Vitamin C

Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, plays a central role in our immune system as a powerful antioxidant and free radical scavenger for the defense against pathogens and to protect our cells. It also strengthens connective tissue, which is responsible for the elasticity of skin, ligaments, tendons and blood vessel walls as well as the strength of teeth and bones. Scar tissue also consists of collagen, which is why vitamin C is so important for wound healing. In the liver, it activates enzymes that are responsible for breaking down toxins.

Vitamin C Daily Dose

Humans used to be able to produce vitamin C in their own bodies. Most mammals can still do this, but humans, along with apes and guinea pigs, are no longer able to synthesize this important vitamin in their own cells. We must therefore obtain sufficient amounts of it from our diet.

Mammals such as goats, for example, can produce up to 200 mg of vitamin C per kg of body weight, which is equivalent to 14 g for a 70 kg human. In stressful situations, production would be even higher.

It therefore quickly becomes clear that the officially recommended daily dose of approx. 100 mg for an adult is at most sufficient to prevent scurvy, an extreme form of vitamin C deficiency disease, but is clearly too low to achieve the many benefits and protective effect of vitamin C.

Large quantities of vitamin C in our food are lost through transportation and storage of food, as well as through its processing and preparation. In addition, today we are exposed to high levels of environmental pollution, which leads to increased oxidative stress:

  • Physical and mental stress
  • Pesticide residues in food
  • Chemicals in personal care products, textiles, furniture, etc.
  • Air pollution
  • X-rays & electromagnetic fields (EMF)
  • Operations etc.

This increases the need for antioxidants. However, vitamin C is already vital for the normal functioning of the body. In view of the increased environmental pollution, a higher vitamin C intake should therefore be necessary in order to prevent illness. Read more about vitamin C deficiency.

The German Society for Orthomolecular Medicine (DGOM) therefore recommends the following daily doses:

  • Newborns: 50 mg
  • In the 1st year of life: 30 mg per kg body weight, increase to 500 to 1000 mg by the end of the first year of life
  • From the 2nd year of life until the end of life: 50 to 100 mg per kg body weight
  • Breastfeeding mothers: at least 2000 mg vitamin C per day

According to the DGOM, a person weighing 60 kg should therefore consume 3000 to 6000 mg of vitamin C per day – for a person weighing 80 kg, this would be 4000 to 8000 mg.

High-dose Vitamin C

In cancer therapy, high-dose infusions with 15 g of vitamin C per infusion and more are often administered several times a day and studies show a much higher survival rate.

The form in which vitamin C is taken is also decisive for its absorption in the small intestine:
As a water-soluble vitamin, the easiest way to take it is in powder form stirred into a drink or as a capsule.

As pure ascorbic acid in doses of > 1 g per dose can lead to gastrointestinal complaints in sensitive people, it is advisable to take larger quantities throughout the day. Moreover, if large doses are taken at once, not all of the vitamin C can be absorbed, which means that a large proportion is excreted without any effect.

Buffered vitamin C preparations (such as calcium ascorbate) are better tolerated and at the same time ensure a sufficient supply of calcium. However, care must be taken with high doses to ensure that too much calcium is not ingested in combination with other foods in order to prevent side effects such as kidney stones.

Liposomal Vitamin C

Liposomal vitamin C is a special form of vitamin C.

During production, the water-soluble vitamin C is coated with a so-called phospholipid layer. This fatty coating (sunflower lecithin or soy lecithin) means that the vitamin C is better absorbed in the small intestine and therefore reaches the blood and cells much faster.

According to various studies, the bioavailability of liposomal vitamin C is two to ten times higher than in tablet or powder form, which is why less vitamin C needs to be taken to achieve the same active level in the blood plasma. However, liposomal vitamin C is more complex to produce and therefore significantly more expensive than vitamin C in powder form.

If you want to achieve very high vitamin C concentrations without an infusion in particularly stressful situations, liposomal vitamin C offers a good way of taking large amounts of vitamin C without any gastrointestinal problems or the risk of kidney stones etc.

Med. pract. Dana Hreus M.A.

Vitamin C has a high value in the human body. Before taking it, it is advisable to determine important parameters in order to avoid an imbalance.

Med. pract. Dana Hreus M.A.

Further information

The information listed contains relevant topics and serves to improve understanding.