View Full Version : Zinc Deficiency Challenge Diary


jiffyPOP
05-23-12, 03:11 PM
JiffyPOP Zinc Deficiency Challenge Diary


First, I recommend talking to your doctor before starting any supplement program. My GP doctor gave me the A-OK to test my Zinc levels through the “Zinc challenge” taste test. I asked him at the end of my last session and he said this method has been in use for some time and used by many doctors as a quick check. He said, maybe we will draw blood next time if the taste test points towards deficient.

Just in case anybody else is interested in determining if they are Zinc deficient, I will keep a log of my activity here. It is well known that many ADHDers are Zinc deficient and might benefit from supplementation (Rucklidge et al 2009). I will not go into those details here, that is what Google is for :). Or you can quickly learn about Zinc and ADHD here: 10 Ways Zinc Can Help ADHDers (http://adhd-treatment-options.blogspot.com/2009/04/10-ways-zinc-can-combat-adhd.html)

The zinc “taste test” has proven to be effective in determining Zinc serum levels. “Accuracy of zinc taste test in individual cases ranged between 70 and 100 percent. On the whole, zinc taste test was well correlated with serum zinc level, and provides a fair idea of zinc deficiency (Garg et al 1993).”
In essence, one can subjectively determine their own zinc levels by tasting Zinc in a liquid formula. This is obviously not as precise as blood serum, nor does it need to be as precise for my needs.

Here is the protocol I followed:
How the test is done.
2 teaspoons of Zinc Challenge (designs for health brand) is held in the mouth for 30 seconds after which it is swallowed as supplement. 2 tablespoons = 8mg of Zinc (~50% recommended daily allowance)

The defined standards are:
1. No specific taste: tastes like plain water. This indicates a major deficiency of zinc

2. No immediate taste is noticed but, sometime within the 30 seconds of the test, a 'dry' or 'metallic' taste is experienced. Some people describe it as ‘like baking soda’ or sometimes like ‘hydrogen peroxide’ taste. This indicates a moderate deficiency. The Zinc Challenge directions states that the longer it takes to taste the Zinc, the more deficient one is.

3. An immediate slight but not necessarily unpleasant taste is noted, which builds up over the 30 second period. This indicates a deficiency of minor degree.

4. An immediate, strong and unpleasant taste is experienced. The patient generally wants to rinse his mouth out. This indicates that no zinc deficiency exists.

Note - It is possible that dental amalgam fillings in the mouth, which contain some amount of mercury, can cause the zinc test may be less precise. The zinc liquid plus mercury might cause a nasty, metallic taste in the mouth in spite of the zinc deficiency in the body.

Works Cited

1993 Garg HK, Singal KC, Arshad Z (October 1993).
Zinc taste test in pregnant women and its correlation with serum zinc level. Indian J. Physiol. Pharmacol. 37 (4): 318–22

2009 Rucklidge JJ, Johnstone J, Kaplan BJ.
Nutrient supplementation approaches in the treatment of ADHD. Expert Rev Neurother. 2009 Apr;9(4):461-76.

http://www.diabetesexplained.com/zinc-diagnostic-test.html

jiffyPOP
05-23-12, 03:24 PM
Day 1:
After a 10 day wait, I finally received Zinc Challenge in the mail, first thing in the morning. I am testing zinc levels in the AM, so I did not eat or drink for 10 hours before the test.

I am using iPhone stop watch to time the 30 second period of the oral taste test, and pencil paper to record the time periods.

0-10 seconds: no taste

10-18 seconds: very light baking soda taste, slightly sweet.

18-30 seconds: no taste

Results: Category 2, a moderate deficiency in Zinc

Slo-mo a-go-go
05-23-12, 08:25 PM
interesting, please keeping updating, I'm interested to hear more. Have you ever taken zinc supplements before?

jiffyPOP
05-23-12, 09:54 PM
interesting, please keeping updating, I'm interested to hear more. Have you ever taken zinc supplements before?

Hi, thanks for replying. No, I have never taking Zinc supplements. However, my saw Palmetto (GNC brand) has 7.5mg Zinc. However, I always forget to take saw Palmetto. Otherwise, no zinc supplement EXCEPT 5mg Zinc in the the sublingual B6 which I just started today along with the Zinc Challenge.

So if I remember to take Saw Palmetto, B6, and Zinc Challenge, that is 20.5mg Zinc supplement per day. RDA recommendations I have found are between 11-15mg.

Drewbacca
05-24-12, 12:08 AM
Hi, thanks for replying. No, I have never taking Zinc supplements. However, my saw Palmetto (GNC brand) has 7.5mg Zinc. However, I always forget to take saw Palmetto. Otherwise, no zinc supplement EXCEPT 5mg Zinc in the the sublingual B6 which I just started today along with the Zinc Challenge.


I always load up on the zinc and vit. C during flu season to keep the buggies away! :P

Thanks for sharing your experiment, we need more of that sort of thing here. I think I'm going to try and make a point to update my diary/blog once a week just on principle.

jiffyPOP
05-24-12, 01:02 PM
Day 2:

I am using iPhone stop watch to time the 30 second period of the oral taste test, and pencil paper to record the time periods.

Zinc supplements in last 24 hours: 20.5mg Zinc

0-7 seconds: no taste

7-12 seconds: very light baking soda taste, slightly sweet. Less obvious taste than yesterday. Very faint taste.

12-24 seconds: no taste

24-30 seconds: metallic taste, zinc came in contact with dental filling when swished over my teeth.

Results: Category 2, a moderate deficiency in Zinc

Possibly a slight improvement over day 1 due to onset of taste 3 seconds earlier.

jiffyPOP
05-25-12, 11:31 AM
Day 2 PM (second test of the day):

I decided to test my Zinc late in the day prior to bed

0-5 seconds: no taste

5-30 seconds: dry hydrogen peroxide taste, more harsh

13-30 seconds: taste dissipates but lingers

Results: Category 2, a moderate deficiency in Zinc

Indicates improvement in Zinc levels, however still Category 2. Taste is harsher and onset of taste quicker

jiffyPOP
05-25-12, 11:37 AM
Day 3:

I am using iPhone stop watch to time the 30 second period of the oral taste test, and pencil paper to record the time periods.

Zinc supplements in last 24 hours: 26 mg Zinc

0-7 seconds: no taste

7-12 seconds: Dry baking soda taste, less sweet. Taste becoming harsher.

13-30 seconds: taste dissipates but lingers until 30 seconds.

Results: Category 2, a moderate deficiency in Zinc

jiffyPOP
05-25-12, 11:57 PM
Day 3 PM (second test of the day):

I decided to test my Zinc late in the day prior to bed.

0-30 seconds: Immediate slight dry taste, persisted through all 30 seconds. (next time I will only swish it for 15 seconds if taste immediately!)


Results: Category 3, deficiency of minor degree

Note: It is possible that I have higher levels in the PM than in the AM.

jiffyPOP
05-26-12, 01:49 PM
Day 4 AM:

Zinc supplements in last 24 hours: 21 mg Zinc

0-30 seconds: Immediate slight dry taste, increased while swishing in mouth.


Results: Category 3, deficiency of minor degree

jiffyPOP
06-02-12, 06:41 PM
Day 11:

UPDATE: Sorry for the slow update. For the past 7 days, I have taken 21mg - 26mg Zinc per day. I have bounced between category 2 and 3 every day. I have not been able to reach category 1 on the zinc challenge. I am considering getting additional Zinc supplement and taking 2x the dose for a period of 5-7 days and then re-testing.

Zinc supplements in last 24 hours: 21 mg Zinc

0-7 seconds: no taste

7-12 seconds: Dry baking soda taste, less sweet. Taste becoming harsher.


Results: Category 2, a moderate deficiency in Zinc

Nonzens
11-28-13, 01:51 PM
Huh, really interesting... I wanna do this but debating due to cost. Can I ask for this at the doctor's office and would Medicaid cover it without demonstrated need?

dresser
11-30-13, 11:52 AM
thank you Jiffypop, great job well done. there is a lot to keep track and at the same time stay impartial . I would have just probably started popping zince tabs till I felt a difference. I will maybe copy your trip N use it as a guide to duplicate it, if I do I will post it . have you felt/noticed any improvements or changes???? in your mental/physical emotional state?? hope it has helped you. N thanks again