Practical Notes on Vitamin C Therapy
Vitamin C Therapy
Notes On Orthomolecular (Megavitamin) Use of Vitamin C
Vitamin C (ascorbate, ascorbic acid) has varying activity in the body at varying levels of intake. At low levels of consumption, vitamin C is like a trace nutrient: you need very little of it to stay alive, but without any at all you die. Even a few milligrams a day will suffice to preserve life. At moderate levels of consumption, say 500 to 1,500 mg per day for an adult, the vitamin works to build health in a positive sense. Statistically, fewer colds will be reported; incidence, severity and duration of influenza will be less. (Stone, The Healing Factor, 1972 and Pauling, Vitamin C, the Common Cold and the Flu, 1976). But it is at high levels, say 8,000 to 40,000 mg per day for an adult, that we begin to obtain therapeutic properties for the vitamin.
At the proper (high)
level, vitamin C has antihistamine, antitoxin, antibiotic, and antiviral
pharmacological effects of a vitamin at high concentration do not disqualify
our continuing to call it, and think of it, as a vitamin. Money still buys
things even if you have a lot of it; its nature has not changed but its power
has. If it takes 50 gallons of gas to drive from
and DURATION are the keys to effective orthomolecular use of vitamin C. So many people hold a
philosophical viewpoint such as "I shouldn't have to take so much of a
vitamin." That's certainly true; you do not have to. This is
The safety of vitamin
C is extraordinary.
There is not one case of vitamin C toxicity anywhere in the world's medical
literature. There is not one case of vitamin C-caused kidney stone ever
proven, to the best of my knowledge. Vitamin C has been used to prevent and
cure the formation of kidney stones since William J. McCormick, M.D. used it
in 1946 (Medical Record 159:7, p 410-413). 10,000 mg of ascorbic acid
per day does not significantly increase urinary excretion of calcium (Linus
Pauling Institute Newsletter "Effect of High Intake of Ascorbic Acid
on Excretion of Calcium" by Dr. C. Tsao, 2:3, 1983). Daily doses of over
120,000 mg have been used with safety by medical doctors, and guinea pigs
have been given the human daily dose equivalent of 500,000 mg without harm.
The major side effect of vitamin C overload is an unmistakable
5-times-an-hour diarrhea. This indicates absolute saturation, and the daily
dose is then dropped to the highest amount that will not bring about
diarrhea. That is a THERAPEUTIC level. Robert Cathcart, M.D. of
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