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Liposomal Zinc: What Is It and What Are Its Benefits?

Many of you have probably heard of zinc, which is a nutrient found within your body. It’s essential to both your physical and mental health. Zinc is a vital part of ensuring that your immune system and metabolism function properly, and the nutrient also plays a role in wound healing, taste, and smell—and it may be able to improve certain mental health conditions as well. 

Traditional zinc supplements have a lot to offer in regard to health benefits; however, taking oral supplements means you’re going to sacrifice some of the potency. We’ll get into that later, but first, let’s talk about zinc and what it is. 

So, what is zinc? What can it do for you? How should you take it? 

Table of Contents:

1. What Is Zinc?
2. What Does Zinc Do? What Zinc Deficiency Looks Like
    2.1 Loss of Appetite
    2.2 Weakened Immune System
    2.3 Weight Loss
    2.4 Diarrhea
    2.5 Wound Healing
    2.6 Lack of Taste and Smell
    2.7 Hair Loss
3. What Can Liposomal Zinc Do for Your Health?
    3.1 Supports Immune Function
    3.2 It’s an Essential Antioxidant
    3.3 Promotes Normal Glucose Metabolism
    3.4 Skin Health Benefits and Healing
4. When Should You Take Liposomal Zinc Supplements?
    4.1 What Time of Day Should You Take Liposomal Zinc?
5. Zinc as a Preventative Measure Against COVID
6. Final Thoughts on Liposomal Zinc Benefits

1. What Is Zinc?

As we mentioned earlier, zinc is a nutrient that is necessary for helping your body perform many of its functions. However, your body does not produce zinc naturally. 

Your body does not produce zinc naturally. You have to get enough of it through foods or supplementation.

This means it’s necessary for us to either obtain enough of the nutrient through the fruits, meats, vegetables, and other foods, or we have to do so by supplementation. It is considered an “essential nutrient,” which means your body is unable to produce or store it. 

This makes it even more important that we consume lots of foods rich in zinc regularly, or if that’s too much to worry about, simply add a zinc supplement to your daily routine. 

If you’re concerned about how taking a zinc supplement might affect you or if it may interact with any of the current medications you’re taking, you can always speak to your doctor and get their opinion.

Speak to your doctor about how taking a zinc supplement might affect you.

If you’re already taking a zinc supplement or eating plenty of foods containing zinc, you probably won’t need to add more to your diet. However, some people may be lacking zinc in their diet and not know it, or it may yield confusing side effects that can be mistaken for other problems. 

2. What Does Zinc Do? What Zinc Deficiency Looks Like

Without zinc, your health will typically make it clear in some way that you are lacking something. But since we’re not all doctors, sometimes it can be difficult to translate certain symptoms or connect them to having a zinc deficiency. 

Take a look at the following symptoms. If you notice that you’ve been experiencing one or more of these symptoms, there is a possibility that you may need more zinc in your diet. 

2.1 Loss of Appetite

One of the first and most noticeable symptoms would be a decrease in appetite. Some studies have noted that individuals with a zinc deficiency exhibited poor appetite. Other studies indicated that zinc supplements could boost caloric intake among patients dealing with anorexia. [1][2]

Lack of appetite is one of the most common signs of zinc deficiency.

Of course, more studies will be required to understand the true connection between zinc and our appetites. However, it’s believed that zinc may influence our appetites through means of affecting ghrelin, which is a hormone found within the body. 

This hormone is commonly referred to as the “hunger hormone,” stimulating appetite, increasing food and caloric intake, and promoting fat storage. 

2.2 Weakened Immune System

A body lacking in zinc has a difficult time overcoming and recovering from illnesses and colds. Even zinc levels that have dropped only slightly can impact your immune function. Researchers have unveiled that taking zinc before you get sick will help strengthen and prepare your immune system, reducing the length of time that you are sick. [3]

If you get sick often and stay sick for longer than normal, you may have a zinc deficiency.

Zinc has actually been introduced to the medical world already. You’ll be able to take your pick from zinc lozenges, zinc throat sprays, zinc nasal sprays, zinc suckers, and much more. Keep in mind that there have been some complaints of zinc nasal sprays causing a decreased sense of smell. 

However, one study revealed that colds were 33% shorter for those using zinc. So it may be worth a temporary loss of smell to shorten the duration of a cold. [4]

2.3 Weight Loss

Zinc deficiencies have been known to cause weight loss. This goes hand in hand not only with the lack of appetite, but also with the manipulation of ghrelin and leptin levels, both of which are connected to satiety. 

Unexplained weight loss is yet another symptom of zinc deficiency.

As we mentioned earlier, low zinc levels may cause a lack of appetite since it affects the ghrelin levels within our bodies. It may also impact our ability to taste, making it even more unappealing to eat anything. 

Low leptin or the absence of leptin will fool the body into thinking it doesn’t have any fat, which results in uncontrolled and impulsive eating. It has also been known to delay puberty and negatively impact the immune system. 

This brings us back once again to zinc, which may be able to help stimulate leptin production, preventing it from falling too low. This will ultimately help you avoid overeating, obesity, diabetes, and many of the other issues that come with a zinc deficiency.

To clarify, leptin decreases your appetite while ghrelin increases appetite, both of which have a role in body weight. Zinc can affect both of these levels within the body.

Too little zinc, and you may experience unexplained weight loss; proper zinc levels, and you’ll likely have a normal appetite—which will, in turn, help you avoid obesity and other issues linked to being overweight. 

Zinc supplementation may help you avoid overeating, obesity, diabetes, and many of the other issues that come with a zinc deficiency.

2.4 Diarrhea

Unfortunately, zinc deficiency isn’t the only reason you’d find yourself battling a bout of diarrhea. You’ll also want to be careful when taking traditional zinc supplements since they’ve also been linked to diarrhea and upset stomach. 

If you are worried that taking zinc may cause you stomach distress, be sure you always follow dosage recommendations. Taking too much zinc could result in diarrhea, which may make your zinc deficiency even worse since diarrhea is the enemy of proper absorption. 

If you want to avoid the GI upset altogether, you’ll want to skip the traditional zinc supplement and go straight for the liposomal zinc. Taking oral supplements, such as capsules, can cause frequent gastrointestinal upset. 

As with many other traditional oral vitamins and supplements, taking them on an empty stomach can create other unwanted issues as well, such as nausea and vomiting. 

Frequent diarrhea may be an indicator that you have less-than-desirable zinc levels.

2.5 Wound Healing

If you have a zinc deficiency, you may find your wounds taking longer to heal than normal. 

Zinc is a key player in regulating and maintaining each stage of the wound healing process. This process includes several steps, such as membrane repair, coagulation, inflammation, immune defense, oxidative stress, angiogenesis, and scar formation. [5]

This is just another reason to regulate your zinc levels, and liposomal zinc supplements can improve them quickly. 

Low zinc levels may result in wounds that don’t heal easily.

2.6 Lack of Taste and Smell

It’s said that elderly individuals will usually experience a decrease in smell and taste if they aren’t getting an adequate amount of zinc in their diets. Around 1.1 billion people are zinc deficient globally, and that’s primarily due to their diet being inadequate. 

Vitamin and nutrient deficiencies in the United States are not as common as they are in other countries; however, it is still possible. It’s said that around 20–25% of individuals 60 years of age or older probably aren’t getting enough zinc. [6]

Sometimes lack of smell or taste can be an indicator that you need to start a zinc supplement.

2.7 Hair Loss

Alopecia, or hair loss, is another incredibly common symptom of a zinc deficiency. Not everyone who has low zinc levels will develop alopecia, but it is common. Fortunately, it can be reversed or managed by keeping zinc levels optimal. A small study revealed that hair loss was slowed down or stopped due to zinc supplementation

3. What Can Liposomal Zinc Do for Your Health?

Zinc is essential to your general health and well-being. Without zinc, many of our body’s functions would be compromised. This makes us feel unwell and unwraps a large variety of different health issues. 

Making sure that you have all of the essential vitamins and nutrients in your system will also serve you when you do end up falling ill, whether it be the common cold or COVID-19. 

Zinc is essential to your general health and well-being.

Taking liposomal zinc may be able to help strengthen and boost your immune system to the point where you’ll notice that you are sick for shorter periods of time. You’ll also find your symptoms are not as severe as they would be if you weren’t supplementing. 

Now:

The main benefit of using liposomal zinc over traditional capsules would be the way it works. Liposomal zinc is protected by tiny fat particles or bubbles. This is not only easier for the body to absorb, but it also allows for more of the nutrient to reach your bloodstream since it is encapsulated in liposomes.

Liposomal zinc is encapsulated and protected by a layer of fat particles called liposomes.

Traditional zinc capsules have to be digested first before reaching the bloodstream, and since these capsules offer no extra layer of protection for the zinc, some of that zinc will be destroyed in your stomach acid. This leaves you with a smaller zinc supplement dosage in the end. 

GI upset is also very common with traditional supplements, which are typically harder on your stomach compared to liposomal supplements. Zinc can also be found in topical form and can be used to target specific areas. 

Let’s look at some of the other benefits of using liposomal zinc

Benefits of Using Liposomal Zinc

3.1 Supports Immune Function

One of the most valuable benefits of liposomal zinc would be its ability to strengthen and boost the immune system. Our lives truly depend on our immune system functioning properly; immunity is crucial. A strong immune system is necessary in order for you to live your life to the fullest. Being sick all the time is probably not on your agenda, and we don’t blame you. 

Since zinc plays such a central role in your immune health, it’s common to see deficient individuals struggling with illnesses often. This nutrient is critical for the normal development and function of cells that mediate nonspecific immunity. [7]

Zinc influences multiple factors of the immune system rather than directly affecting it. This happens through means of hematopoiesis, innate immunity, adaptive immunity, and other processes that are involved in immune regulation. [8]

If you’re tired of being sick constantly, try adding a liposomal zinc supplement to your daily routine.

3.2 It’s an Essential Antioxidant

Zinc also acts as an antioxidant. This nutrient is capable of activating antioxidant proteins, molecules, and enzymes. The nutrient has been known to decrease the frequency of infections, decrease oxidative stress, and decrease the generation of inflammatory cytokines. [9] [10]

3.3 Promotes Normal Glucose Metabolism

Zinc has also been suggested to promote proper functioning of glucose and lipid metabolism, which regulates and forms the expression of insulin. Some studies have indicated that zinc supplementation may help improve blood pressure, glucose levels, and LDL cholesterol levels. [11]

3.4 Skin Health Benefits and Healing

Let’s be honest: we all want our skin to look decent. What measures can you take to make sure your skin looks flawless all year round? 

If you want your skin to be healthy, happy, and clear, try liposomal zinc and see how it works for you.

Well, zinc sulfate has been known to improve acne drastically, and it also works in conjunction with other vitamins and minerals to help treat wounds or lesions on the skin. Zinc is required to maintain cell walls, keeping them stable for cells to divide and specialize as they grow and heal. 

This is a major benefit of zinc, as the skin is our largest organ, and it needs some TLC every now and then. If you want your skin to be healthy, happy, and clear, try liposomal zinc and see how it works for you. 

The skin benefits don’t just stop there, either; zinc also protects your skin from the negative effects of UV exposure, like discoloration, texture issues, and hyperpigmentation. 

You can also use liposomal zinc in combination with other beneficial products for your skin, maximizing your results and making your skin look better than it ever has before.

Liposomal zinc may be able to help control acne and other skin issues.

4. When Should You Take Liposomal Zinc Supplements?

First of all, if you’ve noticed any of the symptoms we’ve discussed earlier, you may want to give your doctor a call and set up a blood test to check your zinc levels and let them know you are concerned that you may be deficient. This is especially true if you are 60 years of age or older.

Once you’ve determined that it’s safe for you to begin zinc supplementation, your doctor can help you determine your dosage and you can decide what time of day is best for you to take it. 

4.1 What Time of Day Should You Take Liposomal Zinc?

Interestingly, zinc may help improve your quality of sleep and decrease the frequency of wake-ups throughout the night. 

Liposomal zinc may help improve your quality of sleep.

Orally administered zinc has been shown to increase both the amount and the quality of sleep in rodent models and humans. [12]

That being said, taking your liposomal zinc before bed may be ideal. It’s also suggested that you take your liposomal zinc an hour or two after you’ve eaten a meal. A fun fact about the nutrient is that it has also been linked to more vivid, realistic dreams. 

So while you may be taking your other supplements and vitamins first thing in the morning, you’ll want to train yourself to start a new routine before bed where you take your liposomal zinc. If it’s too hard to remember, set an alarm on your phone as a reminder. Or you can always leave a sticky note on your nightstand reminding you to take your zinc. 

Set a reminder on your phone or leave a sticky note on your nightstand reminding you to take your liposomal zinc.

This is where things get more interesting.

5. Zinc As a Preventative Measure Against COVID

Since COVID-19 hit back in late 2019/early 2020, researchers have been scrambling to find new measures to manage the side effects. Fortunately, scientists have conducted studies surrounding zinc and its potential for controlling COVID symptoms. 

Zinc supplementation is one method that may actually help, especially in elderly patients or other high-risk groups. There is lots of evidence found in literature that strongly supports the idea of zinc supplementation preventing and improving the symptoms of COVID. 

Zinc can improve mucociliary clearance in the respiratory system, strengthen the epithelium, decrease viral replication, preserve and maintain antiviral immunity, reduce the risk of hyper-inflammation, and support antioxidative effects. This, in turn, reduces lung damage and minimizes secondary infections. All of this points toward zinc being used as a preventative measure against the virus. [13]

The bottom line is that you can’t go wrong by improving your general health with something like a liposomal zinc supplement, as it will only work in your favor in the long run.

You can’t go wrong by improving your general health with something like a liposomal zinc supplement.

6. Final Thoughts on Liposomal Zinc Benefits

Liposomal zinc is ideal for anyone who has a compromised immune system, including those who are older. Zinc deficiencies can usually be identified by certain side effects, such as appetite loss, a weak immune system, unexplained weight loss, diarrhea, a change in your ability to smell or taste, and alopecia or hair loss. 

Choosing liposomal zinc over traditional zinc supplements will help you get the most out of your purchase because liposomal zinc is encapsulated and protected by a layer of fat particles called liposomes. This means more zinc makes it into your system, while traditional capsules tend to be destroyed in your stomach. Liposomal zinc also cuts down on the GI upset many individuals experience after taking traditional supplements. 

Liposomal zinc has a lot to offer: sleep support, immune support, antioxidant benefits, managing glucose levels, improving the appearance of the skin, potentially helping with wound healing, and more. If you lack zinc in your diet, now is the time to introduce it.

Sources:

  1. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtemb.2014.09.002 
  2. https://doi.org/10.2174/2212798411103030226 
  3. https://doi.org/10.2119/2008-00033 
  4. https://doi.org/10.1177/2054270417694291 
  5. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10010016 
  6. https://doi.org/10.4140/TCP.n.2016.267 
  7. https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/68.2.447S 
  8. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10787-017-0309-4 
  9. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtemb.2014.07.019
  10. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtemb.2014.07.019 
  11. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12576-017-0571-7 
  12. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms18112334 
  13. https://doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2020.01712