Washington: Here is another way to cure common cold easily, as according to a study, taking zinc acetate tablets may increase the rate of recovery by three folds.
The study recommends not more than 100 mg of elemental zinc per day.
The findings indicated that on the fifth day, 70 percent of the zinc lozenge patients had recovered compared with 27 percent of the placebo patients.
While some zinc lozenges have an unpleasant taste, the zinc acetate lozenges used in these three randomised trials did not suffer from such a problem.
Lead study author Dr. Harri Hemila from the University of Helsinki in Finland suggested that the optimal formulation of zinc lozenges and the best frequency of their administration should be further investigated. He also instructs common cold patients to test individually whether zinc lozenges are helpful for them.
Even though there is strong evidence that properly formulated zinc acetate lozenges can increase the rate of recovery from the common cold by 3 fold, many zinc lozenges on the market appear to have either too low doses of zinc or they contain substances that bind zinc ions, such as citric acid.
Therefore, the findings of this meta-analysis should not be directly extrapolated to the wide variety of zinc lozenges on the current market.
The team gave the dose of zinc in the three studies was between 80 to 92 mg/day.
Therefore, it seems highly unlikely that 80-92 mg/day of zinc for one to two weeks, starting very soon after the onset of the first cold symptoms, might lead to long-term adverse effects.
None of the three analysed zinc lozenge studies observed serious adverse effects of zinc.
However, in certain other controlled studies, unrelated to the common cold, zinc has been administered in doses of 100 to 150 mg/day to patients for months with few adverse effects.