When applied to skin or taken orally in amounts of 40 mg or less per day, zinc is typically safe for majority of adults. Regular supplementation of zinc isn’t recommended without consulting with your doctor. Some people who take zinc may experience stomach as well as kidney damage, metallic taste, diarrhea, vomiting, nausea as well as other side effects. When zinc is applied on broken skin, an individual may experience tingling, itching, stinging as well as burning sensation.

Zinc in high amounts is typically unsafe. Individuals who take amounts which are higher than the recommended dosage may experience fatigue, stomach pain, coughing, fever as well as numerous other problems.

Taking over 100 milligrams of zinc each day or having supplemental zinc for at least 10 years gives an individual twice the tendency of having prostate cancer. Moreover, there is a higher chance of mortality from prostate cancer when high amounts of multivitamins are taken with a separate supplement of zinc.

Blood iron problems can result from taking a minimum of 450 milligrams of zinc per day. A single zinc dose of 10 to 30 grams can result in death.

Zinc nose sprays such as Cold-Eeze and Zicam maybe unsafe. These may lead to decreased or total loss of sense of smell. The US FDA or Food and Drug Administration advised consumers in June 2009 to avoid use of Zicam or nose sprays that contain zinc after they received more than a 100 reports of loss of sense of smell. There are also reports received by the sprays’ makers about hundreds of people who used the product and lost their sense of smell. It is thus recommended not to use these nose sprays.

Precautions and Warnings

Pregnancy as well as breastfeeding; Zinc is typically safe for majority of pregnant as well as breast-feeding moms provided the daily amounts stated in the RDA are followed. Pregnant women who are over 18 shouldn’t have over 40 milligrams of zinc a day; those who are ages 14 to 18 shouldn’t have over 34 mg per day. Breast-feeding moms who are over 18 shouldn’t have over 40 milligrams of zinc a day; breast-feeding moms ages 14 to 18 shouldn’t have over 34 milligrams a day.

Those who have HIV (human immunodeficiency virus or AIDS should not take zinc. Zinc can shorten the life of people living with HIV or AIDS.