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Zinc (in Itself) is NOT the Enemy!

One thing I want to make perfectly clear: the element zinc is not the enemy here. It is found naturally in many perfectly safe foods, and is an important nutrient, required for several life processes. When I was young and silly, and prone to doing bizarre things to my body (such as piercings) I learned that zinc aids to body’s healing process. I also learned that it must be taken with a balancing dose of copper in order to ensure that your copper is not depleted by the excess zinc.

Zinc aids in much more than the healing of wounds, however; it is essential to the digestion of protein, cellular growth, and it helps the body regulate its acidity, much like calcium and sodium do. It even has antioxidant properties, but none of this means you should consume it in large doses (kind of makes you wonder about other, more highly touted antioxidants, and whether or not folks are overdosing on those, doesn’t it?).

Another important point of differentiation, when it comes to both zinc and other nutrients such as sodium, potassium and calcium, is a concept called bioavailability. Bioavailability merely means that the form of zinc is an organic form, able to be absorbed by the body, and used by it for all of these important functions. It is important to note that not all zinc is bioavailable; i.e., it is inorganic. It is this inorganic form which is used in denture adhesives. As such, it has a very low level of bioavailability, and thus tends to accumulate in the human body, rather than being utilized for the constructive and healing benefits which organic zinc can provide.

Good dietary sources of zinc include oysters, nuts and seeds, peanuts, soybeans and other legumes. If you eat meat, almost every meat product also contains zinc. Fortunately, these organic sources are also rich in copper, which helps prevent the sort of copper depletion which occurs with inorganic zinc found in denture adhesives.

The bottom line is this: get your zinc from organic sources, and NOT your denture adhesive! Please patronize products like Sea Bond, Effergrip, Secure by DenTek and Cushion Grip, as they are responsible companies that already produce zinc-free denture adhesives.

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2 comments to Zinc (in Itself) is NOT the Enemy!

  • Betty Davidson

    Cushion Grip denture adhesive was recalled around 2000-2002. Was this done because the product contained zinc?
    I have motor and sensory neuropathy now and I am not a diabetic. I used Cushion Grip adhesive for at least 15 yrs.
    Please reply asap.


  • Michelle (Zinc Free Admin)

    Hi Betty,

    I am sorry to hear about your condition. As far as I know, Cushion Grip has never contained zinc, as it is a very different formulation from the standard denture “cream.” However, I was unaware of prior recalls of Cushion Grip until you mentioned this, so I started looking into it. Thus far, I have found only one mention of Cushion Grip being recalled, which was a voluntary recall back in the 1990s. This was (surprise, surprise) during a wider scare about benzene (aka rocket fuel) being found in several denture adhesives. I’ll dig a little deeper and see if I can find anything in the early 2000s, but if you remember where you read or learned about this, knowing your source might help me dig a little faster.

    That said, you might want to look at two other possibilities:
    1. Have your zinc levels tested, to see if zinc is a possible culprit for your neuropathy. If they are high, I would advise looking for other possible sources of zinc, since we know that Cushion Grip does not contain it. For example, many folks supplement zinc either during colds, or all through cold season, in the belief that it will help bolster their immune system. While this may be true if you are low on zinc to begin with, if you already have sufficient zinc on board, it will simply serve to throw you out of balance, and possibly poison you.
    2. If your zinc levels turn out to be in the normal range, consider switching to a different denture adhesive for a while. While I seriously doubt that it is Cushion Grip which has caused your neuropathy, the fact of the matter is we are each sensitive to different things and in different ways. If I could, I would ensure that everyone in the world was fed a healthy, nutritious, organic diet, and not exposed to the billions of toxins we all deal with on a daily basis. Since that is an impossible dream, I instead encourage people to remove as many toxins from their life as possible, and be sure to supplement with plenty of antioxidants to help your body deal with the rest.

    Best of luck,

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