The Role of Minerals in COVID-19: An Umbrella Review


  • Claudine Van De Venter ARRCIM Complementary and Integrative Medicine Research Leadership and Capacity Building Program, University of Technology Sydney, Ultimo, NSW, Australia; Public Health, Cape Town, Western Province, South Africa
  • Cécile Konn Triskell Naturopathie, Pont en Royans, Isère, France
  • Monica Noreen Doherty Elemental Herbal, Mildura, VIC, Australia
  • Renée Purdy Independent scholar, Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada



Supplements, selenium, zinc, magnesium, iron, phospherous, calcium, deficiency


Background: This umbrella review aims to synthesize the existing literature on the preventive and therapeutic benefits of minerals zinc, selenium, iron, copper, magnesium, phosphorus, and calcium in the context of COVID-19 prevention and management. The objective is to highlight the clinical applicability and identify avenues of future research.

Methods: A systematic search was conducted in PubMed and Google Scholar databases using predefined keywords for each mineral combined with COVID-19–related terms. Narrative and systematic reviews were included, following Cochrane guidelines. AMSTAR scoring was used to assess systematic review quality, while SANRA guidelines were used to evaluate narrative reviews. Data extraction and synthesis were performed, and reference overlap analysis was conducted (see Table S1 in the supplemental material).

Results: Narrative reviews highlighted the range of therapeutic properties of minerals including antimicrobial, antiviral, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and immune-modulating and the essential role they play in the prevention and treatment of many conditions, including acute respiratory conditions such as COVID-19. The systematic reviews highlighted that deficiency of key minerals such as zinc, selenium, iron, copper, magnesium, phosphorus, and calcium are associated with increased risk of infection and decreased rate of recovery. Iron supplementation may be beneficial as functional anemia is common in those with COVID-19. Zinc supplementation may shorten the duration of olfactory dysfunction.

Conclusion/Summary: Deficiency of minerals may increase the risk of infection and decrease the rate of recovery as it relates to COVID-19. Supplementation with and correction of zinc, iron and selenium deficiencies may improve clinical outcomes and immune responses in those with COVID-19."


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How to Cite

Van De Venter C, Konn C, Doherty M, Purdy R. The Role of Minerals in COVID-19: An Umbrella Review. CANDJ [Internet]. 2023 Dec. 28 [cited 2024 Feb. 20];30(4):5-14. Available from:




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