Zinc – the male mineral.

Have you ever tried supplementing with zinc? If you haven’t, you might be missing out. My first encounter with zinc was through ZMA that is used as a supplement to get better sleep. I did feel some kind of change/improvement and think I slept a little better. But I have always had quite big issues, actually falling in sleep because my mind keeps wandering, and there I did not notice big improvements by supplementing with ZMA. I have later found some better ways to deal with that, but I will cover that in a later post.

Then recently I stumpled upon some positive reviews about zinc on its own. Theory says, that even a slight deficiency of this vital mineral should be able to cause the following:

  • Lower sex drive
  • Limit muscle gain
  • Cause fat gain
  • Hurt energy levels

These are absolutely not effects you want to deal with as a man in general, and even less so, if you train hard to keep yourself in shape and be the best you. When looking at what theory says about effects of zinc, you should really be on the edge of your seat:

  • Raises testosterone levels
  • Improves insulin sensitivity
  • Anti-estrogen
  • Improves immune system
  • Improves sex drive

In theory everything works in practice, but in practice this is seldom the case. I will however, now give you my personal experiences with this mineral. After a bit of research, reading different people’s advice etc. i found that the recommended dosis would be around 50-100mg a day. I started low to see if I had any sideeffects, and then gradually build my way up to the 80-100mg mark where I have been for the past month or so. I have read people going as high as 250mg a day, but I would not recommend that.

Zinc should be relatively safe as supplement, but in my research I found that too large quantities, can actually weaken your immune system and large quatities over a prolonged period is under suspicion for contributing in the development of cancer.

In the far less serious side-effects, some people have reported slight headaches or nausea when taking Zinc on empty stomach. Therefore start low and see how you react. It is also recommended to take Zinc together with copper as these minerals counter-act each other. Some supplements of zinc therefore contain copper to avoid this. But as most people in western civilization should be copper-rich in the first place, given our diets, the problem should not be as profound.

Before you start, you should be aware that you may not even be deficient in the first place. There are some tests you can buy and try to see if you are, or you can of course just start and see if you get any of the benefits – if not, then you are propably already where you need to be zinc-wise.

From my experience you start feeling the effects rather quickly. I felt more energized already the day after starting. Getting out of bed seemed easier, I finally felt closer to fully rested in the morning. This has been an issue for quite some time, and are absolutely not any better this time of year, when the days get shorter and shorter, where I live. My energy levels during the day were remarkably higher already from day 1, sex drive did sure as hell increase and I just felt – better. Did I notice any gains in muscle mass – nahh not really, but I have been training for 13-14 years, have worked a lot on my diet, so any changes from here come at a very slow pace. 

Are you having trouble with not really feeling fully rested, even after 8 hours of sleep, lacking energy during the day and maybe not even feeling horny and full of motivation to chase girls – then you maybe you are zinc deficient. I would highly recommend trying, if you are deficient, the upsides are absolutely awesome.

 

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