|Also known as: ascorbic acid|
What is it?
|It wrought so well that if all
the physicians of Montpelier and Louaine had been there, with all the
drugs of Alexandria, they would not have done as much in one year as that
tree did in six days." Thus spoke French explorer Jacques Cartier in 1535
on his second voyage to Newfoundland after seeing Native Americans cure
his men of scurvy with a strong sassafras tea. In 1747, a British Navy
surgeon experimenting with sailors' rations showed that those given
oranges and lemons each day were cured of scurvy. Throughout the following
years, British naval surgeons' medicine chests included concentrated syrup
of lemon juice (or lime, as the Brits called it, which is why British
sailors are known as limeys). Another 173 years would pass before
researchers extracted this antiscorbutic substance from orange juice and
named it vitamin C. We now know that ascorbic acid is a particularly
versatile VITAMIN. It's integral to the building and maintenance of
collagen, a PROTEIN or "glue" that holds the body's cells in place. It's
indispensable to bones and teeth (for much the same reason), to blood
vessels, to the healing of wounds. Further, vitamin C helps metabolize
several AMINO ACIDS and hormones. It's a powerful ANTIOXIDANT, too,
helping the body rid itself of carcinogenic by-products of metabolism
called free radicals. There's even strong evidence that vitamin C may
raise blood levels of HDL, or "good"cholesterol, which helps flush fatty
deposits from the arteries, thereby reducing the risk of cardiovascular
disease. Or so studies at the National Institute on Aging and the USDA
indicate. But researchers are quick to point out that beyond 345
milligrams of vitamin C per day for men and 215 milligrams for women, the
HDL boosting stops.
Severe deficiency results in scurvy, an acute or chronic disease characterized by hemorrhagic manifestations and abnormal osteoid and dentin formation. In adults, primary deficiency is usually due to food idiosyncrasies or improper diet. Deficiencies occur in GI disease, especially when the patient is on an "ulcer diet." Pregnancy, lactation, and thyrotoxicosis increase vitamin C requirements; acute and chronic inflammatory diseases, surgery, and burns can significantly increase requirements. Diarrhea increases fecal loss, and achlorhydria decreases the amount absorbed. Cold or heat stress increases urinary excretion of vitamin C. Heat (eg, sterilization of formulas, cooking) can destroy vitamin C in food.
Citrus fruits, strawberries, green and red peppers, collard and mustard greens, broccoli, spinach, tomatoes, potatoes, kiwi, guava and parsley.
Vitamin C is a very misunderstood vitamin. The government
is responsible for this because they have decided that you rate any vitamin C
product according to the amount of ascorbic acid it contains. Ascorbic acid is
an antioxidant. It is the preservative part of the C complex. To refine out or
to synthesize the preservative, in our opinion, is a mistake. The real vitamin
C complex contains the P factors, which maintain vascular integrity. These are
deficient in people who bruise easily or who have "pink toothbrush." Their blood
vessels break too easily and bleed. The P factors strengthen the vascular system.
They make the vessels tougher and more durable. Vitamin K is another part of the
C complex. It promotes prothrombin.
That means it helps in coagulation (blood clotting). Bleeders do not have enough
vitamin K. Another factor in the C complex is J. The J factor is the part of the
C complex which increases the oxygen carrying capacity of the blood. If you have
a cold, you want to get oxygen to your tissues where it oxidizes the toxins and
carries them off as carbon dioxide and water.*
Standard Process™ Supplements