The zinc tally test was developed by professor Derek Bryce-Smith, Professor of Biochemistry at Reading University. After reading some recent research on “supertasters”, it turns out the tally test is only valid for a certain type of taster. If you are not familiar with the zinc tally test, please view my article to understand more before continuing….
- Approximately, 25% of people are known to be “supertasters,” 50% are medium tasters, and 25% are nontasters. (1)
Through my experience using the zinc tally test in my practice, I have noticed:
Some people taste zinc tally upon immediate contact and need to spit it out, which indicates a passed tally test (intense taste in the first 2 seconds also qualifies as a pass). Here is the caveat, I have had a clients whom are supertasters pass the tally test, but show a zinc deficiency upon measuring systemic levels via blood test. The medium tasters seem to have a higher correlation when comparing zinc tally test results to blood-work. The nontasters can fail the test even when their blood levels are within normal range or in high levels beyond normal range!
Supertasters are at risk for testing falsely on zinc tally and may be missing out on needed zinc supplementation. What’s the solution? Simply cross check via blood test.
Medium tasters are best suited to accurately respond to the tally test. However, even with medium tasters I strongly believe checking systemic levels is responsible and necessary.
Nontasters are at risk for overdosing on zinc supplementation when relying solely on the zinc tally test. Nontasters especially need to make sure to cross check their levels via blood test.
Generally speaking, I suggest blood testing testing on a regular basis especially when you are dosing up on a particular supplement(s) to reverse a deficiency. For example, testing Vitamin D3 levels are very important for anyone interested in obtaining optimal health. There are many people who are D3 deficient and need to take oral D3 to bring levels up to normal. During D3 dosing, it is necessary to test every 2-3 months to be sure you are not pushing it up to unhealthy levels. There has been documented cases of D3 overdosing which leads to abnormally high calcium levels in the body creating kidney stones (among many other things).
I can’t stress enough, if you are taking a supplement – due your due diligence and test every 2-3 months (particularly if it is a fat soluble vitamin or a mineral such as magnesium or zinc.)
Picture of Red Blood Cell by Jon McGovern