Symptoms of Vitamin C Deficiency –

The majority of persons now don’t think about being deficient in vitamin C. There are so many existing sources we have to choose from that it doesn’t turn into a moment’s thought. From citrus fruits to pills, C is pushed constantly, especially all through the frosty time of the year. However are you truly getting all the C you need?

The only symptoms most people are familiar with when it comes to C deficiency are those associated with scurvy. Collagen is the glue that holds cells together, without vitamin C collagen is too weak to perform its task. This can lead to Unlike most animals who can synthesize their own C, we need to replenish ours because we can only store it for so long before it gets used up. That is why sailors on long voyages, explorers, and soldiers separated from C sources were prone to this disease.

Thanks to the discovery and isolation of vitamin C we do not have to worry as much about major C deficiencies. In spite of this, C deficiency does exist and has symptoms. The most common signs of mild vitamin C deficiency are weakness, poor healing of wounds, anemia, swollen gums, and nosebleeds. Edema (water retention), weakness, lack of energy, poor digestion, painful joints and bronchial infection and colds also occur with a shortage of vitamin C. Another thing to think about, low vitamin C in your body can have the same effects as depression and has been misdiagnosed as such.

The way to measure C is through a scientifc process called titration. This is a process of volumetric analysis used to find out how much vitamin C is concentrated in a vitamin source. By taking the vitamin source, either food, pill, liquid or any other source, straining and dissolving it and subjecting what’s left to a test called a redox reaction. This is based on an oxidizing agent and a reducing agent, in this case iodine, and watching a reaction occur. Basically the C reacts with the iodine and creates a blue color. As more reactant is added the color goes away, thus giving the formula needed to determine the C content.

How much C do we really need? That depends on who you talk to. The Recommended Daily Allowance is 45mg for children ages 4-16 and 75mg to 90mg for adults. Unfortunately, the number of people who get these basic amounts is pretty slim. For optimal antioxidant protection, studies have shown we need to ingest at least 500mg per day. Quite a bit more than the RDA.For those who are exposed to pollution regularly, have a high stress level, who are older, smoke or are around smokers, have a family history of heart disease or cancer, low physical activity, and are exposed to the sun a lot (this list could go on) the more C is needed.

So how much do the researchers take? Dr. Albert Szent who won the Nobel prize in 1937 for isolating pure vitamin C took 1,000mg until his 80’s when he started taking 2,000mg a day. Linus Pauling, one of the most influential chemists in history, suggested anywhere from 450mg to 4,500mg and even up to 10,000mg per day; in his 90’s he took up to 18,000mg per day. Bruce Miller, D.D.S., C.N.S., the author of Antioxidants Made Simple, takes 4,000mg per day and more if he feels a cold coming on.

Can’t an overdose occur with that much C? C is a water-soluble vitamin that can not be stored by the body. Once our bodies use it up we need to replenish. What our bodies do not use gets flushed our of our system. That is why it is important to have a consistent intake and why it is not possible to overdose.

In light of all this, how much C should you actually take? At the very least 100mg to 500mg per day to start. Taking at least 500mg a day will give you the most benefit. As you can see, some of the people who know C best have taken more than 10,000mg per day and had no adverse side effects.One thing you should be aware of when taking a lot of vitamin C, it can cause diahrrea and stomach upset if too much is taken at once. The best thing to do is spread it out throughout the day.If you are already taking nitrate medications for heart disease, you will want to talk to your doctor about taking a lot of vitamin C, a large amount can make them less effective.

Eating fresh fruits and veggies are a great way to get this vitamin, just plan on eating a lot throughout the day. Common sources include papaya, red bell peppers, tomatoes, hot green chilies, broccoli, cauliflower, oranges and all citrus fruits, strawberries, parsley, kale, mustard greens, spinach, cabbage, cantaloupe, watermelon, winter squash, onions, oregano, garlic and certain raw organ meats such as liver and heart. Being creative in how you eat can inspire you to stay on the path to better health.Most researchers recommend combining a high-quality vitamin C supplement and incorporating as much of theses foods into your diet as you can.


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