The Magic Bullet Supplement for Stomach Issues – Zinc Carnosine

The Magic Bullet Supplement for Stomach Issues - Zinc Carnosine


  • If you have stomach discomfort (ulcers, H. pylori infection, or gastritis and can only afford one supplement, I would recommend zinc carnosine. It is one of the best supplements for stomach issues.
  • Zinc is a trace mineral that can decrease wound healing time, is important for maintaining the integrity of the immune system, and much more.
  • Zinc is used by the body for testosterone production.
  • Carnosine is both an amino acid and antioxidant.
  • Carnosine is believed to protect organs from oxidative stress and advanced glycation end product damage (diabetic neuropathy).
  • Rarely, high doses of zinc carnosine over a long period may cause zinc toxicity and lowered immune system functioning.
  • My top two recommended brands of zinc carnosine are Peptic-Care ZC and Doctor’s Best PepZin GI.

Quite a few people ask me if they could only afford one supplement to help with stomach discomfort (ulcers,1 H. pylori infection,2 or gastritis3) what supplement would I suggest them to use for their troubles? If I had to choose one digestive supplement that could handle those multiple stomach issues and more it would be zinc carnosine. It is one of the best supplements for stomach issues. Zinc carnosine is the chelation of the mineral zinc and the amino acid carnosine.4


Zinc is an important trace mineral that can decrease wound healing time5 and is important for maintaining the integrity of the immune system.6 Zinc is used by the immune system to help develop and maintain function of neutrophils, macrophages, killer cells, and B / T cells.7 Zinc is also a crucial component in the production of the antioxidant enzyme CuZnSOD. 8 Copper and zinc combine with the superoxide dismutase enzyme to produce CuZnSOD. CuZnSOD is a chelated enzyme that has both strong anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory abilities.9 Zinc in studies has also been known to shorten the duration of childhood diarrhea infections. The mechanism of action of shortening diarrhea infections is that the zinc increases immune system functioning and facilitates toxin elimination.10

Finally, zinc is used in the body in the production of testosterone (limits the amount of DHEA in males that becomes estrogen),11 growth hormones, and insulin-like growth factor-1.12 Zinc is very important for males to supplement in their daily lives. If you do not have stomach issues I would recommend taking fifteen mg of Now L-Optizinc daily, to ensure proper testosterone production.

Different Forms of Zinc

Recommended Forms of Zinc

Zinc L-monomethionine

Zinc L-monomethionine is the form of zinc that I recommend the most (yes, even more than zinc glycinate). Zinc L-monomethionine is a highly absorbed form of zinc with multiple benefits. Zinc L-monomethionine is highly absorbed because it is bounded with the l isomer of methionine. Methionine is an essential amino acid, which means your body cannot produce this amino acid, and it must be supplemented through the diet. Methionine has two isomers (an isomer are molecules with the same molecular formula, but different chemical structures) D and L. The D isomer is synthetic and is created during supplement production. The L isomer is natural and is what the body recognizes as methionine. Therefore, the L isomer has a higher absorption. The extra methionine provided by the zinc supplement is used in the body to make cysteine, carnitine, taurine, lecithin, SAM-e, and phosphatidylcholine.

Methionine, when converted into SAM-e eventually degrades into a byproduct known as homocysteine (excess homocysteine has been linked to being a possible factor in developing heart disease). Homocysteine then is immediately inactivated and turned into either the amino acid cysteine or methionine in the body before any damage can be done as long as adequate B12 and glycine are provided. Methionine is beneficial to the body in supplemental form as long as you take a good B vitamin complex or take a supplement that contains the amino acid glycine. I recommend the Optizinc brand of L-methionine supplements.

Zinc Glycinate

Zinc glycinate is a zinc supplement that is chelated with the amino acid glycine. Glycine reduces anxiety in the body and promotes a feeling of well-being. Check your supplement to see if your glycinate chelate in your supplement is made from the TRAACS Albion process of manufacturing chelates (the supplement should have the TRAACS or Albion logo). Choose a glycinate product that uses TRAACS so you can get the best quality glycinate available.

Zinc Monomethionine

Zinc monomethionine is the brother of Zinc L-methionine and also has great absorption. Zinc monomethionine is not absorbed as well in the human body compared to L-methionine because it contains both of the D and L isomers. When using this supplement a B vitamin complex supplement or glycine supplement may be needed as well to help with absorption and monomethionine regulation. I recommend the Optizinc brand of monomethionine supplements.

Zinc Picolinate

Zinc picolinate is a zinc supplement that is chelated with picolinic acid. Picolinic acid is a compound that is an isomer of niacin and is a carbolite of the amino acid tryptophan. Zinc picolinate has superior absorption and picolinate absorption is superior to even gluconate chelates.


A great form of zinc that also includes magnesium chelates from all of the Krebs cycle: citrate, fumarate, malate, succinate, and alpha-keto-glutarate. ZMK is great for athletes and is very good for recovery. A ZMK supplement should be taken before bed.

Zinc Gluconate

A form of zinc that is chelated with gluconic acid which occurs from the natural fermentation of glucose. Zinc gluconate has above average absorption in the body. Zinc gluconate is the type of zinc that is found in products like throat lozenges and nasal spray that are used to shorten the duration of the common cold. The zinc gluconate nasal sprays have been linked to permanent loss of the sense of smell in some people and should be avoided.

Zinc Orotate

Like magnesium orotate, zinc orotate is one of the least known forms of supplemental zinc. The extra orotate will help with muscle regeneration and repair. Women should avoid itt if they are or are trying to become pregnant since it may be mutagenic (only found as a possibility in rats in vivo; and rats are biologically different than humans, therefore it might be safe after all.)

Garbage Forms of Zinc

Zinc Citrate

Zinc citrate is zinc chelated with citric acid. Zinc citrate has an average rate of absorption and can increase stomach acid levels. An animal study showed that the citric acid in the zinc citrate supplement can offset some of the absorption problems if the zinc supplement is taken with a meal high in phytic acid. Citrate may interfere with ceruloplasmin production.

Zinc Oxide

Zinc oxide has a poor absorption rate in the human body. Zinc oxides poor absorption properties is why it is used as a sunscreen and a skin protectant. I only recommend the use of zinc oxide skin care products, but limit the products made with nano zinc oxide which can be absorbed and nano zinc oxide safety has not been fully studied yet.

Zinc Aspartate

The average absorption of zinc aspartate is not worth the extra aspartic acid. Too much aspartic acid may be neurotoxic. This recommendation includes ZMA supplements.

Zinc Pyrithione

Zinc pyrithione is mainly used in anti-dandruff shampoos. Its mechanism of action for eliminating yeast is that it disrupts the yeast’s membrane transport by blocking the proton pump that energizes the transport chain. Zinc pyrithione can cause irritation and allergies, and its use should be limited.


Carnosine is both an amino acid and antioxidant. Most carnosine in the diet comes from the ingestion of red meat. Carnosine is believed to protect the organs from oxidative stress and advanced glycation end products (AGE’s). 13 AGE’s are produced during the break-down of glucose, fructose, and galactose by the body for assimilation. Excess AGE’s that are produced in the body have been linked to a wide range of diseases from diabetes,14 cardiovascular disease,15 to Alzheimer’s disease16 as well. Sadly, the amount of carnosine in most zinc carnosine supplements is tiny and is broken down easily by the enzyme carnosinase, so the effects of the supplemental carnosine would be minimal.17

Zinc Carnosine

Zinc binds quickly to stomach tissue if taken on an empty stomach. If you take a zinc supplement on an empty stomach, it causes severe stomach pain and gastritis. It has been theorized that zinc ions are highly soluble in stomach acid and have corrosive, antimicrobial, and immune-stimulating properties that irritate the stomach tissue because of the direct absorption of the zinc ions. If you chelate zinc with carnosine, the chelation slows down the absorption and elimination of zinc from the stomach. Zinc is then able to repair the stomach and intestinal tissue directly without irritating it. Zinc carnosine may be taken on an empty stomach as needed. Zinc carnosine also protects the stomach lining from opportunistic H. pylori infection, and NSAIDs damage that cause ulcers that come from long-term use of the medication.18

Supplemental Recommendations and Toxicity

High doses of zinc carnosine over a long period can cause zinc toxicity and lowered immune system functioning. Symptoms of zinc toxicity include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, frequent colds, increased cholesterol levels, and chills.19 If I had to take a maximum dose of zinc carnosine I would take no more than 450 mg of zinc carnosine (100 mg of elemental zinc) a day total for two weeks. Most supplement instructions recommend taking zinc carnosine twice a day for a total of 75 mg of zinc carnosine daily (15 mg of elemental zinc.)

If you supplement with any other type of zinc, I would recommend no more than 60 mg of elemental zinc daily. If you supplement with 60 mg of zinc, I would suggest that as long as you did not suffer from adrenal fatigue that you should supplement with two mg of Pure Encapsulations Copper Glycinate daily. Zinc and copper balance one another in the body and a good supplementation ratio is for every 15 mg of zinc, one mg of copper is needed (15:1 ratio).

Excessive copper buildup and toxicity can make adrenal fatigue symptoms worse, so limit copper intake during zinc supplementation until adrenals have healed. Zinc carnosine is one of my top three favorite digestive health supplements; everyone should keep a bottle in their medicine cabinet so they can take it when needed.

Supplement Recommendations

Recommended zinc carnosine supplement (it is also what I take daily):

Other recommendations:

Recommended form of zinc L-methionine:

Recommended form of zinc glycinate:

Other recommendation:

Recommended form of zinc monomethionine:

Other recommendation:

Recommended form of zinc picolinate:

Recommended form of zinc citrate:

Other recommendations:

Recommended form of zinc gluconate:

Recommended form of zinc orotate:

  1. Hello John, is the Swanson brand of Zinc Carnosine good?

    Can I take this with food? what is the best time of day to take it and how long should I take it?

    Also will it reduce my other metal content like copper and iron? thanks in advance.

  2. This is a great article. I started zinc a few days ago. Eidon zinc sulfate which is in a water was the only kind available locally that wasn’t filled with garbage. Rice flour, mag sterate etc. I knew sulfate wasn’t the best but it was the only option without additives. I have a very sensitive system to start with as I have AI and major malnutrition and absorption issues so I try to take sublingual whenever possible. I didn’t even take the full dose which is only 7.5mgs. It felt very acidy and was burning my stomach. By the next morning I began 24 hours of hell. I had one of the worst migraines ever and vomiting and nausea. I did take it with food. I had a fitful night with the burning in my tummy but I was not prepared to be that level of sick. It was truly awful. I’m now scared to take zinc again as I’m confused on what would be good but sensitive enough on my system. I’m not sure if zinc is just something I won’t be able to take as I’ve read it does cause headaches and nausea for some people but I think that’s much higher doses. Any suggestions?

  3. Hello John,

    How long does it generally take for Zinc L-carnosine to cure ulcers? And do you need to continue to take it for ever or stop after you feel better?


  4. Two weeks ago my teenage son began taking chelated zinc 15mg once daily (50% zinc Arginate 50% zinc glycinate plus copper) because he had read it helped acne. Several days later, he developed almost daily stomach pains that vary in severity and time of day. He had just come off of a 3 month course of doxycycline hyclate 200mg right before he began the zine. Any relation to the stomach pain? He says he does not believe it is the zinc because the only day he did not take it, he had the pain. Some days he had no pain, yet still took the zinc. Thank you for any light you can shed on this. His physician placed him on a PPI for gastritis 4 days ago with little improvement.

    • Zinc that is not zinc carnosine can be quite hard on the stomach mucosa. He should make sure that he is always taking it with food. Taking it on an empty stomach can cause stomach pain, gastritis, nausea, and vomitting.

  5. Yes that’s true, I read about that for a very long time but I don’t know if too much of it can also cause side effect or too much sugar in the body

  6. Hi John I’ve been using Dr Best pepzin gi for the past 2 years with a daily dose of 2 tablets and its been quite effective for me. I recently got diagnosed with a tiny non benign tumor in my bladder. Could it be because of the long term use of this product? Also I’ve been a smoker for the past 22 years. Please advise

  7. how long should i take zinc carosine for gerd.

    • It depends on the individual person. I would ask your healthcare professional but a general rule of thumb is to finish one whole bottle.

  8. Hi, thanks for the great post!

    I’m a vegetarian and I’m looking into taking a zinc supplement, and I figured zinc carnosine would be good because I hear that carnosine supplementation for vegetarians may also be beneficial.

    However, if my goal is to make up for a lack of dietary zinc intake, will zinc carnosine be appropriate? I’m reading that it primarily works in the stomach and isn’t absorbed systematically. Would I be better off with a different zinc supplement?

  9. Hello! I take zinc carnisone by Doctors best for my stomach. But I would also like to take zinc for colds or flu prevention. If I take more zinc other than the zinc carnisone will I be overdosing on zinc? Is the zinc carnisone enough to take if I take it daily? What is the best zinc capsule for colds? thank you!

    • I am also low in zinc due to ulcerative colitis. Will the zinc carnisone raise my levels or do I need more zinc? Thanks in advance!

  10. Hi John, great article.

    I’ve read studies that Zinc intake in the range of 50mg or more per day can decrease SOD activity. Is it possible that Zinc taken at that dose may cause harmful physiological effects?

    Also, I’m curious how you established a balance ratio of 15:1 for zinc and copper? Most other sources suggest ~7.5:1.


    • I have seen a few rat studies that were not really conclusive, any human studies?, I used to be Ron Swanson on the forums, haha.

      • The study I was referring to had women take 50mg of zinc along with 3mg of copper – it found both minerals were in a positive balance but that SOD activity had decreased. They were unable to determine the cause or if this was a negative physiological reaction (search for “Changes in dietary zinc and copper…” by Milne DB).

        I have found no studies that show the optimal intake ratio, just that specialists like Paul Jaminet and Paul Eck, recommend a ~7:1 as that’s what’s found in tissues and in food sources like eggs, which makes sense.

        I have tried 7.5:1, but feel better taking 50mg zinc with 3mg copper, just want to make sure I’m not causing any harm. I’ve had problems with zinc/copper imbalances my entire life – a seesaw of deficiency in both. Was wondering how you landed on the 15:1 ratio.

  11. Dear Mr. Brisson, there seems to be a wide range of zinc carnosine amounts described in this blog. The label on my Doctors Best bottle says take no more than 2 doses (or 75 mg of the supplement [total] per day; these caps are 37.5 mg each). I have also seen in this blog that you said up to 450 mg per day for 2 weeks may be acceptable. Since this is my first attempt at using this to address chronic gastritis, I started week 1 with 3-4 doses per day depending on how my stomach felt (ie, 75 mg per dose after each meal and/or an hour before bed). I also now supplement with DGL. So under what circumstances would you recommend 450 mg per day? And, is 150 mg per day (as I have started) likely to be detrimental over the long term (ie, until the gastritis settles down-assuming a few months to a year)?

    • Dear Theresa,

      The amount of elemental zinc in each capsule is 8 mg and the amount of the amino acid L-carnosine is 28 mg. The 75 mg for two capsules is the combination of zinc and L-carnosine, two capsules have 16 mg of elemental zinc. Therefore, eight capsules daily would be 8 X 8 = 64 mg of elemental zinc. Most of the zinc binds to the upper gut tissue and even less is absorbed into the bloodstream. You are far from zinc toxicity.


  12. Will it work even if you are on PPI

  13. I’m not able to tolerate zinc carnosine, could I heal my stomach by eating foods high in zinc?


    • It would not work the same way. The zinc you ingest in your food, very small amounts would be bio-available for your stomach tissue during digestion. Zinc carnosine is digested slow so that it directly binds with the stomach tissue and is more bio available initially then what is in food.

  14. Hi John

    I have been on Zinlori 75 Metagenics for years due to an ulcer caused by too much aspirin and continued with it because of h Pylori. Recently I ran out and used another brand Dr’s Best because I couldn’t get the metagenics zinlori75 into France. It took 3 days but I actually reacted to Dr’s Best brabd. My reaction was expressed as gut damage (excess white/fresh mucous) and consequent breathing problems – my guess is Histamine as a result of mast cell activation and increased heart rate due to allergic response. NOw I have managed to get my hands on Metagenics again but I am now reacting to it as well…not as severely but still reacting in ghastritis symptoms as well.

    Have you heard of this before? Almost like an immune system response or neurological response? Love ot hear any thoughts.

  15. Hi I found out I am low in zinc. So I started taking Zinc Carnisone. Is this all I need to get my zinc levels up and also do I need to take a copper supplement along with it? Can I take one zine carnisone daily by doctors best. Or stop it every now and then?

  16. please help, i am using Drs Best zinc carnosine for Gastritis , it really helps but its disturbing my sleep, i just take one in morning , even that makes me hyper or sleepless in night… any advice for me ? Thanks, NZ

  17. Hi John,
    Great website — I have learned a tremendous amount from reading it.

    In spite of doing my due diligence in researching zinc carnosine’s safety / side effects, getting my functional medicine primary care practitioner’s OK to try it, AND starting with a small dose of 1/2 capsule, I am one of the few people who is apparently sensitive to it. I take a lot of other high quality supplements without any problems, but after taking 1/2 – 1 capsule per day of Doctor’s Best Pepzin GI on and off for several days, always with food, I find it does NOT agree with my GI tract at all.

    I noticed it caused gas almost immediately, then queasiness, and the last dose caused stomach pain and unpleasant esophageal pressure and burping that burns slightly (GERD?), all of which I hope will subside and not cause permanent problems. I have LPR (LERD) and in addition to the above symptoms, that last 1/2 capsule reactivated some of those symptoms, noticeably globus, hoarseness, post-nasal drip.

    I took the 1/2 capsule very late in the afternoon, so by the time the symptoms really kicked in, it was too late in the day to eat anything else to try to settle my stomach. So here I am 6 hours later, still experiencing discomfort.

    I am probably atypical compared to most of your readers because I have 2 congenital benign esophageal strictures as well as Esosinophilic Esophagitis (I developed various food allergies in my 40s).

    I also have lower GI issues with post-infectious IBS-C / SIBO-C, for which I once tried Atrantil. Big mistake! 1/2 capsule, taken with food, caused an immediate and quite unpleasant allergic-type reaction: swelling of the throat, increased heart rate & considerable anxiety! Company refunded my purchase without question.

    As you can appreciate, I have a very sensitive body. I describe my experience to show that even a supplement with a great safety track record for the majority of people can still cause a problem for someone who is very sensitive.

    • Who knew that such a safe supplement could cause me such problems? Here it is 5 am, almost 12 hours after ingesting 1/2 capsule of ZC. Still have extremely uncomfortable heartburn which is gradually increasing, difficulty burping, throatburn, throat clearing, intermittent perceived breathlessness, mild gas.

      I had been slightly increasing consumption of coconut water (sometime with added aloe), perhaps not a good idea? I also drink rice milk, which hadn’t seemed to bother me UNTIL I used it to take the fateful 1/2 capsule of ZC.

    • Yes, Barbara, not every supplement works for everyone and I appreciate your post. In addition people with histamine intolerance issues may react negatively to the carnosine component in zinc carnosine being L-histidine.

  18. John, I have been using Gastralieve for my dog..30 mg zinc caroline and 10IU vitamin E and it has worked wonders for her digestion. Now, they claim that it is not being produced. could you suggest a zinc caroline tablet that I could break up and put just 30mg in her food?

  19. Hi John! I know this post is from awhile back but I figured I’d try anyway! First off, I LOVE what zinc does for my stomach issues. It’s a cure in every way for each one of my stomach ailments (so many!) and I too would recommend this to everyone and anyone as far as using it to fix your gut! However, zinc does not mesh well with my mind. After a year and a half of supplementing 40+ mg a day (my doctor told me it was safe!), and everyday of that year being in an absolute mental hell of borderline psychosis, I finally figured out what was causing it (and after two late night trips to the ER for heart racing up to 180!). I have been off zinc for a few months and my mind is settling more each day, thankfully! My question is, can you help a girl out with another supplement suggestion that is similar in miraculous results? At this point I have chosen the healing of my mind over my stomach so now I’m back to square one. I am so sensitive to zinc right now (and any foods containing zinc) that even something like eating handfuls of cashews sends me overboard, I realized! Any suggestions would be very appreciated!

  20. I have recently turned to researching supplements to deal with my severe silent reflux, after being on PPIs for the past 8 years. I just had an endoscopy and also learned I have a hiatal hernia. In your opinion will Zinc Carnosine benefit me and/or help my symptoms in any way? I just bought a bottle. Also, and I apologize if you have already addressed this, but how long is it recommended/safe to take the supplement?

    • Yes, it may help reduce inflammation and possible overgrowth in the stomach. It depends on the person, but for most zinc carnosine is well tolerated for long term. Just monitor zinc and copper.

  21. Hi. I have post cholestecomy bile salt diahhrea. I’ve been taking Questran (successfully) for this
    condition. Questran binds bile and can also absorb other meds/ so I take all other meds away from
    it. I also have gastritis (endoscopy results not my op dinner …. I take all other meds either 1 hour before
    or 4 hours after these two meals / or at lunch – SO I have been taking zinc L carnosine and don’t know when
    to take it. I can take it with lunch, but that’s only once a day. Should I also be taking it at bedtime or 1 hour before
    the questran? I don’t see how it would help if I took it with my breakfast or dinner / because the questran
    might interfere with it… right? Please also send answer to my email. Thanks.
    Thanks. Nancy

    • Questran inhibits cholesterol so over time you have to be careful taking it because it can cause hypothyroidism and possible hormone disruption. It also reduces vitamin D metabolism and zinc absorption. The good news is zinc carnosine is not systemically absorbed so it might be ok to take it at the same time. If not it is fine to take it before or after meals.

      • If zinc carnosine is not systemically absorbed, does that mean that no zinc goes to any other part of the body? If so, how can you then get a zinc overload? Also, based on that assertion I would imagine that zinc carnosine could not be used as a daily zinc supplement to supply zinc to the body, as would any other zinc supplement. I would really like to trade in my current zinc pills for zinc carnosine, but I won’t if you are saying that it will not provide zinc to any other part of my body than my stomach.

  22. My 18 year-old son has just started taking the zinc carnosine for heartburn recommended by his doctor. He is taking two per day most days, sometimes only one, PepzinGI 75 mg. Do you think he can safely take this dosage for many years without toxicity? I don’t think you consider this to be high dosage. Do you recommend checking copper levels at some point or is that only with other zinc supplementation? Would one zinc gluconate 30 mg. during cold and flu season still not be considered high dosage along with the zinc carnosine? Thank you.

    • I believe that he could I have for years. Zinc carnosine should work directly on the stomach tissue and little should be absorbed systemically. Yes, every three to six months he should have serum zinc, copper and ceurloplasmin. Zinc gluconate would be fine when he gets sick or if his zinc serum is low.

      • Thank you. Also, depending on which brand of zinc carnosine, the directions can be either take “between meals” or “during or after meals.” I wonder which way is better or makes no difference.

        • It is best to take it on an empty stomach to reduce overgrowth, but if it irritates the stomach it needs to be taken with food.

  23. I was reading this and I noticed Im having a problem when ever I take zinc even as small as 10 mg I feel fine that day . But the next day I feel so tired and almost dizzy/fatigued. Why does this happen? Any info or help would be greatly appreciated. Years ago I could take a 50 mg zinc tablet and be fine. I’m only 25 years old

  24. Useful information. Lucky me I found your site accidentally,
    and I am stunned why this twist of fate did not took place
    earlier! I bookmarked it.

  25. What do you think of Zinc Sulfate?

  26. Hi, my 8 year old son has unfortunately started showing symptoms of H Pylorii for the past couple of months- gerd, burning stomach when empty, abdominal pain, bloating and gas. I too have H Pylorii. Could I give him Zinc Carnosine? I was thinking so far of mastic gum, cranberry and cabbage/broccoli juice for all the family. Artemisinin for me also. Should I consider anything else? I don’t want to go down the antibiotic route unless all else fails. It’s so upsetting to see him suffer. Thanks

  27. Hi John,

    I have relatively high levels of homocysteine – 11.5. Can I still take Zinc L-monomethionine?. Some extra methionine sounds good to me as a result of methylation issues. Thanks!

  28. Is it normal for Solaray optiZinc to burn the stomach? But no problem with Swanson ultra zinc carnosine. Taking zinc carnosine for gastritis and optiZinc for anxiety and panic attacks. You wrote “Zinc may irritate the stomach lining if it is not chelated with carnosine.” Should I try taking zinc carnosine and optiZinc together?


    • Very common. Zinc binds quickly to stomach tissue if taken on an empty stomach. If you take a zinc supplement on an empty stomach, it causes severe stomach pain and gastritis. It has been theorized that zinc ions are highly soluble in stomach acid and have corrosive, antimicrobial, and immune-stimulating properties that irritate the stomach tissue because of the direct absorption of the zinc ions. If you chelate zinc with carnosine, the chelation slows down the absorption and elimination of zinc from the stomach. Zinc is then able to repair the stomach and intestinal tissue directly without irritating it. Zinc carnosine may be taken on an empty stomach as needed. Zinc carnosine also protects the stomach lining from opportunistic H. pylori infection, and NSAIDs damage that cause ulcers that come from long-term use of the medication. 18

  29. Hi John,

    I have been battling chronic gastritis as of late, and I’ve been taking zinc carnosine to heal it up, while following a high ph diet. This routine seems to help with stomach pain quite a bit if I strictly follow the diet and avoid acidic foods.

    I’ve also been supplementing with pico-ionic magnesium which has helped me feel much better after coming off a long course of cipro for bacterial prostatitis. I would now like to add a zinc supplement to further remedy prostate related issues. Since the pico-ionic magnesium liquid has worked so well for me due to it’s enhanced absorption, would ionic zinc be more easily absorbed than pill or capsule versions of zinc? My stomach is very sensitive, and I can’t seem to tolerate any kind of oral medications due to gastritis related issues. Please let me know your thoughts, thanks in advance!

  30. Hi John

    I am taking Z L-monomethionine for the past several days and have developed a craving for red meat. I am a vegetarian for the most part (eat seafood occasionally). So not sure if this is normal or not.

    Any suggestions?

  31. “Zinc L-monomethionine is a highly absorbed form of zinc with multiple benefits.”
    Is there REAL research/study done by reputable institution?

  32. Hi John,
    I am 44 yr male suffering from Candida/Leaky gut. My Magnesium levels are low. Am also Serum Zinc Deficient.Serum Copper is above normal levels. Have been suffering from Menicus tear of both knees. Hscrp is high.Am a vegetarian.
    Does this indicate copper toxicity? I am taking Magtien. Started of with Zinc Acetate which i guess if giving me flatulence. Which Zinc should i try? with copper or without? What other supplements would you recommend.

  33. How do you rate zinc sulphate? It comes in this formula which I am thinking of giving my son?

  34. Hi John,

    You said “Zinc carnosine is one of my top three favorite digestive health supplements”

    What are the other two?

    Great work, by the way.

  35. Is Zinc methionine the same as zinc monomethionine and if not, is it still a good form of zinc?

  36. Hello Mr Brisson
    Thank you for your excellent article
    I have been diagnosed with adrenal insufficiency
    Have had Ulcdrative colitis for many yrs and now I have permanent colostomy
    Recently I had my HTMA and it showed copper toxicity and low on potassium zinc
    I wanted to stet supplement zinc and wanted your input for my situation
    Would zinc picolonate be the good one and how, with at brand, time a day w meals and dose.
    Thank you and looking forward to your reply!

  37. Hi John,

    I have had declining health for the past 3 years.I have been on a long journey trying to find the root of many of my issues. I have PCOS with high testosterone, MTHFR & high homocysteine levels, possible adrenal issues(depressed cortisol in the am, elevated midday and evening and normal at night( 12 hour saliva cortisol test). I have low ferritin (11) and I am very fatigued and unable to sleep at night. My BMI is 18. I have acne and severe hair loss. I have eliminated all gluten and dairy, which has helped some with the severity of the acne and reduced some tummy issues, but not all. I do not know if I should be concerned about copper? What form of zinc would you recommend for pcos? I had an RBC zinc blood test done and it came back at the top of the range level, but I am not sure this is a valid way to measure zinc levels? thank you for your reply in advance!Blessings!

    • RBC zinc test might not be the most accurate because we do not know the turn over rate of your red blood cells.

      Have you had serum copper or ceruloplasmin tested?

      • Hi John,
        thank you for replying. No, I have not had those tested. I am unsure what the second test you mentioned measures?

        Thank you,

        • Ceruloplasmin is a copper transport protein which is used by the body to make sure that copper is used correctly in your body and gets into the cells or is eliminated by the body. It also helps to transport iron.

    • HI John,

      I am very low in zinc! I have been suffering from lyme and major stomach issues for 4 years now. Trying to heal my gut. Came across your web sight and was reading. still conflicted on what zinc to take??
      zinc carnosine or zinc l-monomethionine ??

      • Zinc carnosine would help the stomach, l-monomethione would help with cellular storage and usage. What about using both at half doses?

  38. Hi John,

    Many thanks for this valuable information. I have had issues with gastritis, but I could control it with food and some times with medication and supplements. Now, I have the recommendation to take the Zinc Carnosine 75mg twice per day, but, also I’m taking PhythoMultivitamins from Metagenics.

    Could I take both supplements at the same time, during the meals? Also, do I have to chew the zinc carnosine tablet (even if it doesn’t chewable) or only swallow it? I found a blog where they recommend to chew it… and I’m confused.

    Thank you so much for your answer.

    • Yes, you should be able to take both supplements at the same time. You do not have to chew up the tablet, it does not matter if it mixes with saliva or not like DGL.

      • Hi again John,

        I have had some issues with gastritis, I had a gastroendoscopy last month and results are normal. However, I still had a light pain in the stomach (upper center).

        I was recommended to take zinc carnosine twice per day. However, as I’m a very sensitive person, I started (Zinlori 75) only one per day with food; but after some days I noticed increased pain and spasms in the stomach as well as a strong metal taste … is it normal?

        Many thanks for you help!

        • No, most people do not have these symptoms. My guess is that you are strongly refluxing the zinc giving you the taste. If you can taste the zinc then you are deficient in it. I would discontinue it if it is causing stomach pain though.

          • Thank you so much for your replies, they really help me!

          • Hi John. I am currently obtaining my Master’s in holistic nutrition, and we were taught during a zinc tally test that tasting the zinc actually means you have sufficient zinc levels in your body, whereas tasting nothing (or delayed taste) means you are deficient.
            Here are zinc tally test instructions confirming this:

            Thank you for this informative post. I have been taught quite a bit about the healing effects of zinc carnosine for increased intestinal permeability, but I was unaware that it does not have systemic effects.

  39. Thank you for this post John! Is copper supplementation necessary for zinc absorption? If yes, then what product would you recommend?

    • No, copper would interfere with zinc absorption and vice versa.

    • No, zinc and copper rarely compete with one another for absorption, but it would require high doses for absorption issues to occur. Long term high dose zinc supplementation can interfere in copper bio availability for some people.

  40. Will the zinc carnosine help with GERD? Zinc at 8 mg and L-Carnosine 29.5 mg for 8 weeks?

  41. What a wealth of information! Where did you get your training? I am ordering what your thoughts are on zinc ascorbates and arginate?

    • Zinc ascorbates are fine, but not enough ascorbic acid in it to really make a difference depending on the dosage. Zinc arginate is also fine, but it depends on the amount of arginine one needs and if the supplement can supply enough, arginine and zinc.

  42. Hopefully you will see this Mr Brisson,

    I am going to take your recommendation on the Now L-Optizinc to help optimize my testosterone production. As a weightlifter at the age of 45, I nee all the help I can get! Just a question though, as a weightlifter/bodybuilder I eat a lot of dairy, will this affect absorption?

    Thank you

  43. I am suffering from chronic gastritis, how long can i take drs best zinc carnosine pepcid. I have burning sensation in my stomach, which is relieved to most extent by zinc carnosine. Please suggest as to how long can i take it.

    • Well it depends on a lot of factors like your cellular copper and zinc balance and the amount you are taking daily.

      I have taken it for at least 4 years daily.

  44. Can’t find the L-Methionine anywhere online but there’s plenty of Monomethionine to go around. I also found the TRAACS Albion website but it seems you have to purchase directly from them. If you’re privy to other info on where i can find these two, please let me know.

    kind regards

    • I have not seen it offered by itself most of the time it is in l-optizinc formulations. Just go with what brand of supplement that uses l-optizinc that you like.

    • …& make sure it is L-optizinc
      (there us also the cheaper optizinc, without the L-)

  45. Hey John!
    Thank you so much for the awesome information! My daughter’s doctor told me to put her on zinc picolinate in liquid form. She said that there have been studies that it helps children that are picky eaters to eat better. I’m having a hard time figuring out what is the best zinc picolinate to get in liquid form. I’d love your opinion! Thank you so much for your time!

    • I was unaware that there was one? A did a quick Google search and found nothing I could recommend.

      • Try a compounding chemist (drug store).
        In Sydney, Australia, it is available as Zinc PICOLINATE 10 mg/5ml liquid 500ml for $43.68 from Kingsway Compounding Chemist.

  46. My partner has Stage 4 metastatic melanoma and conventional western medicine has given up all hope for him but I haven’t. I have started him on B17/Laetrile but it highly recommends for it to be taken with zinc as this is used as it’s transport mechanism into the cells. Research on the most bioavailable zinc has me in a bit of a spin so I thought I would ask for your best recommendation (brand/product) in this instance. I look forward to your response. Kind regards

    • You cannot use Optizinc because increased methionione has been linked to cancer. You also have to throw out zinc glycinate because of the same possibility. Zinc citrate is probably your best bet since citrate may have apoptosis effects. Of course run everything by his doctor. Look into ketogenic diets and cancer (determine if the cancer cells use glucose or glutamine first) and Rick Simpson Oil.

  47. Hi there

    Is the celluose in this product sugar based or is it ok to take this if off from a sugar diet?



    • It should be fine in a Candida diet. Cellulose is mostly undigested by the human body and what bacteria do break down of it, is considered fiber not a sugar.

  48. Hi John,

    What is your suggestion about zinc orotate and magnesium supplementation. I take about 1200 mg of mag by-glycinate in the evenings to help with Fluoroquinolone toxicity symptoms. Any ideas?



    • Magnesium helps because it is severely depleted in your mitochondria when you took Cipro, most tendon ruptures occur because of this.

      Work or increasing adrenal output, redox potential, and mitochondrial health.

      Follow Jack Kruse’s basic tenets:

      Ingestion of DHA:
      Limiting Blue Light At Night / Proper Sleep Hygiene:
      Reduction of EMF
      Get more sunlight and increase active vitamin D production:

      Taking ubiquinol with PQQ (Unfair Advantage) may help as well. Vitamin C intake may help with collagen production, more than likely your redox is low and SOD2 was epigenetically changed therefore explains the excess oxidative stress in your body hence tinnitus.

      Follow a good diet like the Perfect Health Diet, avoid low carb, for now, need the carbs for adrenals.

      Look into increasing thyroid function slowly using iodine (detoxadine) and selenium.

  49. I have a question on people with Crohn’s can they take Zinc Carnosine to repair their gut especially when the person is on Remicade infusion? Do you recommend any other alternative solution?

  50. You stated that zinc orotate should be avoided if trying to become pregnant, but what if you already are? My wife is currently pregnant and I’ve had her take Advanced Research Labs zinc orotate during this flu season.

    • The mutagenic studies were only replicated in rats. I would still advice to maybe switch her to other forms of zinc to be 100% safe.

  51. Hi,
    I was wondering if zinc supplements that contain an array of vegetable sources are okay. For example MegaFood Zinc supplements contain broccoli and also the capsule is made up of brown rice and something else. Is that bad? Thank you in advance.
    Here’s the link

  52. First of all, I am sorry for your loss.

    Ran across site by searching the diff types of zinc, which I am now even more confused. I am a mom of an adhd 8 yr son and was looking for a safe zinc supplement for I don’t know, memory, brain, research shows adhders need more. All that I’ve searched never states a zinc type. He now does the calc/mag, Nordic complete fish oil, and vitamins which may have synthetics. Anyone’s input :)??


    • Thank you for your kind words.

      First off because of his age it is hard to recommend zinc, because of the risk of zinc toxicity in children. Granted at his age he could probably tolerate 10 – 15 mg daily, but I still would ask a doctor. Zinc glycinate would be his best bet.

      It would be best for him to get his zinc from grass fed beef.

      • Thanks for your response. I must say, it’s a good feeling to get feedback.
        I do buy grass-fed ground beef and chick. But we don’t eat it everyday. I purchased a multi-v as well as b complex. He loves all veggies! It’s was the zinc part that stumped me. His Dr. Always says he’s fine–he doesn’t need Vit/min testing – happy to do meds.:(

  53. What the best way to take zinc orotate to gain all zinc benefits.

  54. Can some forms of zinc make you tired when others would not? I have tried picolinate and AOR’s brand which is made up of 15 mg zinc
    (citrate, malate, succinate, fumarate) and 2 mg copper (citrate, malate) and both products appeared to make me feel very tired, regardless of when I took them. Is it worth trying some of the other types? What would be a good start?

    (I am looking to correct zinc and copper deficiency as identifed by spectracell lab tests).

    • It is hard to correct a copper deficiency in some people without overloading the adrenal glands. Maybe try to eat beef liver a few times weekly since the copper in it should be ceruloplasmin bound. If zinc by itself is making you tired you have some sort of bacterial or fungal overgrowth.

      • HI Mr Brisson – do you hope you get this message. I am 55 year old female, currently taking 10mg a day of zinc orotate in order to help offset my very high copper – revealed by hair test. I am also suffering from mercury toxicity mainlyas result of tooth amalgam (source of which has now been removed) but still have lots of recirculating mercury in my body and brain and I suspect copper toxicity also (which mercury can cause) the symptoms of both can be very similar so it is tricky. Therefore I am avoiding all sources of metals as much as poss. I have also a bit of an issue with acid when I dont eat correctly and have managed to help this a lot with home brewed Kefir which has really helped bowel function. Im not sure if zinc orotate with meals is the best form for me to take? Zinc carnosine would help my stomach but would it also help bump up my overall zinc levels? Many thanks!

        • Zinc carnosine would slowly bump you your cellular zinc levels, if it all. It would however be better tolerated by your digestive system.

  55. I have been suffering from gastritis on and off for years. I started taking Zinc Carnosine on a empty stomach and it gave me bad stomach pains. Does it still work if you take it with food or a hour after a meal? Thanks!

    • Zinc carnosine is not supposed to cause stomach pain on an empty stomach like other forms of zinc but it is still possible. Take it with food.

  56. Following my previous question ( the one is safe during pregnancy) I forgot to mention, I take Doctor’s best PepzinGI. Many thanks

  57. Hi,

    Great article. Do you think is safe to take Zinc carnosine during pregnancy? It works great for me but I got pregnant and I’m not sure if I should better stop. Many thanks, Bianca

  58. Great information thank you.
    I have suffered from gastritis for nine years been on PPI all that time and still in agony. I have just started the zinc carnosine how long does it take to work. Thanks so much. Lisa

    • It can take a few days but most people find relief using it I did greatly. DGL chewable can help as well. Have you been tested for H. pylori?

  59. Great article. Which forms of zinc are the best for ADHD symptoms? I have had good results with Zinc Gluconate 50mg, specifically noticng increased focus, almost as good as or equal to amphetamines. I’m really interested in taking Zinc Carnosine though as I’ve had chronic gastritis from heavy NSAID use s/p an orthopedic injury. Does the Zinc Carnosine help with focus as well? Thank you!

    • Zinc carnosine generally stays in the stomach and therefore I do not believe if it would have the same effects of systemic circulation.

      • Thank you John. Looks like it should be cycled and not taken for more than two weeks anyway, so I think I’m going to try it for two weeks, take a break, then switch back to Zinc Gluconate.

        Great article. Which forms of zinc are the best for ADHD symptoms? I have had good results with Zinc Gluconate 50mg, specifically noticng increased focus, almost as good as or equal to amphetamines. I’m really interested in taking Zinc Carnosine though as I’ve had chronic gastritis from heavy NSAID use s/p an orthopedic injury. Does the Zinc Carnosine help with focus as well? Thank you!

        • Zinc gluconate is fine, Carnosine may help with your gastritis and if it is caused by overgrowth then, it may help with your brain fog.

  60. Is Zinc Carnosine as good as Zinc Picolinate for opposing a high copper problem? I take Source Naturals Gastric Soothe (just Zinc-Carnosine) and have not had any stomach problems whatsoever, so I like that idea. I also like the good effects of Carnosine, but just want to be sure that they don’t cancel out the effects or the absorption of the Zinc itself. Also, would I be better off taking the Zinc Carnosine without food or with? Which would provide the best absorption?

    • I believe that Zinc Carnosine is not as effective in opposing copper because it is used in the stomach for repair mainly. It is best to be taken with food.

  61. Thanks for the post John,

    you mention “A ZMK supplement should be taken before bed”,
    i would like to know the reason/reasons/benefits for this please


    • The zinc and magnesium in the supplement may help with sleep.

      • thx for the reply John.
        i seem to be the ‘exception to the rule’ when it comes to the various recommended supps before bed. including zinc & magnesium.

        but two new supps have just arrived which i have never used before;
        a krebs Zinc (30mg) & a krebs Magnesium (250mg + 100mg potassium).
        so i will pop one of each before bed & see how i go.

        any suggestion as to timings; ‘mins/hours before bed’…?
        & taken on an empty stomach Or with ‘something’…?

        • I would take them with a little bit of almonds thirty minutes before bed. Zinc may irritate the stomach lining if it is not chelated with carnosine.

  62. Thank you for a very informative article and for the many references and links. Would you say it’s essential to take most forms of zinc with a meal to avoid stomach irritation, nausea etc? I mean apart from the Zinc carnosine.

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