IN­SIDE SCOOP

Got a health com­plaint? Chances are, vi­ta­min C can help

Amazing Wellness - - CONTENTS - By Vera Tweed

Fix What­ever Ails You Got a health com­plaint? Chances are, vi­ta­min C can help.

It’s easy to take vi­ta­min C for granted and un­der­es­ti­mate its po­ten­tial. But that’s a bad idea, says Thomas Levy, MD, au­thor of Cur­ing the In­cur­able: Vi­ta­min C, In­fec­tious Dis­eases, and Tox­ins. “It’s your most vi­tal an­tiox­i­dant,” he says, and one that can im­prove “what­ever ails you.”

In decades of prac­tice and re­search, Levy has seen just about ev­ery an­noy­ing symp­tom im­prove with vi­ta­min C sup­ple­men­ta­tion, from dif­fi­culty get­ting out of bed in the morn­ing to mus­cle aches to en­ergy sags, mi­nor joint pain, arthri­tis, and ten­sion headaches. “I’m not say­ing that they all go away,” he says, “but they im­prove.” And some symp­toms can, lit­er­ally, dis­ap­pear. Sur­pris­ingly, says Levy, “Stud­ies have ba­si­cally shown that vi­ta­min C by it­self will help re­verse os­teo­poro­sis, but there’s no way you can pos­si­bly get enough vi­ta­min C strictly through diet; you need sup­ple­men­ta­tion.”

Stud­ies have also shown that peo­ple with higher lev­els of vi­ta­min C are less likely to suf­fer from heart dis­ease, stroke, high blood pres­sure, bone frac­tures, can­cer, loss of men­tal fac­ul­ties in later years, cataracts, gout, type 2 di­a­betes, asthma at­tacks from ex­er­cise, lin­ger­ing colds, and even early death.

WHY IT’S A SU­PER AN­TIOX­I­DANT

In a sense, vi­ta­min C is twice as pow­er­ful as other an­tiox­i­dants. If you re­call sci­ence class, all mol­e­cules have elec­trons, but some of these are lost in the nor­mal course of life—more so when we’re ex­posed to stress, tox­ins, or ill­ness. The tech­ni­cal term for loss of elec­trons is “ox­i­da­tion.” On a molec­u­lar level, ox­i­da­tion is some­what anal­o­gous to a sol­dier be­ing in­jured in bat­tle, and it un­der­lies all forms of dis­ease, as well as the ag­ing process.

An­tiox­i­dants do­nate elec­trons to in­jured mol­e­cules, balanc­ing out ox­i­da­tion and keep­ing us healthy, but vi­ta­min C has a unique qual­ity. While an­tiox­i­dants gen­er­ally do­nate one elec­tron per mol­e­cule, vi­ta­min C do­nates two.

“That gives it sort of a dou­ble im­pact,” says Levy. And, he adds, it’s made up of tiny mol­e­cules that are more eas­ily ab­sorbed than other an­tiox­i­dants, wher­ever they’re needed in the hu­man body.

HOW TO USE VI­TA­MIN C

For op­ti­mum health, Levy rec­om­mends tak­ing enough vi­ta­min C to ex­pe­ri­ence an im­prove­ment in symp­toms, which likely means tak­ing at least sev­eral grams (sev­eral thou­sand mil­ligrams) of it daily. And we may need even more

dur­ing times of stress, ex­po­sure to tox­ins, or ill­ness.

If you take enough, Levy says, “Most of the time, it’s go­ing to blunt most of the symp­toms, and if you just have a lit­tle bit of dis­ease or a lit­tle bit of a prob­lem, you might feel com­pletely nor­mal with vi­ta­min C; that would be a very in­di­vid­u­al­ized sort of thing.”

Get­ting di­ar­rhea af­ter tak­ing vi­ta­min C means that you’ve taken more than your body can ab­sorb. Al­though the phe­nom­e­non can pro­vide a healthy cleanse, it isn’t rec­om­mended as a rou­tine. Split your daily dose into sev­eral smaller ones, take less per day, or take a “li­po­some” or “li­po­so­mal” form of the vi­ta­min, which is much less likely to trig­ger di­ar­rhea at high doses. Liq­uid li­po­some sup­ple­ments can be mixed into drinks or yo­gurts.

If you’re skit­tish about tak­ing large doses, start with a small amount, and grad­u­ally in­crease it. “There’s noth­ing wrong with start­ing low,” says Levy, “and go­ing slow.”

Gar­den of Life Vi­ta­min Code Raw Vi­ta­min C The Vi­ta­min Shoppe Vi­ta­min C 500 mg

So­laray Vi­ta­min C Two-Stage Timed Re­lease 1000 mg

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