Vitamin C Health Benefits and Side Effects

| Modified: Jun 21, 2020
Add New Post Vitamin C Health Benefits and Side Effects

Vitamin C is an excellent natural remedy for many different health problems. Vitamin C is commonly suggested for colds, but it is also very useful to treat joint and muscle problems and heart issues. It is beneficial for skin health and fast wound healing.

Humans do not make their own vitamin C as many animals do. Nutrient depletion in soil in which food is grown, and poor quality diets make vitamin C deficiency common. When a body is stressed or sick, the need for vitamin C increases greatly. If you smoke, your vitamin C need will be greater. While many are aware that severe vitamin C deficiency can cause scurvy, mild to moderate vitamin C deficiency can cause all sorts of health problems, many of which may just be low grade scurvy.

Eye Health

Vitamin C benefits your eyes, as nearly all other body systems. Small blood vessels called capillaries, supply blood to your eyes. Vitamin C is important for the health of these blood vessels.  Vitamin C may lower your risk for cataracts.1

Bone, Joint, and Muscle Health

Vitamin C is necessary for collagen production. Collagen is in all parts of your body’s support system – bones, joints, muscles, etc. Vitamin C can help to reduce arthritis, joint pain, gout and inflammation.

Respiratory Health

Vitamin C is needed for respiratory health. It supports the immune system and reduces inflammation. Commonly used to prevent the flu and colds, larger doses of vitamin C are also useful for allergies and asthma because of its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effect.

Heart Health

Linus Pauling recommended vitamin C to prevent and reverse heart disease (taken along with lysine.) A Pubmed study also found vitamin C to be effective to prevent atrial fibrillation attacks.2

Skin Health

Vitamin C is needed to make collagen, part of the support structure in your skin and joints.

Taking Vitamin C internally will help your skin to look younger and repair itself more easily. Vitamin C serum can also be used topically to reduce wrinkles, acne scars, and blemishes.

Victims of severe burns are under tremendous stress. Vitamin C is recommended to reduce edema in burn victims.3 Vitamin C will also help the skin to heal more quickly, though it will need to be administered via IV under doctor supervision.

Brain and Nervous System Health

"During the neurodegeneration process a clear link exists between ascorbic acid deficiency and oxidative-induced neuronal death.”

In simpler terms, the brain and nervous system need vitamin C. Deficiencies lead to degeneration in the nervous system, which may be relate to a number of neurologically based conditions, including ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease), Parkinson’s Disease, and Alzheimer’s Disease.

Digestive System Health

While vitamin C is not usually the first supplement considered for digestive problems, vitamin C is needed for the tissue in the digestive tract to be healthy. Large doses of vitamin C may also be helpful to prevent digestive cancers like stomach cancer and colon cancer. Ulcers, gastritis, and H. Pylori can benefit from vitamin C supplementation and made worse by vitamin C deficiencies.5

Cancer and Vitamin C

Vitamin C has been used by some to treat basal cell carcinoma. 1/8 teaspoon of buffered vitamin C  is mixed with 1 teaspoon of distilled water and applied to the BCC three times daily until the area heals.

High doses of vitamin C, administered with an IV, can be toxic to some types of cancer cells.6 While this is not something that can be done at home, an increasing number of alternative practitioners are using IV Vitamin C therapy to treat cancer and other serious health problems.

What Kind of Vitamin C Should I Take?

Sodium ascorbate is a simple, inexpensive and effective form of vitamin C to use. You avoid the fillers and artificial colors and ingredients when you use a pure vitamin C powder. You also have control over the dose. Vitamin C powder is easily dissolved in a little bit of water or juice. It does not taste unpleasant.

How Much Vitamin C Should I Take?

If you are new to taking a vitamin C supplement, start with a small amount and increase slowly. Vitamin C is a water soluble vitamin and needs to be replenished frequently. However, busy schedules make it difficult to dose very often. One place to start would be 500 mg twice a day. If that suits you, you can increase to 1,000 mg two to three times a day.

If you are sick or stressed your vitamin C need will increase.

If you are dealing with a serious illness like whooping cough, you will want to take as much vitamin C as your body can tolerate. You will know your body has reached tolerance if you begin to get loose stools. At that point, cut back the amount you take per dose.

Dr. Suzanne Humphries has developed an effective vitamin C protocol for whooping cough. She recommends 200-375 mg of vitamin C per kg of body weight each 24 hours for children. For a 50 pound child that would be 4,500 mg to 8,500 mg of vitamin C each 24 hours. Divided into 4 doses it would be approximately 2-4 grams of vitamin C four times a day. For a 150 adult, that would translate into 6-12 grams of vitamin C four times a day!7

The late and renowned Linus Pauling recommended 4-6 grams of vitamin C daily for anyone at risk for heart disease (in addition to 2 grams of lysine.)

You can see that recommended vitamin C amounts for diseases and disease prevention are much higher amounts than you will find in a standard vitamin supplement.

Vitamin C Side Effects

Vitamin C is a water soluble vitamin, which means that it is not stored in the body like vitamin D, a fat soluble vitamin. When you give your body more vitamin C than it can use, it will flush out the rest through the bowel. Too much vitamin C will give you loose stools. Vitamin C can also cause nausea, especially if you take the ascorbic acid form of vitamin C.

Oftentimes though, vitamin C side effects are not caused by vitamin C, but by additives in your vitamin C supplement. Check the label of the vitamin C that you use. You will find fillers, artificial colors, and artificial sweeteners (some of which are excitotoxins.) Headaches, dizziness, digestive upset and heart palpitations from vitamin C supplementation can be related to the additives in a vitamin C supplement.

If you are taking large doses of vitamin C to fight infection, you will be getting higher doses of the additives and artificial ingredients and are at higher risk of side effects from them.

To avoid your risk of side effects, the best vitamin C to take is sodium ascorbate powder. This is less acidic than ascorbic acid and has no additional ingredients.

Be careful not to stop vitamin C supplementation cold turkey or you could get scurvy symptoms.8

Has vitamin C improved your health? Please send us some feedback!

Continue reading to learn more about vitamin C supplementation and find out how our readers have used this supplement to better their health.



Caution: Is There an Excitoxin in Your Supplement?

Posted by Earth Clinic (USA) on 06/22/2011

The below article was originally published in our June, 2011 e-newsletter.


by Daniel P. Kray, Senior Editor
Published June 22, 2011

We like Vitamin C for a lot of things, from prevention to post-infection treatment. That's why we're concerned about the popularity of certain hyped Vitamin C products. A natural cold and flu remedy would be great, but what sort of extra baggage is hitching a ride on these packs of Vitamin C supplements? Turns out, a pair of unnecessary ingredients, aspartic acid (or asparagine) and sucralose, are often tagging along. You may have to look into the fine print of the ingredients list, but you'll be surprised at how often they show up.

L-aspartic acid is one of our non-essential amino acids. The body makes it, so we don't need to get it from our diets. We definitely need it for energy creation, nerve function, and a host of other bodily activities. But like most good things, too much can be bad. In excess, aspartic acid becomes an excitotoxin, revving the neurons and nervous system up so high that nerve damage can be a result. In effect, excitotoxins cause our neurons to die from excitement!

In fact, if the facts behind Aspartame make you uncomfortable, aspartic acid is a large part (40%) of the reason. In our bodies, this artificial sweetener breaks down into phenylalanine, methanol, and aspartic acid. Methanol is just plain toxic, but the overdose of amino acids can likewise do great harm. Sucralose (Splenda) is of course much the same thing as Aspartame-an artificial sweetener. This one mostly passes out of the body without being metabolized, but some 15-20% does not pass out of the body immediately. Since sucralose is an organochloride (an organic chlorine compound), many of us are justifiably concerned about the possibility of introducing free chlorine molecules into our bloodstream and tissues. Makes you nostalgic for good old belly-expanding glucose!

Since the liver can produce aspartic acid whenever bodily levels are low, we never experience true aspartic acid deficiencies, so there is no need to get it through supplements. Easy then, we won't take aspartic acid supplements. That is, unless we don't know it's there in our other supplements! Now, weight lifting supplements often contain aspartic acid along with a medley of the other amino acids, so there is an issue there. However, for the Earth Clinic community we're more concerned about products like Ester-C (the brand) and Emergen-C, both of which add aspartic acid to their Vitamin C supplements. Just check out the Other Ingredients on the fine print on this ingredients list to see for yourself.

Products advertised as energy boosters frequently contain aspartic acid, as do whey powder products. Airborne and Super C Vitamin C products do not seem to use aspartic acid (please do not read that as a general endorsement); however, Airborne and Super C do contain sucralose as a sweetener, as do FRS Healthy Energy products.

Additionally, you're likely to find aspartic acid in these products:

  • Various collagen formulas
  • _____ Liquid Aminos
  • Many potassium-magnesium supplements
  • Many folic acid tablets
  • Many lipoic acid supplements
  • Many Nature's Plus products
  • Some Solgar vitamin supplements
  • Some Nutritech supplements

Now, plenty of foods naturally contain aspartic acid as well, and the body is happy to find it there. It is nature-made, not man-made (unlike sucralose). We don't want to alarm anyone, just let you know what you're potentially putting in your body. Toxic levels of this amino acid are definitely possible, so take a look at your supplement labels and make the best choice for your own health.

The following Earth Clinic reader contributions (and a note from Ted) should help you make the decision that is right for you.

Vitamin C and Excitotoxins

Catherine from Seattle, WA writes: "I was fighting a sinus infection last week after landing in California and went to a Whole Foods to get some Vitamin C. I decided to get Emergen-C to add to water because it had a really tempting fruity flavor. Immediately after taking my first packet (which was delicious), I felt a weird sensation in my head and then I got really edgy (as in bad mood edgy). I read the ingredients on the box and sure enough, the vitamin C used in this brand is Aspartic acid, an excitotoxin. The Emergen-C also contained "natural flavors", aka MSG. I waited 24 hours and tried again to see if I would have the same side effects. Again, within a minute of drinking the packet, I got the same sensation in my head. My question is, are you doing more good or harm to the body when you take this form of vitamin c?!!"

Ted from Bangkok, Thailand replies: "Aspartic acid is a well known excitotoxin and so is monosodium glutamate or MSG. In the long run it's going to destroy the immune system through a neurodegenerative disorder. Once the excitotoxin is destroyed the immune system is down. Now in a pharmaceutical formulation adding this results in the need to take that since you get sicker and so you might feel some relief, the long term is it's going to make a person sicker, which result in greater sales for product with excitotoxins added. Now imagine a child who is a borderline autism, ADHD, these can result in many other neurodegenerative disorders and metabolic acidosis. As for me decades ago I took accidentally soft drinks with aspartame resulting in deafness, but also a permanent partial macular degeneration of the eyes. So the systematic destruction is almost wholesale if given long term use. Luckily Emergen C is not sold in Thailand, although some friends of mine have given me this, I don't take it. I prefer to buy bulk vitamin C and mix them myself. There are other excitotoxins, but aspartic acid, aspartame, monosodium glutamate, and glutamic acid are the most well known...

Therefore most effervescent products sometimes they are not labeled so I ended up calling the factory sometimes. One easy way to measure excitotoxin poisoning is that the urinary pH suddenly become very acid, such as pH 5.5 or lower and even taking more baking soda barely raise the pH long enough to be satisfactory. Such as it can't raise the pH for the entire day. It also takes weeks for the pH to be near normal after taking b complex and baking soda for a week or two. A long term taking of this can also resulted in higher urinary sugar and damaged pancreas, besides damaging the brain. One of the worse advertisement I have seen is Michael J. Fox supporting Diet Pepsi, which contains aspartame, and he himself has Parkinson's disease, which will make such conditions much worse. The remedy is not to take aspartame for Parkinson's disease or to undergo stem cells, since it's not yet legal at the moment and stem cell research has been blocked for at least 8 years. Methylene blue taken at 2 drops at 0.1% concentration might reverse some of the effects of excitotoxins as it is one of my remedies for Parkinson's disease also.

Taking excitotoxins is a long term damage that may lead to degenerative disorders, metabolic acidosis, and lowered immune system. Therefore I would avoid them as best as I can.


Supplements Brought on Rage

Wes from Webster, TX writes: "I'm 220 and work out almost everyday. I started taking 2000mg of vitamin C. Ester C tablets. A few days later I noticed I was very easily enraged. I did this for about 4 weeks and decided it wasn't worth it. I recently started taking and animal pack vitamin package. After taking for several days I noticed the same effect. Read the ingredient 2000 mg Vitamin C. So I stopped taking it. Is there anyway to counteract the aggressiveness. IE some other vitamin."

Christine replies: "This afternoon, I visited your site and noted a comment by a reader who said that Ester C made him enraged. It's not the Vitamin C, it's the aspartic acid in the Ester C product. I verified this with an aspartame activist. Aspartic acid is an excitotoxin, a poison that kills brain cells. Yep, it's the same stuff as in aspartame. All of the studies done on Vitamin C were done with sodium ascorbate, which is a type of chemically buffered Vitamin C. It's best to take it as a powder in water, because you can get gastritis if you take too many pills."

© 2011 Earth Clinic. All Rights Reserved.

Replied by J
Troutdale, Or, Usa

Hey, I don't usually post on things like this, however, I just looked at the ester-c bottle (again, because of the article), there is no aspartic acid in it. In fact, there is nothing harmful in it, which is why we purchased it. I do agree with not taking the emergen-c though. It is also beneficial to note that they don't use the healthiest form of B-12 either. It should be Methelcobalamin and not cyanocobalamin. I have researched my like crazy to figure out the B-12 deficiency cure. It's B-12 paste in the nose a couple times a week. Back to vitamin C, it is EXTREMELY beneficial to take at least 10,000mg a day if you have allergies. They will be gone in weeks. My wife's allergy doctor said she was allergic to herself. Ha ha. She became allergic to probably every fruit or vegetable that had any birch pollen on it. We found a site called doctoryourself. Com, and followed his advice about taking vitamin C, and she is cured after only about 3 weeks. Thank you for the opportunity to comment. Be blessed in your efforts to aid in healthy remedies.

Replied by Mary
Portland, Or

Hi, I looked at the AlacerCorp website FAQ about Emergen-C, and it claims this:

Is aspartic acid the same as aspartame?

  • No, aspartame is a chemically formed sugar substitute that bonds L-phenylalanine to aspartic acid. On the other hand, the aspartic acid which we use in Emergen-C, is an amino acid readily found in foods such as fish, legumes, dairy, whole grains, eggs, meats, nuts, and seeds. We use this pure L-Aspartic Acid which has the same structure as that found in foods.

    I just wanted to throw this out for discussion. The claim above makes it sound like there is nothing to fear from the form of L-Aspartic acid they use, but I'd be interested in hearing more perspectives on this, as I do take Emergen-C. Thanks!

  • Replied by Collo

    Thank you for the advise....

    How to Make Your Own Vitamin C

    Posted by Rebekah (Athens, Ga) on 08/15/2009
    5 out of 5 stars

    YOU CAN MAKE YOUR OWN VITAMIN C POWDER!!!! Do this at home and you will know you are taking a high quality supplement straight from the source. Organic citrus fruits have all the good stuff in their pulp and peel.

    -Cut the peels into thin strips and lay them out on cheesecloth, or use a dehydrator to dry out the peels. After a few days, or when fully dry, put the dried peels into a coffee grinder to make into a powder. One spoonfull is said to be all you need for a whole day. Add the powder to your food or drinks, store in an airtight container.

    You can use organic grapefruit, tangerines, oranges, lemons or limes. :-)

    Replied by Robert
    St. John's, Newfoundland And Labrador, Canada
    1 out of 5 stars


    Be very careful eating the skin of any citrus most especially lemons. Lemons have five very potent/powerful/extremely dangerous pesticides sprayed on them when shipped. Look at the shipping carton for the list. They are so toxic a person should wash their hands after handling them because the poisons are absorable through the human skin.

    It is virtually imposible to remove the shipping poisons from citrus which is naturally oily and disolves the hydrocarbon based poisons deep into the peel.

    How about the new "grease' sprayed on apples-instant prolonged headaches. Be careful, watch everything you eat.

    Taking Vitamin C in Solution

    Posted by Bill (San Fernando, Luzon, Philippines) on 04/19/2010
    5 out of 5 stars

    Taking Vitamin C in Solution

    Hi Everyone...With good reason, Ted has long advised that Vit C in the form of Ascorbic Acid should be converted to its Ascorbate form because this form is more alkaline, more absorbable and uses up less bicarbonates from your body's digestive system.

    This means getting out your mortar and pestal, crunching up your Ascorbic acid tablets then adding water and finally adding the baking soda(sodium bicarbonate) -- let it finish fizzing -- then drinking it down.

    I take Vit C most days with lysine and discovered something useful.

    Today, I just filled a glass full of water and plopped in 4 X 500 gm tablets of ascorbic acid. Then I just added 1/4 to 1/2 teasoon of baking soda to it. It fizzed away and dissolved for about three minutes and then the tablets simply disappeared into solution as Sodium Ascorbate -- a bit like Alka-Seltzer !!

    Then I just scraped off the residue of bubbles off the top of the solution (which contains all the insoluble binder additives like mag stearate, calcium Trihosphate, micro-cellulose, starch etc.) and drank it down.

    So, no tablet crunching necessary really.

    Replied by Tina Marie
    Mobile, Alabama, Us

    To Bill from San Fernando, I'm new to this website and loving it. Just wanted to know if you drink this on an empty stomach or with food. I have horrible reflux that I'm trying the ACV fix for, and I don't take vitamins because it really flares the reflux. Hoping to fix my stomach and trying to get some new ways that may help me to take vitamins.Thanks so much

    Replied by Bill
    San Fernando, Luzon, Philippines

    Hi Tina Marie...I usually take this form of Vitamin C (Ascorbate) at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after meals on its own, but you can also take it with meals without problems. This form of Vitamin C -- sodium ascorbate -- is more alkaline than Ascorbic Acid.

    The best way to take ACV is combined with Baking Soda (Arm and Hammer brand), recipe given here:

    Ted's ACV Acid Reflux Remedy

    It seems that you might also have certain food intolerances -- read Ted's remedy suggestions here:

    Food Intolerance Remedies


    Posted by Francisca (Michelbach-le-bas, Alsace, France) on 10/27/2010

    Which is the best kind of vitamin C one can take? Is it normal one, is it Ester-C or something else? Pills, powder, solvable? And although many books advise quite high doses of Vitamin C there are experts, including my homeopathic doctor who believe that it can help cancer develop. Is this true?

    Replied by Tina
    Princeton, N J

    Hi Francisca, I bought Vitamin C as ascorbic powder from Trader Joe's. I mix one fourth of the powder with equal amount of baking soda in a little water. Once it stops fizzing, I add more water and drink it up. This is according to recipes posted here in EC. I started this three weeks ago. I didn't buy Vitamin C in pill form because of fillers, additives, etc. I'm planning to continue having a glass of this all through winter to keep colds, sinus and flu attacks away!

    Replied by Lis
    Ny, Ny, Usa

    Vitamin C in the form of sodium ascorbate, especially the powdered form free of fillers. But you can also crush tablets with a pill grinder. This form is recommended because its alkaline. I can take a 1/4 teaspoon of mine in one cup of water and got about 500 mg vitamin C (on an empty stomach). I might take this twice a day and much more if I am ill (several grams maximum but divided in hourly doses each day I feel ill).


    Posted by WT (Spartanburg, SC) on 06/01/2008
    5 out of 5 stars

    I used to have angina. Probably for 2-3 years. Never severe but painful nonetheless. What brought about the end of angina was megadoses of Vit C. I had been taking probably 20+ grams/day for stubborn allergies in the spring of the year. I continued to take it at night for dust mite allergies at bedtime instead of medications. I noticed one day in the fall that I hadn't had any chest pains for quite a while. It's been I think two years now since I had any. Vitamin C megadoses, according to Linus Pauling and Matthias Rath, allow the arteries to heal which reverses plaque buildup in all but completely blocked arteries. They also recommend adding L-Lysine and Proline to your regime along with the C.

    Replied by Joyce
    Joelton, Tn
    512 posts

    A study I read about several years ago might help you understand why the high dosage Vit. C got rid of your angina. During Paul Linus' heyday, a nursing home did a study in which they were giving nursing home patients 500 mgm. Vit. C 4 x per day, expecting it to lower their cholesterol readings. Ooops! These patients' cholesterol levels skyrocketed upward, instead of decreasing, scaring them so badly, they halted the study immediately. Logical thinking tells me that the Vit. C was flushing cholesterol from their blood vessels, unless they had also been put on a high cholesterol diet at the same time.

    Asthma, Allergies

    Posted by Elaine (Chicago, IL) on 01/06/2009
    5 out of 5 stars

    I added Baking Soda to my ACV treatment and had many of the side effects others mention on this site. Baking Soda lowers Vitamin C levels and this can lead to symptoms of scurvy. I had to do a lot of research to find this out. I woke up with a purple spot/bruise on my leg and that convinced me, as I had not bumped into anything to bruise myself. The purple bruise looking spot is a sign of scurvy. Luckily, it was recommened to me to take Vitamin C for Constipation. I was sooo sick (my asthma was out of control) last night and the night before. I did not know that Vitamin C actually helps Astmatics.

    I took 6 mgs of Vitamin C last night in error. I picked up the wrong size of measuring spoon!!..luckily! I had been up the prior two nights coughing up mucus, but last night I slept through the night. I couldn't figure it out since I needed to take bendryl the other nights just to not choke on the mucus. It appears that the 6 mg of Vitamin C did it's job to replenish my Vitamin C and to help with my asthma.

    I woke up with the usual morning junk to cough up and spit out. I took 1000 mg of vitamin C and it stopped this problem dead in it's tracks. People need to read about what vitamin C does, especially for people with Asthma and food allergies. Also, the baking soda should NOT be recommended on this site.

    It depletes the Vitamin C. If someone is already low in Vitamin C it can cause Survy Symptoms as it did in me.

    I love this site, but I think promoting Baking Soda that depletes Vitamin C is wrong. Also, I love Apple Cider Vinegar and it is promoted her as the top natural relief, but I never hear any talk of vitamin C. It works wonders for Asthma, Hay fever and a load of Respiratory illnesses and other illnesses.

    Replied by Ron
    Emporia, Kansas

    Hi Elaine,

    I believe you meant 6 grams (g) of vitamin C, not milligrams (mg.)...6 grams would be 6,000 mg.. Linus Pauling took about 10 grams a day.

    That is very interesting that Vitamin C cleared up your mucous enough to sleep through the night. I occasionally have a stuffy nose when sleep. I'll try this out and take 6 grams and let you know if it works for me. I currently take 3,000 mg a day.

    Replied by Ron
    Emporia, Kansas

    Hi Elaine,

    This is the follow up to my last post. I tried 3 grams of vitamin C powder before bed 2 nights ago and my sinuses were very clear for 6 1/2 hours. Last night I tried 6 grams before bed with the same results...6 grams was a little much for me in one dose. Thanks for the tip.

    Replied by Kelly

    In reply to Elaine's claim that baking soda lowers vitamin C, with all due respect, that's simply not true.

    According to experiments, "In two normal young adults the rate of urinary excretion of ascorbic acid, during controlled conditions of vitamin C [ascorbic acid] depletion and saturation, was consistently lower during periods of administration of NaHCO3 to produce an alkaline urine, than when NH4C1 was given to produce an acid urine."

    NaHCO3 is sodium bicarbonate, or baking soda. Vitamin C excretion was LOWER when baking soda was given, not higher as Elaine concluded from the fact that she had some bruising.

    Baking soda helps one retain vitamin C.

    Bacterial Vaginosis

    Posted by Jeff (Pawtucket, Ri) on 12/24/2009
    5 out of 5 stars

    Vitamin C cured my wifes' bacterial vaginosis. She used 250mg of ascorbic acid by breaking off 1/4 of a 1000mg caplet and using it as a suppository. Within one day the odor was gone. She plans on continuing this for a week or so to make sure it's gone.

    Replied by Friend
    Toronto, Ontario

    I tried this, too, and it cleared up the odor and discharge by the next morning. Been struggling with BV for several months now. Feels like a miracle.

    And to any women reading this... I tried hydrogen peroxide, acidophilus, folic acid etc to no avail.

    Truly, I stuck half a 1000mg vitamin c tablet in my vagina and by the next day the classic bv odor and sticky discharge was gone. (rinsed the vitamin in hot water first to get off any lubricating coating).

    If you've tried everything else, try this.

    Good luck!

    Replied by Hotlava
    Seattle, WA

    hey, make sure you don't use powdered ascorbic acid for this! Use a tablet, which is buffered. otherwise, that acid will burn delicate tissue.


    Posted by Francisca (Michelbach-le-bas, Alsace, France) on 04/26/2011

    How do I buffer Vitamin C powder? In a book I am reading right now Linus Pauling says that he used to buffer his Vitamin C by dissolving it in orange juice but how does it work given the fact that orange juice is also an acid? Or else he added bicarbonate of soda but he doesn't say how much. Right now I am taking 2g powder and 4g in tablets. I don't want to take more tablets because of the fillings as I am afraid that if you take many a day they will do you more harm than good. Also, in the book he says that he used to take 12g in the morning but I ask myself whether he took them in many glasses of water as I find 2g in a glass of water already quite strong.

    Replied by Bill
    San Fernando, San Fernando, Philippines

    Hi Francisca... It's fairly easy to understand buffering which is simply the addition of an alkali or base(like sodium bicarbonate, baking soda) to orange juice -- which consists mainly citric acid and ascorbic acid and which tastes sour.

    The rudimentary rule and equation for buffering is here:

    Acid plus Base = Salt plus Water

    Thus the citric and ascorbic acids are converted to their alkaline salts -- citrates and ascorbates -- which do not taste sour. Because these acids are converted to salts this does not erode your teeth and it tastes less sour when you drink it.

    Just add baking soda to the fresh orange juice until the fizzing stops and then drink it -- very similar to the process of adding baking soda to ascorbic acid to just create ascorbates. You will be drinking the citrates and ascorbates in solution and not their acid forms which is far kinder on your digestive system. This method also causes less stomach upset and less diarrhia because its not so acid. It's also been my experience that your intestines can absorb far more ascorbates than ascorbic acid in your intestines for this reason.

    This buffering process is exactly the same when you add sufficient sodium bicarbonate to lemon or lime juice(Ted's Alkalizing Remedy). Same result -- alkaline salts which are more easily absorbed in the intestines.

    You should also be able to add extra ascorbic acid to the orange juice then just buffer it all as normal with the sodium bicarbonate. Quite safe.

    Chronic Allergies

    Posted by Betty (Wheeling, WV) on 07/23/2006
    5 out of 5 stars

    I started taking increased doses of Vitamin C a number of years ago at my doctor's recommendation for a tendency to bruise easily. One of the other unexpected benefits is that my sinuses cleared up. I used to wake up sneezing and would continue throughout the morning, sometimes through the entire day, year round. After experimenting with different dosages, I am now on a maintenance level of 2000 mg of Vitamin C daily and this keeps my allergies under control usually 50-51 weeks out of the year. Occasionally, I may have a flare-up and need something else. When that happens, I stir 1 teaspoon of ground Turmeric into an 8 oz. glass of water and drink it. Within 15 minutes, I am breathing freely once again and no more sneezing!

    Citric Acid

    Posted by Dana (Bend, Oregon, Usa) on 11/30/2011

    Is food grade Citric Acid powder a viable type of vitamin C supplement? I bought this thinking it was a healthy alternative to tablets, capsules and then realized that maybe ascobic acid was really what I wanted. Is there any benefits from citric acid or a way to take it for supplementation?

    Replied by Ricky
    Seattle, Wa

    You can use this in recipes to add a bit of tang. It is the other ingredient used with mms. I would not use it as a supplement. It is great for adding high notes to soups or meat dishes where tomatoes are used or in sauces.


    Posted by Lizzi (London, Uk) on 12/19/2010
    5 out of 5 stars

    My partner woke up with a very heavy cold and so we decided, following an article we had read to take 6 grams of vit c every 20 mins until he hit near diararea. At that point you back off and just take around 20 grams every 3 hours. It totally worked. It was incredable to see. There he was sneezing and coughing, runny nose and then it all stopped. Like turning off a tap. But make sure you keep with it for at least another 3 days. Look up cold on the vit c website for more info. I also felt one coming on and did the same thing. No cold.

    Posted by Ron (Emporia, Kansas) on 12/24/2009
    5 out of 5 stars

    I too have taken Vitamin C for colds and flu for over 20 years.

    I had a friend of mine who got a full body flu...he said he ached from head to toe...he was shivering and sweating a lot and looked very pale. I suggested that Vitamin C might take 500mg every hour (if wake up a night = take another 500mg). He took the C with a little snack, like a cracker or small slice of bread...something to buffer his stomach from the acid. Within 24 hours all his symptoms were gone and didn't come back.

    When I first notice symptoms of a cold coming on (slightly swollen throat or my nose starting to drip or pressure in head or just a feeling some kind of bacteria has gotten into the body), I immediately start the following:

    If the symptoms are mild, I will take 500 to 1000mg Vitamin C powder (can also use capsules or tabs) every 2 hours. I sometimes add it to my Apple Cider Vinegar and Honey tea, or just with water or just before a meal...but I never take the C on an empty stomach.

    If the symptoms are bad, I will take 500 to 1000mg C every hour.

    What happens in the body is that when a person has a cold or flu, they tend to have to urinate more. When sick the body uses up Vitamin C very fast. Even if you take 5000mg or more in one shot, within 2 hours all of it will be gone through the urine. That's why it is so important to take it in smaller doses every hour or two.

    I discovered this approach from Adelle Davis in her book Let's Get was published in the 1960s. I have been able to kill all cold and flu symptoms within about 24 hours for over the last 20 years...I have not had a full blown cold or flu since. The Keys are (1) start early when first get symptoms and (2) take the Vitamin C every hour or two until better.

    Posted by Lisa (Liverpool, New York USA ) on 10/21/2008
    5 out of 5 stars

    Colds and Allergies

    My children usually get sick at the beginning of the spring and the beginning of fall... most likely allergies. They also usually get whatever sickness is going around school. For the last year, I've been successfully giving my 6 and 8 year olds 500 mgs of vitamin c under the recommendation from the Linus Pauling Foundation. They love the chewables (ascorbic acid). They havent gotten sick AT ALL in that time. Meanwhile, my 13 year old has gotten broncitis and pneumonia who refuses to take the vitamin c. I've been trying to get her to take the vitamin c but she is not big into the taste of the chewables and doesn't like taking pills. Everytime she gets sick, I try to reason with her that the other two are not getting sick anymore, and in fact, NONE of us are, so why is she the only one in our house getting sick?? It used to go from one of us to the next and the next like a domino effect. Now, it's just her.( My husband and I take 2000 mg of Vitamin C per day, also recommeded by the Linus Pauling Institute)

    Dream Inducer

    Posted by Amy (Kingston, ON, Canada ) on 01/05/2009
    5 out of 5 stars

    Dream Inducer: I stumbled upon this years ago when I was taking as much as possible to battle a nasty cold bug, but chewable vitamin C tablets (500mg) right before bed produce vivid dreams. I occasionally have some just before bed for fun, and it never fails.

    Food Poisoning

    Posted by Darnell (Granite City) on 05/06/2007
    5 out of 5 stars

    I always use 4000 mg of vit C, if I get food poisoning. It has worked well in the past.