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Zinc - Driving me crazy!

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 12:34 pm
by sammick
Well my son is hugely deficient in Zinc. Last lab work showed RBC Zinc was at 26. He should be somewhere between 138/245. Our DAN has never seen someone this low. However, every time I try supplementing ANY zinc, he gets super hyper. I bought a month ago LiquiZinc by Brainchild and the same thing with even 1/4 of a tsp. Both our DAN and our G.I. doc are puzzled by this, they never had a child who would get hyper on Zinc. :? Our GI doctor is going to talk to his team about this and see what we can do. We met with our DAN last night and he suggested we supplement L-Theanine and 5-HTP to try to help calm him while taking the zinc. This is on top of his Metadate CD. Has anyone else ever had trouble with Zinc????? I know he needs it sooooo bad. Any suggestions would be wonderful! Thank you.

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 12:45 pm
by FuzzyOne
this is what i found in the book "autism: effective biomedical treatments":

"It's hard to come up with a physiological reason for intolerance to zinc at low doses or dietary levels, or to levels that are just 2x or 3x the DRI. One reason would be severe copper deficiency, which is uncommon in the general population and rare in autism. Usually, a worsening in behavior following zinc supplement is due to the substance that the zinc is combined with. Trying a different form (such as switching from picolinate to gluconate or citrate) could solve the problem. Adverse reactions to large doses of zinc can occur, but such doses are well beyond what we have tabulated above."

so, maybe checking for copper deficiency and exploring the different forms of zinc (not necessarily just different brands) may give you your answer.

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 12:53 pm
by TamiW
Great info Fuzzy One. ***Edited to add: Just to back up what you just found:
Takes 60-90 days to correct copper/zinc balance in AD/HD and this may be longer or more involved in autism. Can get bad reaction in the beginning because the copper is released too fast. Zinc citrate is great. Bioavailable forms – zinc picolinate is good for bad guts, or zinc sulfate. Zinc acetate is good.

If this is the case, you might give the zinc and then dose some activated charcoal about 45 minutes later.

I wanted to ask when you are dosing his zinc. Is it in the morning or in the evening?

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 1:12 pm
by sammick
Thank you FuzzyOne, great info to look into.


I have tried all different times of the day, without food and with food. Even with his supplements and then just alone -- and these are all ideas I have found on here about when to give it -- it just doesn't seem to matter. He used to get the Kirkman Zinc capsules, now I trying LiquiZinc.

Just got a phone call from his school and he is really active today (not why they called). I haven't even got to the zinc part. I gave him 1/2 dose of 5-htp last night and 1/2 the dose of the L-theaning this morning. (He used to take L-Theanine and didn't have a problem with it, or I thought he didn't :? ).

Just looked at a different lab results we had done and it says Relative need for copper is 0 (meaning no need for additional copper out of a scale to 10)

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 1:27 pm
by FuzzyOne
have you done 5htp before? it makes my son totally nuts - like he is on drugs, having hallucinations, nuts. it's a bad deal for him, although i know it typically calms most kids. just something to think about.

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 1:32 pm
by sammick
No this is our first time trying 5-HTP. I gave him 1/2 dose last night before bed and he fell asleep like normal. But I will definitely watch for it - Mick reacts to EVERYTHING!!!!

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 1:35 pm
by TamiW
Mick reacts to EVERYTHING!!!!

Is he on Liver Life?

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 1:37 pm
by sammick
He used to be for over a year, then we started all over from the beginning with our new DAN - he hasn't mentioned it yet.

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 1:41 pm
by TamiW
Did he do well on it or no? Is he more reactive now, less or the same to introducing new supps? Liver Life helps with opening up the detox pathways and if the metals are mobilized (like copper) but unable to filter out, this increases aggravations. So if this is what's going on with him, LL may help. Thinking about it, you also might try a super low dose of zinc and then increase it each week. So maybe try a drop or two. Then next week try 2-3 drops, then the week after try 4-5 and see if the gradual increase is better tolerated.

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 2:15 pm
by sammick
Thanks Tami, the drops are a great idea!! I will try it that way (but first have to see if he will be okay with the 5-htp and L-Theanine -- always something!!! I just don't want these two to confuse me with what Zinc is doing. If it is not one thing it is another......... :(

He did pretty well with the Liver Life - he was up to 20 something drops in the am and the same in the pm. Maybe something to look at again - thanks!!!!!!!!

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 3:31 pm
by dabaxter
Carnosine with Zinc will help get this up.

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 4:26 pm
by renae26
Just a thought, but have you tried supplementing with Magnesium at a different time of day, i.e., away from the zinc?

Magnesium and zinc compete for absorption, so supplementing zinc may be depleting his magnesium. Magnesium is a calming mineral, so less magnesium means more hyperactivity (at least for my son).

I've noticed the reverse with my son--whenever I give too much magnesium (for constipation), my son starts licking his hands and pressing his forehead into me. This stops as soon as I give him zinc.

ETA: my son also went bonkers on the 5-HTP within minutes of dosing him. His pupils became very dilated, he started breathing really fast, and was super hyper.

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:28 pm
by Dani
5-HTP made my child very hyper too. She was wild, weepy and so unlike herself.

Sometimes high doses of zinc can make kids really hyper during the period of adjustment. You're going from a very low state of zinc to a higher one and our kids bodies need time to get used to the new increased levels. Maybe you could dose the zinc at a lower dosage for one thing. You could also spread the low doses througout the day (I don't know if spreading it is feasible if he goes to school). Our DAN says to give zinc apart from enzymes and calcium.

Have you tried a zinc cream? I don't know how much of it is absorbed though and it sounds like your son needs quite a bit of zinc.

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2009 6:44 pm
by williams_dad
Have you had testing for heavy metals ?
a quick look at the periodic table will show
that mercury and cadmium are directly below zinc and most likely the culprits for blocking it.

I would up Selenium
but I would also try to assist the digestion of Zinc by using digestive enzymes - Betaine HCl would be your best bet there.


Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2009 1:03 pm
by sammick
Thanks everyone for all the support and suggestions. I was sooooo overwhelmed yesterday trying to figure out what to do. All the suggestions made me take a step back and figure things out.

So this is what I decided to do. I am not going to put in the L-Theanine and 5-HTP yet (I did for 1 day and I think he was reacting to that). Because how will I know if he needs them unless I try the zinc first. I think starting with a single drop is a perfect idea. (Thanks Tami). So tonight I will start with 1 single drop. If he does well with that I will increase 1 drop. I will probably eventually space out the single drops when I get there and increase from there. Going to take it nice and slow and hopefully his body will react to it better this way.

What about also adding in Magna/Zinc cream by Our Kids? Would this be something that could help him. Prob. best to just do at night so he wouldn't be hyper during the day????

debaxter, I am really interested in the Carnosine. I have asked my old DAN dr., new DAN and GI Dr. and they all didn't have anything positive to say about it. I have kept this on MY list though b/c I have read so much about it helping with speech. I know it has mixed reviews, but it is definitely worth a try. I looked it up on and I saw two brands there (L-Carnosine), but neither of them have Zinc. Is the one you are talking about have Zinc in it? What brand is it and where did you order it from. I know I will probably have to start out really low, but at this point it is worth a try.

williams_dad, thanks for the great info. We had chelated for four months before we started HBOT. Our new DAN wants us to start again. We saw a lot of positives with chelation. However, I feel I need to get his zinc improved before starting. Can you tell me a little more about Betaine HCI. I am not familiar with this one. We are only on Carb digest b/c when Mick had his colonoscopy and endoscopy it was found that he can digest protein (so we stopped EnZym-Complete/DPP-IV™), but was found not to digest carbs well.

Thanks for all the feedback from everyone!!! :D I will keep you up to date with how it goes. He will be retested again in two months. I know it probably won't be where it should be at that time, but hopefully a little better than where we are now.

Posted: Sat Mar 28, 2009 8:56 am
by sammick
just bumping this up as I had a few questions above - thanks.

debaxter, is it carnaware the one you are speaking about with Zinc.

Posted: Sat Mar 28, 2009 11:13 am
by Tracey
Have you ever tried chelate-mate by New Beginnings? It's been a godsent for us. It's a clear water-like liquid that contains zinc and some other minerals. I think it's easier to digest than other forms of zinc. My son used to be up all night when we gave him zinc. It got so bad that we actually stopped giving him zinc at all. When I told our DAN she suggested the chelate-mate. Now he usually sleeps through the night as long as we give it to him befor 5:00pm. It might be worth a try.


Posted: Tue Mar 31, 2009 6:08 am
by sammick
Thanks Tracey. Our DAN wants us to start chelation again, so I think the Chelate-Mate would be perfect. Anyone else have experience with this :?:

We are up to a single drop of LiquiZinc three times a day and so far no problem. Going to continue to keep it slow...... :)

Anyone else have experience with Carnaware?


Posted: Tue Mar 31, 2009 12:44 pm
by FuzzyOne
we've tried CarnAware and it's really expensive and i didn't see that it was any better than just using carnosine and zinc and vitamin E as separate supplements. that's just been our personal experience - i wish i had not wasted the money on CarnAware the first time around. it's also just 200 mg. capsules, so you have to use several to get to the average dosage.

Re: Zinc - Driving me crazy!

Posted: Sun Dec 04, 2016 10:51 pm
by Aloe
I have autism. I took zinc the last few days and it seems to be what's randomly made me crazy the last couple days. I was laughing and crying at the same time and essentially hyperventilating. When this was happening I couldn't think, I could only give into the laughing, crying and hyperventilating.