Initially Posted: 10/06/2017 | Last Updated: 10/13/2020
Zinc Supplements and Lozenges Reviewed by

Zinc supplements and lozenges compared in this review


Cold-Eeze - All Natural Cherry Flavor


Bronson Laboratories Zinc Lozenges


Country Life Zinc


Designs for Health Zinc Challenge


Dr. Mercola Zinc Complex


Finest Nutrition [Walgreens] Zinc


Garden of Life Vitamin Code Raw Zinc


GNC Zinc 30 mg


KAL Dinosaurs Zinc Elderberry - Mixed Berries


Natural Factors Zinc Citrate


Nature Made VitaMelts Zinc - Honey Lemon


Nature's Bounty Zinc


Nature's Plus Source of Life Animal Parade® Kid Zinc - Natural Tangerine Flavor


Nature's Way Zinc Lozenges Echinacea & Vitamin C - Wild Berry Flavored


NOW Zinc 50 mg


Pure Encapsulations Zinc 15


Rexall [Dollar General] Zinc


Shaklee Zinc Complex


Solgar Zinc Picolinate 22mg


Swanson Zinc (Gluconate)


Up & Up [Target] Zinc Cold Remedy


Vitacost Zinc 50 mg


Zand Lemon Zinc Herbalozenge, 5mg Zinc per lozenge herbal supplement


Zicam Cold Remedy Ultra Crystals - Berry Lemonade Flavor

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  • What is it? Zinc is an essential mineral, one of the few nutrients for which a mild deficiency is not uncommon. (see What It Is). Zinc is naturally found in meats and other foods (see Getting Zinc -- From Food)
  • What does it do? Zinc supplements (typically taken in pill form) can reverse or prevent zinc deficiency (which can otherwise impair the immune system, cause diarrhea, reduce taste, etc.) and help slow advanced macular degeneration of the retina. Zinc is also taken as a lozenge (or other orally dissolving formulation) to act locally on the throat to reduce the duration of a cold. (See What It Does).
  • How much to take, and which form? The daily requirement for zinc ranges from 3 mg for children to 14 mg for lactating women (see Dosage). No form is particularly better absorbed than another and zinc gluconate is typically the least expensive. To reduce the duration of a cold, take a lozenge (or other orally dissolving formulation providing 9 to 23 mg of zinc as either zinc gluconate or zince acetate) every 2 to 3 hours during the day, allowing it to fully dissolve in the mouth: Limit treatment to a week because chronic intake of too much zinc (see upper intake levels) can reduce copper absorption, leading to copper deficiency that can impair the immune system.
  • Best zinc? Among supplements that passed testing, we identified our Top Pick for Pills, Top Pick for Lozenges, and Top Pick for Other Orally Dissolving Formulations. We found that you can pay as little as 1 cent or more than $1 to get an equivalent dose of high quality zinc — there is no need to overspend.
  • Cautions: As noted above, don't take too much zinc and don't take with fiber, which inhibits absorption of zinc. Be aware of drug interactions with zinc, particularly for certain antibiotics. (See Concerns and Cautions).
In this comprehensive review of zinc supplements and zinc lozenges, you'll get test results and quality ratings for 24 zinc products (including 8 that passed our voluntary Quality Certification Program). You'll learn:
  • Which zinc supplements passed testing, which failed, and which were selected as CL's Top Picks for providing the right ingredients and the best value   
  • Which zinc lozenges provide a dosage known to work -- and which do not
  • What zinc can and cannot do for your health  
  • If certain forms of zinc, like zinc gluconate, zinc acetate, and zinc citrate are better absorbed than others  
  • The zinc dosage to treat conditions including colds, macular degeneration, and zinc deficiency 
  • What the "zinc challenge" is and whether or not it is a reliable method for determining zinc deficiency or adequacy
  • The potential side-effects of zinc and other concerns with zinc, including drug interactions 

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