This question doesn't duplicate the more limited one on Zicam; I ask here about zinc in general.

No: Mayo Clinic (from which I quote below) and WebMD are skeptical.

Since then, research has turned up mixed results about zinc and colds

Possibly yes: See NHS (from which I quote below) and The Telegraph .

For many years, it has been suggested that zinc supplements could relieve the symptoms of the common cold, but there was little clarity until a 2011 evidence review. This recent review suggested a modest reduction in the length of symptoms, although the results were not entirely conclusive. In a bid to help clarify the matter, researchers have conducted another review of evidence on this issue.

closed as unclear what you're asking by Sklivvz Dec 23 '14 at 11:34

Please clarify your specific problem or add additional details to highlight exactly what you need. As it's currently written, it’s hard to tell exactly what you're asking. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • 1
    Why isn't this a duplicate of skeptics.stackexchange.com/questions/243/…? – Oddthinking Dec 23 '14 at 6:42
  • @Oddthinking That question doesn't appear to discuss zinc's effects on illnesses? – Greek - Area 51 Proposal Dec 23 '14 at 9:10
  • 2
    The sources you provide say basically the same thing, there's no controversy and the claim that "zinc may help" is backed by a systematic review with specific caveats. These results are clearly explained e.g. in the NHS article. – Sklivvz Dec 23 '14 at 11:36
  • @EbenezerSklivvze Thanks, but I seek a definitive, unequivocal answer? The model verb 'may' implies doubt or subjectivity? – Greek - Area 51 Proposal Dec 23 '14 at 14:28
  • The site is for challenging notable claims: what notable claim are you challenging? There is no claim that there is a unequivocal answer – Sklivvz Dec 23 '14 at 14:53

Browse other questions tagged .