Vitamin C is vital to all parts of your body. In fact, it helps all your body tissues grow and develop properly, while repairing any damage along the way. Further, it helps form collagen, absorb iron, improve immune system function, and maintain bones, teeth, and cartilage. Plus, it helps protect your body from free radicals, or harmful molecules, that result from tobacco use. As a result, Vitamin C helps protect you from heart disease, cancer, and arthritis.
What happens when you have low levels of Vitamin C?
Your body doesn’t make Vitamin C. Rather, you have to get this vitamin from food. So, a Vitamin C deficiency is rare. Usually, only malnourished adults have this issue. Still, symptoms of low levels of Vitamin C include:
- Loose teeth
What are the benefits of High Dose Vitamin C?
High Dose Vitamin C has many benefits for your entire body. Here are some of them:
- Low levels of Vitamin C lead to many stress-related diseases. For instance, Vitamin C is the first nutrient lost in alcoholism, tobacco-use, and obesity. So, it is vital to maintain healthy levels of Vitamin C to promote your overall health.
- Research shows that eating fruits and vegetables increases your Vitamin C level. And it lowers your risk of a stroke by 42%.
- Although Vitamin C is not a cure for a common cold, studies show that it lowers your risk of severe complications like pneumonia and lung infections.
- Aging of the skin. Vitamin C helps with cell inside and outside of your body. In fact, this vitamin improves dry skin, wrinkles, and overall appearance of aging skin.
- Lower inflammation.
- Reduce risk of cancer and heart disease.
- Improve macular degeneration.
What are the side effects of Vitamin C?
For most people, there are no known side effects of Vitamin C if you take the recommended dosage. However, if you exceed 1000mg Vitamin C daily, you could experience:
- Stomach cramps
If you take more than 2000mg Vitamin C daily, you could experience severe diarrhea and kidney stones.
Who should take caution with Vitamin C?
Unfortunately, there are many groups of people that should take caution with Vitamin C, such as:
- Pregnant and breast-feeding women. Taking more than 2000mg daily is unsafe for women 19+ years old. And taking more than 1800mg daily is unsafe for women 14-18 years old.
- Infants and children. UNSAFE in children:
– 1-3 years old: more than 400mg daily
– 4-8 years old: more than 650mg daily
– 9-13 years old: more than 1200mg daily
– 14-18 years old: more than 1800mg daily
- Alcohol destroys Vitamin C levels by excreting it in urine. So frequent alcohol users may need a longer form of treatment to restore healthy Vitamin C levels.
- Kidney disease. Vitamin C may raise oxalate levels in the urine of some people. As a result, this increases the risk of kidney failure in people with kidney disease.
- Cancerous cells have high levels of Vitamin C. So only take high doses of Vitamin C with the approval of your oncologist.
- Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency. This metabolic deficiency may cause red blood cells to break with high levels of Vitamin C.
- Tobacco Use. Chewing and smoking tobacco lowers your Vitamin C levels. Raise these levels through your diet.
- (History of) Kidney Stones. Too much Vitamin C increases your risk of kidney stones. Avoid taking more than what is recommended on multivitamins.
Are there any interactions between Vitamin C and other drugs?
Vitamin C has interactions with multiple drugs. Here is a list of all the moderate interactions between Vitamin C and other drugs:
- Fluphenazine (Prolixin)
- HIV/AIDS medications (Protease Inhibitors)
- Lowering cholesterol medications (Statins)
- Warfarin (Coumadin)
- Cancer medications (Chemotherapy)
Here is a list of all the mild interactions Vitamin C has with other drugs:
- Choline Magnesium Trisalicylate (Trilisate)
- Acetaminophen (Tylenol, others)
- Nicardipine (Cardene)
- Salsalate (Disalcid)
How much Vitamin C should you take a day?
You can take up to 1,000mg without side effects like stomach pain, flatulence, severe diarrhea, and kidney stones. Here is a chart with recommended dosage based on the method, situation, age, and gender.
|Mouth||General (Men)||90 mg|
|Mouth||General (Women)||75 mg|
|Mouth||General (Infants 0-12 months)||Breast milk|
|Mouth||General (Children 1-3)||15 mg|
|Mouth||General (Children 4-8)||25 mg|
|Mouth||General (Children 9-13)||45 mg|
|Mouth||General (Girls 14-18)||65 mg|
|Mouth||General (Boys 14-18)||75 mg|
|Mouth||Pregnancy/Breast-feeding (18 & under)||115 mg|
|Mouth||Pregnancy/Breast-feeding (19-50)||120 mg|
|Mouth||Vitamin C deficiency||100-250 mg daily (twice a day for scurvy)|
|Mouth||Irregular heartbeat||1-2 g daily for 1-3 before surgery
1-2 g (divided in 2 doses) daily for 4-5 days after surgery
|Mouth||Common cold||1-3 g daily|
|Mouth||High cholesterol||500 mg daily for at least 4 weeks|
|Mouth||High blood pressure||500 mg daily + blood pressure medication|
|Skin||Redness from injury or irritation||Creams with 10% vitamin C, 2% zinc sulfate, and 0.5% tyrosine
Apply daily for 8 weeks.
|Skin||Wrinkles from sun damage||Creams containing 3% to 30% vitamin C
Avoid eye area, clothes, and hair.
|IV||Irregular heartbeat||2 g 1-2 times the day before surgery
1-2 g daily for 4-5 days after surgery
|IV||Post-op pain relief||3 g during the first 30 minutes of surgery|