Zinc Interactions with Medications

Zinc Interactions with Medications

Did you know? Zinc supplements can inactivate certain antibiotics if taken at the same time!

Many people take zinc to strengthen their immune system when they are sick, but if they are also on antibiotics or antivirals, the zinc could render these medications inactive, making them useless.

Zinc, and other cations, such as calcium, iron, magnesium, and aluminium, have a positive charge on them when they dissolve in stomach fluid. This positive charge is attracted to other molecules that have a negative charge (such as antibiotics), which then cause them to act like 2 magnets colliding together in the stomach fluid. When this happens, both the zinc and the antibiotic molecules become inactive.

The most noticeable antibiotics affected are tetracycline and quinolone antibiotics. However, the potential for drug interactions between medicines and OTC products are endless.

There is emerging evidence of interactions between OTC products and cephalexin, doxycycline, and antivirals. For this reason, it is best to take minerals at least 2 hours before or 4 to 6 hours after any sort of medication.