exceed the recommended permitted values can cause the following adverse effects:
– Decreased number of white blood cells
– Vomiting / Feeling nauseous
– Stomach pain
Care should be taken when taking zinc supplements because overdoses can lead to a decrease in the absorption of copper, which also plays a vital role in the body.
Besides, it is suspected that increased zinc levels can lead to kidney stones. Additional research is being conducted in this field.
Zinc deficiency and precautions
Zinc deficiency is usually a consequence of insufficient dietary intake. In some cases, it can be a consequence of malabsorption and chronic diseases. Some of the signs and symptoms of zinc deficiency are:
– Loss of appetite
– Slow wound healing
– Skin condition
– Abnormal taste and smell
– Hair loss
– Difficult or prolonged labor in pregnant women
How and where to buy zinc picolinate
Zinc picolinate is available at local grocery and health food stores. It may not be the usual form of zinc on the market. Still, it is known to be the most available and useful due to its effects of strengthening immunity and improving the organism’s condition. Reliable online sellers also offer zinc picolinate from reliable manufacturers. If you cannot buy zinc supplements from local suppliers or at the local market or pharmacies, you can contact online stores.
Summary (Most important details about zinc picolinate)
- Zinc picolinate is an essential mineral that is needed for good health. Adequate amounts of zinc should be consumed from a balanced diet and/or supplementation to reap the health benefits zinc offers.
- Zinc is a substrate in many biochemical processes within the body that results in many benefits that include: improved immunity, improved brain function – including memory and learning, shortens cold durations, improves wound healing, improves mood and fights depression, helps control acne, helps in the management of lead toxicity, prevents the development of prostate tumors, prevents liver disease and cirrhosis, prevents the development of chronic diseases associated with aging, improves male sexual function and shortens the duration of the disease in patients with diarrhea.
- You can purchase zinc at any pharmacy within the local market. You can also purchase it through trusted online retailers.