Vitamin C: what to take, how to take, and why take

The NYBC purchasing co-op stocks several different choices for those who wish to supplement with Vitamin C. We are in the cold season in North America, after all, and, yes, there is evidence that Vitamin C has some effect in shortening the duration and decreasing the intensity of colds. But there are other reasons as well to supplement with this critical antioxidant Vitamin–see some details below.

1. Super C Powder (SuperNutrition).</ Each bottle, 82 grams of sugar-free powder. Each one half teaspoon contains:

Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid/Ascorbate) – MG – 1,690
Sodium (as sodium bicarbonate) – MCG – 57.5
Potassium (As Chloride & Succinate) – MG – 50
Other Ingredients
Bicarbonate (from sodium & potassium bicarbonate) – MG – 175
Natural Lemon flavoring (from lemons) – Trace

Suggested use is to sip, over 10-15 minutes, a quarter teaspoon in at least one half cup of water (for 845 mg of vitamin C). Or 1/2 tsp in one half cup of water for 1690 mg of C, or a full tsp in a full cup of water for 3,380 mg of vitamin C. Remember that taking too high a dose of C all at once can cause diarrhea!

2. Esterol (Allergy Research Group). Each bottle, 200 tablets. Each tablet contains 675 mg of ester C polyascorbate, 75 mg of calcium polyascorbate, 50 mg of rutin, 25 mg of quercetin, and 2.5 mg of grape seed proanthocyanidins (antioxidant compounds which are also found in high concentrations in blueberries).

This ARG product contains ascorbic acid and calcium in a formulation designed to enhance absorption and retention of vitamin C. (One of the problems in supplementing with Vitamin C is rapid removal from the system.) The ester formulation is non-acidic and should be minimally irritating to the intestines.

ARG Info Sheet on Esterol:

http://www.allergyresearchgroup.com/proddesc/discuss/EsterolPDFProductSheet011106.pdf

3. C powder, Calcium Ascorbate (Source Naturals) Each bottle, 8 ounces of vitamin C as calcium ascorbate. A serving of 1/2 a rounded teaspoon (about 2.7 grams) provides 2,150 mg of vitamin C as calcium ascorbate and 245 mg of calcium. This is a non-acidic form of vitamin C and thus will not harm the teeth (as a powdered ascorbic acid might). It also provides a bit of extra calcium.

4. C1000 – Ascorbic Acid plus Olea Fruit Extract (Jarrow) Vitamin C Overview: Vitamin C is another critical nutrient, an antioxidant and highly efficient free radical scavenger, antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal which should be in any HIV protocol. Vitamin C is responsible for the reactivation of key antioxidants, particularly vitamin E, beta-carotene, and glutathione, after they have been oxidized by donating electrons to neutralize a free radical (known as the redox process). Vitamin C and certain sulfur amino acids are the only water-soluble nutrients which can be taken in sufficiently large, yet safe, quantities to effectively conduct this redox process. Vitamin C is available in both quick and slow release tablets, powders, as well as esterified form (vitamin C chemically bonded with one or more minerals in a compound containing aldonolactones; (see U.S. patent #4,822,816) and effervescent forms. However, note that the Vitamin C Foundation flat out states that ascorbic acid is the only worthwhile vitamin C and everything else is just marketing nonsense. They claim there is no convincing evidence to support superior bioavailability of these other forms that supports their excessive cost. (Of course, take any powdered form of ascorbic acid with care to avoid damaging tooth enamel.)

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