Zinc is trace mineral that is used by the body to perform several functions. There are many dietary forms of zinc, and zinc picolinate is one of them. It is also a primary component in the body’s metabolism. Zinc serves as a substrate in many biochemical processes within the body, and a lack of zinc in your diet can result in the derangement of these functions.
Picolinic acid occurs naturally in our body and acts as a chelator. This is the most efficient chelator for metals such as chromium, zinc, manganese, copper, iron, and likely to molybdenum as well. Picolinic acid is made from tryptophan, an amino acid. Picolinic acid is made in the liver, and then brought to the pancreas, and during digestion, it is part of the secretions mixed with the ingested food to facilitate the absorption of the minerals mentioned.
When zinc is chelated with picolinic amino acids, we form zinc picolinate.
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Absorption of Zinc Picolinate
The absorption of zinc in the body is a complex process that involves passing through the intestinal membranes, the blood stream, and individual cells. Zinc picolinate is the well-absorbed form of zinc in the body.  This is in comparison to zinc citrate and zinc gluconate, both of which are known to be useful and chelated forms of zinc. The three were tested against one another for human consumption and zinc absorption was improved when complexed with picolinic acid.
What are the Functions of Zinc in the Body?
Zinc is used by the body to perform many biochemical processes.  Zinc is used by the body to perform various enzymatic functions, particularly catalytic in nature. It’s also found to have functions within the immune system, protein synthesis, wound healing, DNA synthesis, and cell division.
During pregnancy, childhood, and adolescence, zinc has been found to support normal growth and development. It has also been found to enable proper operation of the sense of taste and smell.
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Benefits of Zinc Picolinate
- Functions as a General Immune Booster
- Increases the Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor
- Improves Learning and Memory
- Treat the Common Cold
- Aids in Wound Healing
- Reduces Depression
- Helps Control Acne
- Treats Exposure to Lead
- Provides the Zinc Requirement
- Reduces Risk of Prostate Cancer
- Helps Prevent and Treat Liver Disease and Cirrhosis
- Decrease Risk of Age Related Chronic Disease
- Helps Prevent AMD(Age related macular degeneration)
- Improve Fertility in Males
- Shorten Course of Diarrhea
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Zinc Picolinate Functions as a General Immune Booster
Zinc picolinate serves as an immune booster by replenishing molecules that can fight illness, such as tumor necrosis factor alpha or TNF-a.  This is possibly done by zinc by influencing the levels of leptin (a key player in the regulation of energy requirements, appetite, and metabolism) within the body’s circulation, which in turn increases the production of TNF-a.
Zinc is recognized to play a central role in the human immune system. Those who are lacking in the appropriate levels of zinc in the body are found to fall prey to various disease-causing pathogens. Zinc mediates the functions of multiple points within the immune system, such as the lymphocytes and macrophages, by its countless roles in cellular activities such as DNA replication, RNA transcription, and cell activation. 
Zinc Picolinate Increases the Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) Levels in the Body
Studies show that zinc picolinate can increase the levels of BDNF in the body.  Supplementing with zinc improved the mood of subjects in the study. BDNF levels have also been linked to good brain development leading to better memory and learning.
Zinc Picolinate Improves Learning and Memory
According to a study done by the University of Toronto that was published in the journal Neuron, zinc may have a crucial role in the manner at which neurons interact and communicate with one another. This implicates the way at which memories are formed, and the process at which we learn. 
Zinc Picolinate Used to Treat the Common Cold
Lozenges with zinc can shorten the duration of common colds by as much as 40 percent according to one study published in The Open Respiratory Medicine Journal in 2011. The conclusion is that the benefit of shortening the course of common colds can be seen in high doses of zinc. 
Another study, published in The Cochrane Review of Systematic Reviews, zinc, taken either in the form of syrup or lozenge, shows benefit in decreasing the length of time that the common cold persists, and its severity in healthy people, provided that the zinc is taken within 24 hours of the onset of the symptoms. 
Zinc Picolinate Aids in Wound Healing
Maintaining skin integrity and structure is aided by zinc. It was observed that those who suffer from deranged zinc metabolism or those with low serum zinc levels for whatever reason would often experience chronic wounds and skin ulcers. Many medications for diaper rash and other skin irritations list zinc as a primary component or as an additive.
One study has shown that zinc can enhance re-epithelialization, decrease inflammation, and reduce bacterial growth, which can promote the healing of leg ulcers. The topical wound application of medication with zinc can correct the deficit of zinc within the affected area, and can also produce pharmacologic effects. 
Zinc Picolinate Used to Reduce Depression
The presence of zinc picolinate lessens the symptoms of depression through the interaction of BDNF with serotonin in certain regions of the body.  In a study previously mentioned, depressive symptoms in overweight or obese subjects were reduced, resulting in overall mood improvement.
In the use of the antidepressant drugs SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors), supplementation with zinc has shown better results in improving major depressive disorders compared to treatment with SSRIs given with placebo. 
Zinc Picolinate Helps Control Acne
Zinc is considered to act directly on the redness and swelling caused by acne by acting on the microbial inflammatory equilibrium. When used in combination with an antibiotic, zinc can facilitate the absorption of the antibiotic. 
Zinc Picolinate Treats Exposure to Lead
In experimental lead toxicity, zinc and thiamine, alone or in combination, have been found to be effective in reducing lead accumulation in the blood, liver, and kidney. 
Provides the Zinc Requirement Especially for Pregnant Women
Zinc supplementation is recommended for growth and development during pregnancy, childhood, and adolescence. During pregnancy, there is a physiologic decline in zinc levels, thus pregnant women are prescribed supplementation to prevent any complications brought about by the decreased zinc levels within the body. This is also to provide support to the growth of the child.
Reduces the Risk of Developing advanced Prostate Cancer
A study has proposed that long-term intake of supplemental zinc may reduce the risk of developing clinically relevant advanced disease.  They have found no evidence of supplemental zinc being able to reduce the risk of prostate cancer, but it does reduce the risk of developing regionally invasive or metastatic prostate cancer.
Evidence that supports that zinc plays an integral role in keeping the prostate in a healthy state has been increasing. Zinc also appears to help prevent the growth of prostate tumors. Zinc creates an environment that appears to be toxic to cancer cells within the prostate, thus preventing the development of malignancy.
The risk of developing advanced prostate cancer showed more than a 60% reduction when there is an intake of more than 15 mg of zinc. Higher intake of zinc in the diet is also linked to a reduced risk of dying from prostate cancer and increased protection among those who have localized prostate tumors.  
Zinc Picolinate Helps Prevent and Treat Liver Disease and Cirrhosis
Zinc levels decline in humans with the development of liver disease, and studies have shown that supplementation can reverse the clinical signs of zinc deficiency. Supplementation with zinc may also improve liver function in certain diseased states.
Decrease Risk of Age Related Chronic Diseases with Zinc Picolinate
Inflammatory diseases may be avoided by improving zinc intake. A study done at Oregon State University has found that risk of inflammatory diseases may be reduced by increasing zinc intake with diet and supplementation. For decades, we have known that zinc has a substantial role keeping the immune system functioning optimally, and that deficiency of this essential element can lead to increased inflammation in chronic diseases and may lead to new inflammatory processes. 
Zinc Picolinate Helps Prevent Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)
In a study published in the Archives of Ophthalmology, zinc prevents degradation of the retina by preventing cellular damage. This suspends the progression of age-related macular degeneration or AMD, a condition that leads to vision loss. 
Zinc Shown to Improve Fertility in Males
Low sperm quality has been linked with low levels of zinc within the body. One study in the Netherlands was able to determine that those who have had zinc sulfate and folic acid supplementation have increased sperm count in study subjects. Another study has come to the conclusion that low zinc intake may lead to low quality of sperm and then male infertility.
Zinc can also increase testosterone levels. A study which involved elite wrestlers who took zinc supplements for four weeks with their regular diet, were found to have significantly higher levels of total and free testosterone after rest and exhausting exercise, compared to before supplementation took place. The results suggest that the supplementation of zinc may have prevented the inhibition of testosterone concentrations.
Among regular people, the same benefits can be gained from increased zinc intake and supplementation. In a study among men aged 20 to 80 years, those who have restricted zinc intake showed a significant decline in testosterone concentration, while those who took zinc supplements (marginally zinc-deficient elderly men) had an increase in testosterone, which has led to the conclusion that zinc has an important role in affecting testosterone levels among average men. 
Due to zinc’s capacity to affect testosterone levels, its role in sexual health and libido has also been looked into. When increasing testosterone levels, it, in turn, increases sexual health and sex drive. Zinc may correct erectile dysfunction that is secondary to low testosterone.
In patients with kidney disease, wherein sexual dysfunction occurs, it has been reported that the use of zinc supplements would increase testosterone levels and improve the potency and frequency of sexual intercourse. 
Shorten the Course of Infectious Diarrhea with Zinc Picolinate
Zinc supplementation among patients with infectious diarrhea has been found to lead to faster recovery time from the disease. Aside from shortening the course of the disease, zinc supplementation has been found to reduce the severity of the condition as well.
A study in PLoS Medicine looked into the nationwide public health campaign that aimed to increase the use of zinc for childhood diarrhea and was able to confirm that a 10-day course of zinc tablets was effective at dealing with diarrhea and that this supplement may help prevent the recurrence of the disease. 
Stacking with Zinc Picolinate
The human body has no specialized storage system, as such, a daily intake is recommended, to replenish the body’s requirements. Zinc may be combined with iron when addressing hematologic conditions. It can also be combined with vitamin C or any multivitamin for that matter. Most of the time, zinc is a component of any multivitamin formulation found in the market. Momental Mend stacks zinc picolinate with anxiolytics; phenibut, valerian root, neurogenesis and neuroprotectants; like huperzine a, pyridoxine(vitamin b6) a tryptophan precursor in 5-htp, and melatonin and serotonin elevator in mg glycinate.
Stacking should be done in an effort to increase the potency of zinc or that which enhances its desired effects. The combined material may be that which compliments the functions of zinc, or that of which may produce a synergistic effect, that increases the activity that zinc has, or vice versa or preferably both.
Professional Recommendation for Zinc Picolinate
How is Zinc Picolinate Prepared and Taken (Proper Dosage)
Recommendation of the amount of supplementary zinc intake is provided in the Dietary Reference Intake (DRIs) from the Food and Nutrition Board at the Institute of Medicine. Recommended Daily Allowances (RDA), and Adequate Intake (AI) levels are indicated here. Recommended Daily Allowances are based on scientific research evidence, whereas, Adequate Intake levels are established by authorities when there is not enough evidence to come up with an RDA. 
For Infants (AI)
0 to 6 months: 2 milligrams per day (mg/day)
7 to 12 months: 3 milligrams per day (mg/day)
For Children (RDA)7 to 12 months: 3 milligrams per day (mg/day)
1 to 3 years: 3 milligrams per day (mg/day)
4 to 8 years: 5 milligrams per day (mg/day)
9 to 13 years: 8 milligrams per day (mg/day)
For Adolescents and Adults (RDA)Males, age 14 and over: 11 milligrams per day (mg/day)
Females, age 14 to 18: 9 milligrams per day (mg/day)
Females, age 19 and over: 8 milligrams per day (mg/day)
Pregnant females, age 19 and over: 11 milligrams per day (mg/day)
Lactating females, age 19 and over: 12 milligrams per day (mg/day)
Red meat and poultry provide the majority of zinc in an average American diet. Zinc may also be obtained from beans, nuts, whole grains, and dairy products.
Zinc Picolinate Side Effects
Oral forms of zinc are possibly safe; however, this might block the absorption of copper. This may result in the development of anemia.
Taking high amounts of zinc is likely unsafe. High dosages that go well beyond the recommended allowances may cause the following adverse effects:- Fever
- Decreased white blood cells
- Vomiting / Feeling like throwing up
- Abdominal or stomach pains
Care should be taken when taking excess zinc, as this may result in the suppression of the absorption of copper, which also plays vital roles within the body.
Increased levels of zinc have also been suspected to lead to the development of kidney stones. Additional research is being done on this front.
Zinc Deficiency and Precautions
Zinc deficiency is normally due to insufficient dietary intake. In some cases, it may also be due to malabsorption and chronic illnesses. Some of the signs and symptoms of zinc deficiency include:- Loss of appetite
- Slow wound healing
- Skin conditions
- Abnormal taste and smell
- Hair loss
- Difficult or prolonged birth in pregnant women
How and Where to Buy Zinc Picolinate
Zinc picolinate is available at local grocery and health food stores. It may not be a common form of zinc in the market, but it is known to be the most bioavailable and helpful due to its nootropic effects and immune boosting properties in the body. Reliable online vendors are also offering zinc picolinate produced by trustworthy manufacturers. If you are unable to buy your zinc supplements from local suppliers or the local market or pharmacy, you may turn to online stores. Momental sources it’s zinc picolinate from US suppliers and manufacturers for quality and efficacy.
Summary (The Highlights of Zinc Picolinate)
- Zinc picolinate is an essential mineral needed for good health. An adequate amount of zinc should be consumed from a balanced diet and/or supplementation in order to take advantage of the health benefits that zinc has to offer.
- Zinc is a substrate in many biochemical processes within the body which results in many benefits that include the following: immune booster, improves brain functions – including memory and learning, improving the course of the common cold, improve wound healing, improves mood and combats depression, aid in the control of acne, help in the management of lead toxicity, arrest the development of prostate tumors, prevent liver diseases and cirrhosis, prevent the development of age related chronic diseases, improve male sexual functions, and improve patient outcomes who presented with diarrhea.
- Zinc may be bought from any pharmacy or local market. It may also be obtained from reliable online vendors.