Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) is a water soluble vitamin that performs a wide variety of functions in your body. Most people know that Vitamin C is important for forming and maintaining connective tissue (skin, bones, blood vessels). But Vitamin C does so much more than that.
Vitamin C is an important factor in keeping your cardiovascular system healthy–helping to prevent heart attacks and strokes. It works to keep the lining of the blood vessels (endothelial cells) healthy. Endothelial dysfunction is linked to arterial plaque formation and Vitamin C helps to prevent this dysfunction. Vitamin C also assists your body in keeping blood pressure, blood sugar, and lipid (cholesterol) levels at healthy levels. All of these functions reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke.
Cancer prevention and treatment is another exciting thing that Vitamin C can assist with. Vitamin C can decrease the cellular DNA damage that leads to cancer formation–helping you to avoid cancer. It also has been shown to help kill cancer cells if they do form and to minimize the toxic effects of cancer treatments. Higher dose Vitamin C by IV is fast becoming a sought after treatment therapy for those with cancer.
In addition to these functions, Vitamin C is a wonderful aide to your immune system–helping your body to fight the common cold and other respiratory illnesses. Higher dose Vitamin C has been widely shown to diminish your symptoms and lessen the length of respiratory illnesses. It can even help alleviate chronic asthma symptoms.
The wonderful benefits of Vitamin C go on and on. It helps your body to absorb iron, it can reduce fatigue, it can improve eye health, and it can increase the fat suppressing hormone Leptin. Vitamin C is a powerful anti-oxidant that you need on a daily basis.
There are a wide variety of fruits and vegetables that contain Vitamin C. Good sources include citrus fruits (i.e. oranges), apples, kiwi, dark green leafy vegetables, asparagus, broccoli, cabbage, bell peppers, and tomatoes. Even though the recommended daily allowance is 75 mg/day for women and 90 mg/day for men; we are realizing that is just enough to prevent disease. For optimal health and wellness we feel that at least 400 mg/day is better.
If you do not get enough Vitamin C in your diet, taking a daily supplement is advised. I also like to add the IV Meyers cocktail (Vitamin C plus other nutrients) or high dose Vitamin C IV by itself if you are starting to feel ill from a respiratory illness, undergoing cancer treatment, or wish to optimize your overall health. Before a stressful event such as travel or surgery, I have found the IV Vitamin C to also be helpful.
Take care of your body and it will take care of you. Take the time to give your body the nutrients, exercise, sleep, and mental relaxation that it requires. You are worth it!!