Never Take Vitamin C and Zinc Together, Public Health Expert Explains Why

If you take vitamin C and zinc mineral supplements together, stop this practice! Here is why you should not take them together.

Chanchal Sengar
Reviewed by: Swati BathwalUpdated at: May 06, 2021 15:30 ISTWritten by: Chanchal Sengar
Never Take Vitamin C and Zinc Together, Public Health Expert Explains Why

Vitamin C and zinc are two very important nutrients that one needs to take during this pandemic situation. Doctors recommend that you must consume foods rich in vitamin C and zinc to boost your immune system. If you are unable to get it through your diet, take supplements. But do you know that some supplements shouldn’t be taken together? A lot of you might be taking zinc and vitamin C supplements together but in this article, we will tell you why this is a deadly combination.

Can zinc and vitamin C be taken together?

There are so many people out there who are taking multiple vitamins and minerals together without knowing their pros and cons. They consider supplementation as a task and so, in order to get rid of it, they take everything together. This is not a good thing. Public Health Expert and Dietitian Swati Bathwal explain that the composition and solubility of a nutrient should be taken into consideration when making combinations. Unless a nutrient isn’t optimally absorbed, it won’t provide any benefit to your body. Besides, the time of the day these are taken also affects absorption in some cases.

Can zinc and vitamin C be taken together 

Absorption is the key factor for any supplement. Mixing two supplements may reduce the absorption that only goes waste. In addition to this, such combinations can cause adverse interactions that can harm your health.

Also Read: Zinc Deficiency Can Be Life-Threatening For COVID-19 Patients

Swati Bathwal, Public Health Expert, Dietitian and Diabetes Educator explains, Zinc is supported by virologists especially in prevention of common cold. It is seen that it prevents the onset of common cold.  There is no evidence on its benefits in SARS COV 2 related pneumonia but it has shown benefits in prevention from regular pneumonia. If commenced  in the first 3 days, it helps in reduction from nasal discharge. Upper level for Zinc is 40 mg a day for an adult. About 10-15 mg of elemental when consumed every 3-4 waking 1-3 days of common cold it prevents the cold . When it is bind with binders like citric acid, mannitol, sorbitol, it binds the zinc ions in such a way that it doesn't release zinc ions. So, if you are consuming zinc avoid having citric acid and in your multivitamin check if it has mannitol or nay other binders mentioned above. it gets best absorbed with gluconate and acetate. Excess zinc can lead to bad taste, nausea, abdominal pain, dry mouth and loss of smell if used through nasal drops."


Let us tell you that if you are taking these two vitamins C and Zinc(mineral) separately, never take them at the same time, as explained earlier. However, there are OTC medicines with the composition of ascorbic acid(vitamin C) and zinc. Can you take them? Yes, you can but only in the suggested dosage. This is because these have the clinically-approved compositional difference between the vitamin and mineral. For example, there are chewable vitamin C tablets with a small amount of zinc. Say, 100mg vitamin C or ascorbic acid and 5mg zinc salt. If your doctor has prescribed you these, then only take these in the right dosage.

Side-Effects of Overdosing Supplements

Never overdose on anything be it a nutritional supplement or medicine. There is always a reason why doctors suggest a certain dosage. If you overdose without consulting your doctor, it may cause side-effects and some of them could even be long-lasting. Here are some side-effects of overdosing on vitamin C and zinc:

  • Vomiting
  • Acute abdominal pain
  • Bloody diarrhoea
  • Severe headache
  • Blood in urine
  • Peeling skin
  • Drowsiness
  • Fluctuating heart rate
  • Weak muscles
  • Change in menstrual cycle

Side-Effects of Overdosing Supplements

If you experience any of these after taking multivitamins and minerals, speak to your doctor and explain your condition. They can suggest a solution to reverse the damage.


Both vitamin C and zinc are essential for the body for protection from covid-19 or coronavirus. One must take these either through food or dietary supplements but keep in mind to not take these together(if you are taking separate tablets of vitamin C and zinc). These would hamper the absorption and your body won’t get the benefits it should be getting from them. It is better to consult a doctor beforehand and follow as they say.

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