The Effect of Zinc Supplementation on Insulin Resistance in Obese Subjects: a Systematic Review

Biol Trace Elem Res. 2017 Apr;176(2):239-243. doi: 10.1007/s12011-016-0835-8. Epub 2016 Sep 1.


Obesity is a chronic disease characterized by excessive accumulation of body fat and the presence of metabolic disorders such as insulin resistance. In this sense, zinc is an important nutrient that stimulates insulin secretion and increases sensitivity to insulin. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of zinc supplementation on insulin resistance in obese subjects through a systematic review of the available clinical trials. The search for articles was conducted using the PubMed, SciVerse Scopus, SciVerse ScienceDirect, and Cochrane databases, on May 25, 2016, by two authors independently. The recommendations of the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) were followed in the conduct of this review. The Cochrane Collaboration tool was used to assess the risk of bias of the trials included in this review. After screening of the articles, six clinical trials were included in this systematic review. The scientific evidence presented in this systematic review shows that zinc supplementation improves insulin resistance in obese individuals of both sexes.

Keywords: Insulin resistance; Obesity; Zinc.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Humans
  • Insulin Resistance*
  • Obesity / drug therapy*
  • Zinc / administration & dosage*
  • Zinc / pharmacology*


  • Zinc