Vitamin C is an antioxidant that is required for at least three hundred metabolic functions in the body, including tissue growth and repair, adrenal gland function, and healthy gums. It also aids in the production of anti-stress hormones and interferon, an important immune system protein, and is needed for the metabolism of folic acid, tyrosine and phenylalanine. Studies have shown that taking vitamin C can reduce symptoms of asthma. It protects against the harmful effects of pollution, helps to prevent cancer, protects against infection, and enhances immunity. Vitamin C increases the absorption of iron. It can combine with toxic substances, such as certain heavy metals, and render them harmless so that they can be eliminated from the body.
Most people know of vitamin C and its perceived ability to prevent the common cold. But over the years there has been conflicting data on vitamin C and its effect on colds. And the data remains conflicting. Recently, a group of researchers with the Cochrane Collaboration Reviews, the largest medical literature database, looked at the effect of vitamin C and its use in the treatment of the common cold in over 11,000 people. They found that for intakes of vitamin C greater than 200 milligrams, vitamin C reduced the duration and severity of common cold symptoms but not the number of colds someone gets in a year. However, in extreme physical stress as experienced by marathon runners and skiers, vitamin C reduced the common cold risk by half. Another group of scientists found that vitamin C (when individuals used 500milligrams per day) reduced the frequency of common cold but did not affect the duration or severity.
This vitamin also may reduce levels of low-density lipoproteins (LDL. The so-called “bad cholesterol”), while increasing levels of high-density lipoproteins (HDL) or “good cholesterol”), as well as lowering high blood pressure and helping to prevent atherosclerosis. Essential in the formation of collagen, vitamin C protects against abnormal blood clotting and bruising, may reduce the risk of cataracts, and promotes the healing of wounds and burns. It may even boost your love life by causing more of the hormone oxytocin to be released.
Vitamin C has been useful in managing Helicobacter pylori (commonly known as H.pylori). H.pylori is a bacteria that grows in the stomach and may result in pain, gas, and bloating. Using 1000 milligrams of vitamin C, in combination with drugs to treat the condition, allowed for less of the drugs to be used, which resulted in a cost savings to the patients.
Vitamin C works synergistically with both vitamin E and beta-carotene—that is, when these vitamins work together, they have an effect even greater than the sum of their individual effects, and taking them together may counter potential adverse effects of taking these vitamins alone. Long-term users of vitamin E and C in combination seem to have higher cognitive abilities as they age, as reported by a 2003 study.
Vitamin E scavenges for dangerous free radicals in cell membranes, while vitamin C attacks free radicals in biologic fluids. These vitamins reinforce and extend each other’s antioxidant activity.
Because the body cannot manufacture vitamin C, it must be obtained through the diet or in the form of supplements.
It was once thought that most of the vitamin C consumed in the diet was lost in the urine, although this idea is being challenged because initial studies apparently failed to account for the half-life or consistent decreasing rate of elimination from the blood, of the vitamin in the original calculations.
If you required larger-than-normal amounts of vitamin C due to serious illness, such as cancer, it is more effective to take it intravenously, under the supervision of a physician, than it is to take high doses orally.
Scurvy is a disease caused by vitamin C deficiency. It is characterized by poor wound healing, soft and spongy bleeding gums, edema, extreme weakness and “pinpoint” hemorrhages under the skin. Fortunately, this condition is rare in Western societies. More common are signs of lesser degrees of deficiency, including gums that bleed when brushed, increased susceptibility to infection, especially colds and bronchial infections; joint pains; lack of energy poor digestion; prolonged wound healing time; a tendency to bruise easily; and tooth loss
Vitamin C is found in berries, citrus fruits, and green vegetables. Good sources include asparagus, avocados, beet greens, black currants, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cantaloupe, collards, dandelion greens, dulse, grapefruit, kale, lemons, mangos, mustard greens, onions, orange, papayas, green peas, sweet peppers, persimmons, pineapple, radishes, rose hips, spinach, strawberries, Swiss chard, tomatoes, turnip greens, and watercress. Orange juice is an excellent source of vitamin C but only if it is freshly squeezed or has been processed by methods that don’t involve heating or pasteurization. While freshly squeezed juice is best, frozen juices are often processed by nonthermal methods and can be good source of vitamin C. Some so-called fruit drinks have added vitamin C, and although they are not as good a choice as real fruit juices, they are preferable to carbonated beverages that are devoid of any nutrients.
Herbs that contain vitamin C
Alfalfa, burdock root, cayenne, chickweed, eyebright, fennel seed, fenugreek, hops, kelp, peppermint, mullein, nettle, oat straw, paprika. Parsley, pine needle, plantain, raspberry leaf, red clover, rose hips, skullcap, violet leaves, yarrow, and yellow dock.
The Vitamin C the Best Supplements has found to be the most superior and recommends is PureWay C.
The Most Advanced Form of Vitamin C Available
• absorbed 120% more than Ester C at 30 minutes
• absorbed 233% more that ascorbic acid at 30 minutes
• retained in the blood 100% more than Ester-C at 24 hours
• buffered and non-acidic
PureWay-C is a unique form of Vitamin C with ascorbic acid and lipid metabolites. The lipid metabolites are fat-soluble compounds that increase Vitamin C’s function in the body. Numerous scientific studies show PureWay-C to be more rapidly absorbed and leads to higher Vitamin C levels in blood plasma, cells and tissue. This leads to increased wound healing properties, increased protection of the immune system from inflammatory processes and higher free radical scavenging capabilities.