Zinc for eczema
Zinc is an essential trace element that’s important to the functioning of your immune system and metabolism, among other things. Some research has shown that zinc could be helpful in treating the symptoms of eczema.
What is Zinc?
Zinc is a mineral. It is called an “essential trace element” because very small amounts of zinc are necessary for human health. Zinc is a nutrient that plays many vital roles in your body. Because your body doesn’t naturally produce zinc, you must obtain it through food or supplements. Zinc is naturally found in a wide variety of both plant and animal foods. Foods that don’t naturally contain this mineral, such as snack bars and baking flour, are often fortified with zinc.
Benefits of zinc
The major functions of zinc are burn and wound healing, carbohydrate digestion, metabolism, prostate gland function and reproductive organ growth and development.
What does the research say about zinc and eczema?Eczemas comprise a diverse group of dermatoses with variable etiology and clinical manifestations and constitute significant proportion of all dermatological diseases with an estimated prevalence of 18 cases per 1000 US population. Zinc supplementation appears to be beneficial in treating eczema, given that any patients with eczema are low in zinc and zinc is important to proper essential fatty acid metabolism – delta-6-desaturase. The anti-inflammatory properties of zinc have been the reasons for its use in many common inflammatory dermatoses like acne, rosacea, eczemas, and ulcers and wounds of varied etiology. When zinc sulfate was added to clobetasol cream, it showed a statistically significant improvement over the cream without zinc sulfate for people with chronic hand eczema. The researchers also indicated that with its strong antibacterial and antioxidant action, topical zinc oxide has also been used in treating atopic dermatitis. – Reference The skin is the external barrier of the human body. It is the most versatile human organ, plays a key role in protecting the body against environmental influences, and participates in the regulation of homeostasis and metabolic processes as well as immunological reactions. One study showed that using zinc oxide impregnated textiles demonstrated that people with atopic dermatitis who used the textiles showed significant improvement in the disease severity, itchiness, and subjective sleep than those not using the textiles. – Reference Another study however concluded that zinc deficiency and atopic dermatitis share many features but concluded that more studies are needed to determine a possible cause-and-effect relationship. – Reference
Dosage of zinc
Please consult with your health care professional before starting any new supplementation or for treating eczema.
Zinc gluconate 20-30mg daily may be prescribed if you are low in zinc. Zinc gluconate as it is the easiest to absorb and digest
Infants and children: Zinc is LIKELY SAFE when taken by mouth appropriately in the recommended amounts. Zinc is POSSIBLY UNSAFE when used in high doses.
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Zinc is LIKELY SAFE for most pregnant and breast-feeding women when used in the recommended daily amounts (RDA). However, zinc is POSSIBLY UNSAFE when used in high doses by breast-feeding women and LIKELY UNSAFE when used in high doses by pregnant women. Pregnant women over 18 should not take more than 40 mg of zinc per day; pregnant women age 14 to 18 should not take more than 34 mg per day. Breast-feeding women over 18 should not take more than 40 mg of zinc per day; breast-feeding women age 14 to 18 should not take more than 34 mg per day.
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