Every year I notice a pattern in the kinds of germs people are getting and what they respond to. Germs change and seem to respond to different remedies form the previous year. This year some people have started to get colds or flu like symptoms earlier than normal and already there appears to be a need for vitamin C. Therefor this season, in 2019, I thought I would dedicate this article to vitamin C.
Vitamin C is one of the oldest vitamins studied. It is a water soluble nutrient so does not store in the body. Most people know of the benefits for the immune system, yet vitamin C also has an important role in antioxidant use (hence heart health, cardiovascular health, free radical prevent, skin), weight loss (low vitamin C has been linked to lower carnitine), neurotransmitters (vitamin C helps in synthesis of neurotransmitter norepinephrine from dopamine) and protein metabolism.
Types of vitamin C we use at the clinic.
Ascorbic acid is the scientific name for Vitamin C which comes in various forms – the two most common ones used are mineral ascorbates and of these calcium and sodium ascorbate are the most popular.
Calcium Ascorbate –this is a great vitamin C used to prevent or treat low vitamin C levels. It is non toxic yet in very high levels can cause diarrhoea, gas and stomach upsets. Overall calcium ascorbate is an excellent form of Vitamin C. A little snippet of extra knowledge is that 1000mg of Calcium Ascorbate lifts calcium by 90-110mg. And calcium in this form looks like it is well absorbed. This is worth noting for people that cannot take normal calcium supplementation with osteoporosis.
Sodium Ascorbate – This form of Vitamin C like the calcium ascorbate is very well absorbed. It also can cause loose bowel motions if taken in a high dose. The other thing to be aware of is the sodium component if you are required to be on a lower sodium diet.
Liposomal Vitamin C
Liposomes are tiny “nano-size” fat soluble vehicles for carrying nutrients into the body’s cells. Dr Alec Banham, a haematologist at the Babraham Institute in Cambridge, UK discovered the liposomal technology. The word “Lipo” is a Greek word meaning fats while “soma” means body. They are a double layer of fatty materials similar to the phospholipid bilayer of the cell membranes in the body.
Liposomal vitamin C is packaged like a bodily cell so it passes through the digestive barrier and delivers the nutrient directly to the bloodstream. This has a much higher absorption rate with over 90% of the cells being bathed in vitamin C. This is vastly superior to intravenous Vitamin C which is an expensive but effective procedure that is done quite often in hospitals and alternative health clinics. The best carrier for liposomal vitamin C is phosphatidyl choline (PC) which helps to hold the liposomes together. This PC should be derived from a non-GMO soy or sunflower lecithin form. Here at the clinic we are fussy about the carriers and will suggest the right liposomal if appropriate.
These are the polyphenolic compounds found in plants.
My Favourite - Quercetin– is a plant pigment that is found naturally in things like green tea, gingko, onions, cranberries, tomatoes and green tea. I love this substance for it is immune boosting, anti-inflammatory, healthy aging and great for circulation integrity. It is also known to be anti cancerous, due to its effect on fighting free radical damage. Not to mention helps in all these conditions:
Allergies, asthma and hayfever
Eye related conditions
Circulation- ulcer repair or prevention, heart disease, atherosclerosis
Supplements and or Tea – I love this form of Vitamin C for many people that cannot take a normal supplement of vitamin C as it is gentle on the digestive tract yet has a high antioxidant component and also great for joints.
Vitamin C in foods.
Ascorbic acid occurs naturally in many fruits and vegetables such as:
Red peppers - 95mg / ½ cup
Green peppers – 60mg /1/2 cup
Orange juice - 93mg/3/4 cup
Oranges – 70 mg/medium orange
Grapefruit juice - 70mg/3/4 cup
Kiwifruit – 64mg /kiwifruit
Broccoli 51mg /per ½ cup cooked broccoli
Strawberries 49mg /1/2 cup
Brussel sprouts 48mg/1/2 cup
The recommended requirement for Vitamin C is not that high. Recommended dose is 75mg for females and 90 mg for males and less for children however more for pregnant and breast feeding women.
The requirement increases with smokers and people on certain medications. Medications like anti inflammatories, birth control medications, diuretics and asprin all deplete Vitamin C. Vitamin C supplements have a higher dose than the recommended daily need as demand of Vitamin C is higher when used medicinally for conditions or depletion.
Talk to your practitioner about the best Vitamin C for you.