Is Zinc the missing piece?

I am trying to connect the dots here so bare with me. Perhaps you can follow my logic.

My neurological symptoms, vision symptoms, skin symptoms, and cognitive issues lead me to think that perhaps I had Wilson’s disease (copper excess and deficiency at the same time). I got tested and found I had low ceruloplasmin (0.19, low range of normal being 0.20); I also found my free serum copper was 2x as high as it should be.

I had a ophthalmologist check my eyes and no sign of Kayser rings were present. So, I got a urine 24 hour test and literally ZERO copper was found. This is highly abnormal but not suggestive of Wilson’s. So, I began to think that I was suffering from copper dysregulation.

I believe the reason finasteride helps hair loss is by acting as a synthetic progesterone, thereby blocking DHT which causes the hair loss directly. However, what causes a lack of progesterone in the first place is a lack of zinc.

Going on finasteride helped my symptoms of low progesterone initially until the crash. The crash was the point at which I became copper toxic, due to still being deficient in zinc.

Anyways, as soon as I found out that I was having copper dysregulation I figured the problem was copper transport. Why was ceruloplasmin low? I read that vitamin A could increase Ceruloplasmin so I attempted to supplement. This brought on a horrible storm of symptoms of all kind and I crashed. I would try to supplement copper, and I would crash. So at this point I knew that vitamin A and Copper were messed up.

Then I began to think, why am I unable to process vitamin A? I then read that zinc enables vitamin A transport proteins to UTILIZE the vitamin A. I then discovered that supplementing with progesterone can DECREASE zinc levels (presumably this is like a feedback loop system). So supplementing finasteride MAY cause a similar decrease.

So taking finasteride was exacerbating an original zinc deficiency and produced a copper excess. I believe that supplementing Zinc can help restore vitamin A, which can help restore ceruloplasmin, which can then help to restore normal copper levels.

Why I had zinc deficiency to begin with, I don’t know, but I have heard that having other heavy metal imbalances can cause it (such as lead). This is something to look into further.

On a side note, my older brother took accutane for acne so clearly he had some kind of vitamin A malfunction or deficiency as well. I don’t know if it was from low zinc per se. Also, my twin brother suffered from similar problems as me before he went on SSRI’s. This points to a mineral imbalance as well. SSRI’s tend to normalize copper/zinc ratios.

Therefore , I believe we were both copper toxic and that zinc was the original solution to begin with, but that taking finasteride caused some kind of insane disease like Multiple sclerosis through its copper-heightening effects.

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The Copper/zinc relationship has been looked at quite a bit. Including by myself. I have tested zinc numerous times in perfect range. I have also supplemented zinc.
I get your logic, others have wondered the same, not only that some looked at zinc as a way of treating chronic vitamin a toxicity.
Fin guys have Androgen Receptor thoughts, Accutane guys have had retinoic acid receptor thoughts.

My biggest takeaway from looking at some of these low ceruloplasmin results is the simplest question,
Would copper itself raise the ceruloplasmin?
A person would need to take enough of a dosage to make a difference, 4mg in the morning then test that evening.

Outside of the realm of pfs, this amount is found in some foods and should be safe as a one off.
if some of these low ceruloplasmin numbers responded to copper, I think it could have some meaning, nothing primary when looking at pfs, but It could help to paint a picture. I believe ceruloplasmin is also an inflammation responder. So are some people becoming tapped out from one of the body’s defence mechanisms? Thats my biggest question in this and maybe the simplest to answer.

I just want to add im also personally aware copper can be very dangerous as well. It has the lowest toxicity threshold of any nutrient. They set the upper limit according to what doesnt start to cause liver damage.

I love reading this phrase time and time again. A patient who has a strange disease is unfortunately not going to have the same ranges as a person who is healthy. Testing for zinc and being optimal but still having side effects from a disease might mean that the ranges don’t fit your profile.

Some guys got PFS from taking high dose zinc. Its a strong 5ARI in higher doses. It has zero to do with copper/zinc ratio or any minerals.

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They should have supplemented manganese to correct because if you push the zinc too high it will act the same way as propecia by shutting down copper bioavailability and shutting down progesterone receptors.

If zinc is not going to help at our point, we need to reset progesterone receptor sensitivity. Then we can supplement with zinc+manganese. To reset progesterone (right now our progesterone is agonized by propecia so prog receptors are down regulated) we need to take something that antagonizes progesterone receptors. Not sure what that would be…

Stevia has been shown to be a progesterone antagonist but also a catsper agonist (bad for male fertility):

i have been supplementing 25-30 mg of zinc for the past 6 years (3 years before dutasteride). I dont think its zinc, not in my case atleast

Be extremely careful with zinc. I would urge extreme caution in particular for patients who took Accutane. Zinc enhances the effects of vitamin A: Accutane. Accutaners already took an extreme dose of vitamin A. You don’t want to radically enhance the effects of that.

Additionally, zinc has 5-AR inhibitory effects. You already took something that is a 5-AR inhibitor. That is why we are all in this mess. You are potentially opening yourself to a further level of hell, here.

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Has anyone ever gotten pfs that we know of just from taking too much zinc or another vitamin other than accutane?

People have done so via herbal stuff like Saw Palmetto - a 5-AR inhibitor. There are lots of things which can disrupt the enodcrine system and lead to problems. Unfortunately Propecia, Accutane and SSRIs are amongst the most intense.

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This is apparently something that can happen, through up regulation of progesterone by Zinc. But I don’t know of anyone…

Guys, I am CONVINCED that the issue is a functional (finasteride induced) copper DEFICIENCY.

My reasoning stems from the lab tests as well as my symptoms. All point to copper deficiency.

My theory, which begins from pre-finasteride, is as follows:

Copper toxicity and Zinc deficiency induces hair loss. This causes a hormonal cascade that is estrogen dominant and progesterone deficient. Taking finasteride acts as a progesterone which reverses the hair loss.

To build progesterone naturally, the body needs Zinc to transport Vitamin A, and Vitamin A is crucial for stimulating ceruloplasmin, which induces copper uptake and transport. So by taking Finasteride we have skipped the first step of Zinc, and the body is tricked into thinking there is sufficient Zinc. In reality, however, we are both deficient in Zinc and Vitamin A, and the body pisses out Zinc because it thinks we have too much of it.

Meanwhile, because of the induced Vitamin A deficiency, ceruloplasmin is low and copper uptake is therefore low as well. Ferritin would likely be low too. The body either cannot uptake copper, so upon ingesting copper it acts as a toxin, *or *, the false excess state of zinc in some regard blocks copper uptake, in the same way that taking too much of zinc will block copper uptake (not sure how this would work).

This results in low estrogen levels and low copper levels. Yes you might say estrogen is high based on blood tests but think about whether or not estrogen is actually targeting receptors. Similarly, you may test high for copper in the hair for example but that would be misleading because the body itself is not utilizing copper. It doesn’t matter if it happens to be storing it places. One would expect higher concentrations of copper in places like the liver and brain if we are unable to use it efficiently.

In essence, I believe our problem could be summarized as: functional zinc/copper deficiency-biounavailability, vitamin A biounavailability, or progesterone dominance.

This explains the low ceruloplasmin and urine copper labs, as well as the low ferritin count I had… Explains pale skin, thin skin, cognitive symptoms, twitches, etc. Explains why upon consuming vitamin A or copper products I feel terrible.

It would be interesting to see what results others have had in their zinc levels btw.