Zinc test - "Zinc-Tally"

Test fluid consisting of a 0.1 % solution of zinc sulphate in distilled water. Can detect zinc deficiency in the body and may be used as a zinc supplement. It is used as a treatment for anorexia.

Zinc deficiency is difficult to detect in a laboratory since most of the body's zinc is found in the cells. Instead one can use a simple taste test with a zinc solution.

Gustin is a zinc dependent polypeptide, which is required for normal development of taste buds. Zinc Tally is one in several zinc solutions designed for testing zinc deficiency in the body. The product was accepted in the British 1988 Pharmacopoeia as a good way of testing one's zinc status.

The test fluid is made by titrating the right concentration. Make sure that the bottles are thoroughly disinfected - use an autoclave - since growth of bacteria will change the flavour.

The content is a 0.1% solution of zinc sulphate heptahydrate (ZnSo4 7 H20) in distilled water. This fluid has a zinc content of 15 mg. pr. 120 ml. - only this concentration is effective.

Tests on rats have shown that it heals wounds in a few hours, whereas weaker or stronger solutions were ineffective.

The Zink test
You must not eat, drink, or smoke less than one hour before the test. Then take the equivalent of a liqueur glass of the fluid and rinse your mouth with the fluid for 5-10 seconds, after which you can either swallow or spit it out. Four different flavours now appear:
  1. No flavour or "like water" = typical zinc deficiency
  2. No flavour to begin with, but later a reaction occurs described as either "dry", "fluffy","mineral", "like baking powder" or "sweet" = zinc deficiency
  3. A strong but not necessarily unpleasant flavour is registered immediately and builds up little by little = no zinc deficiency.
  4. An unpleasant flavour is registered immediately. The test person makes a wry face and wants to rinse his mouth with water = no zinc deficiency, good zinc status
You can take your zinc supplement in this way. It is also well-suited for anorectics. You should be able to taste the zink after 3 weeks, otherwise you should have your gastric acid concentration examined - it might be too low.

Zinc tablets can also be used as a supplement.

In cases where the test person has amalgam fillings in the mouth disposing a fair amount of mercury, the zinc test may be less precise. The zinc liquid might cause a nasty, metallic taste in the mouth in spite of the zinc deficiency in the body.