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SupraHealth: Vitamin C (ascorbic acid)
 

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Vitamin C
(ascorbic acid; ascorbate)

 
DESCRIPTION/FUNCTION

  • Vitamin C (ascorbic acid; ascorbate) is an essential nutrient for humans and most other animal species. It acts as an antioxidant by protecting the body against oxidative stress. It is also a cofactor in at least eight enzymatic reactions, including several collagen synthesis reactions. These reactions are especially important in wound healing and in preventing bleeding from capillaries. Vitamin C is also important in immune response, allergic reactions, and increasing absorption of nonheme (plant source) iron.

DRI (RDA or AI for Adults)

  • Males: 90 mg.
  • Females: 75 mg.
  • Smokers: an additional 35 mg.
  • Pregnancy: 85 mg.
  • Lactation: 120 mg.

MAJOR SOURCES

  • Acerola cherry, citrus fruit, peppers (green and red), strawberries, tomatoes, fruit (most), vegetables (especially green and raw).
  • Specifically: orange juice, grapefruit juice, papaya, strawberry, red pepper, cantaloupe, tomato juice, broccoli, mango, Brussels sprouts, peapods, green pepper, cauliflower, kale, red cabbage.

MAINTENANCE/THERAPEUTIC RANGE

  • 200 mg to 10,000 mg (or 90% of bowel tolerance).

POSSIBLE THERAPEUTIC APPLICATIONS

  • Allergies
  • Asthma
  • Cancer (gastric)
  • Cataracts
  • Common cold
  • Coronary heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Immune function
  • Infection
  • Macular degeneration
  • Memory loss
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Osteoporosis
  • Ulcers
  • Wound healing

COMMENTS

  • Vitamin C is an excellent antioxidant. It reduces oxidized vitamin E, and in turn, glutathione can reduce oxidized vitamin C. Most supplements contain vitamin C in the form of ascorbic acid. If the acidity is a problem, non-acidic forms exist as various salts, including calcium ascorbate and sodium ascorbate. There is a fat-soluble form of vitamin C called ascorbyl palmitate. There is little research supporting its use. The oxidized form of vitamin C, dehydroascorbic acid (dehydroascorbate) is also found in food. It can be converted back to ascorbic acid by glutathione. Also, vitamin C can cross the blood-brain barrier as dehydroascorbic acid, where it is then reduced back to ascorbic acid.

CAUTIONS

  • None significant. Large doses may interfere with some lab tests. Consult with your health practitioner if you have kidney stones, but it is not likely to be a problem.

 

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Copyright 2003 SupraHealth, Inc.
Last modified: 10/17/12
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