If there is a singular vitamin that needs every human’s attention more than the others it may very well be Vitamin C.
Vitamin C is not essential for 99% of mammals, meaning they produce their own in their livers. Somewhere in our history we lost this ability and now rely on vitamin C from our diet to meet our bodily needs. Unfortunately, we aren’t doing a very good job of keeping up with the demand, especially when we consider what our mammalian relatives are producing daily.
Since the vitamin ‘experts’ in our Government like to use animal studies to equate our recommended daily values, why not use it for Vitamin C? When we account for body mass differences many mammals are producing upwards of 15000mg daily – especially during times of stress. Our daily recommended intake is a pathetic 90mg, about enough for a small mouse. Primates also lack the ability to manufacture their own Vitamin C, and when primates are used for animal studies and kept for research it is extremely expensive and they must be kept healthy and without illness and disease – with this in mind researchers often give these primates doses equivalent for 70 times what they recommend for us. What is it that they know but aren’t telling us? If they want to keep monkeys healthy they provide them with doses of greater than 6000mg daily, yet recommend less than 100mg for us. Something tells me we aren’t taking anywhere near optimal amounts.
So how do you know if you are in need of Vitamin C, how do you know if you should be taking a Vitamin C supplement? Well, odds are you should be and nearly every human would benefit from increasing their vitamin C intake, but we will go through exactly how to find out.
Back in the 1700’s many men were dying of scurvy, which is the end result of prolonged Vitamin C deficiency, and most people are familiar with this term and this illness. But people were also dying of pneumonia, measles, mumps, tuberculosis and a host of other illnesses. So back in the 1700’s when there were no blood tests how did they know if someone had died of scurvy or pf pneumonia?
The answer is precisely how we determine our level of need – they simply looked at the symptoms since Vitamin C deficiency has very tell tale signs and symptoms, it is unmistakable. Over the last 300+ years our knowledge of vitamin C’s roles within the body and as well as what happens when the human body does not receive vitamin C have increased exponentially, like our understanding of almost everything has.
The problem in the 1700’s when so many people were dying of scurvy is that Vitamin C had not even been discovered, so when they saw the telltale signs appearing they had no idea how to prevent or reverse it. Now we know.
We can look at the signs and symptoms that we have studied for over 300 years and tell quite easily if someone is lacking vitamin C simply by those very signs that we have documented over and over again in clinical trials.
The symptoms we want to consider for vitamin C insufficiency are:
- Skin bruises easily (black and blue marks)
- Gums bleed (especially brushing/flossing teeth)
- Loose teeth or loss of fillings
- Susceptible to colds/flus
- Wounds heal slowly
- Cuticle tear easily
- Premature aging of skin
- Broken capillaries/blood vessels (pink spots on skin)
- Lack of endurance (tire easily)
You will need to experience 3 or more of these symptoms to accurately assume you are lacking vitamin C as 1 or 2 symptoms alone could be attributed to other causes.
Of course the more severe or frequent these symptoms are manifesting, the more vitamin C you are therefore in need of. But, we also need to consider what you may be doing that depletes vitamin C from your body, as this is actually quite terrifying when you look at it.
Aspirin alone destroys millions of vitamin C molecules with every pill, and there may be some of you out there who take aspirin on a daily basis, completely wiping out your vitamin C reserves, if you have any at all. Smoking also really strips the body of vitamin C and requires additional supplementation to prevent the extreme oxidative damage done by smoking.
Some of the other lesser known antagonists are:
- Birth control pills
- High fever
Now stress isn’t listed there but it truly wipes the body of vitamin C stores, and as I mentioned earlier we know based on animal studies that when under stress animals vitamin C requirements can increase by 500%. So if you are under stress are you consuming 500% more vitamin C, odds are you should be as vitamin C is directly used by the adrenal glands, in fact the highest concentration of vitamin C in the body is in the adrenal glands. Think about that when you consider your vitamin C intake.
So, you need to take vitamin C and you don’t like taking supplements, well I have a list of the foods with the highest vitamin C content for you to use. But keep in mind, if you are very deficient, using a powder version of vitamin C (in water) is a quick and easy way to boost levels. This is my preferred method of taking vitamin C and for years I have taken 5000mg or more daily in divided doses. If you take vitamin C and have loose stools it is not something to be concerned about, it just means you reached your tolerance and you should taper down slightly. This is actually how I instruct most of my clients to find their optimal dose. I advocate taking vitamin C to bowel tolerance and then reduce it slightly. In divided doses most people can easily tolerate 2000-3000 mg at once, and taken 3 times daily.
For the food option you are going to want to consume ample amounts of:
- Acerola berries
- Rose hips
- Oranges (Spanish)
- Chilli powder/peppers
- Tomato juice
- Swiss chard
- Grapefruit juice
This is the best and only viable way to understand if you need vitamin C. Blood testing does not exist so how are you really supposed to know if you are getting enough? There is no method out there and that is precisely why I have developed and successfully used this method for many years now.
HAVE A WONDERFUL DAY!