Vitamin C and Optimal Immunity

By Mitchell Gaj, DC

It is important to realize that vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that the body needs and must be obtained outside the body. As we age, we tend to have lower levels of vitamin C which can lead to impaired immune function. A deficiency in vitamin C has been associated with colds which can lead to pneumonia and other respiratory diseases. A deficiency can make us more vulnerable to infections. Reasons for a deficiency in vitamin C include aging, stress, and various disease states including diabetes, gastritis, cancer, arthritis, pneumonia and pancreatitis.

One of the most important functions of vitamin C is to support and energize the immune system. Studies have shown that the amount of vitamin C can not only reduce the duration and severity of the common cold, but it can reduce the incidence of developing a cold. Because all common cold studies do not produce consistent results, other nutrients may be needed to fight the common cold. The use of zinc lozenges when the cold first appears is one suggestion to follow.

Studies have shown that vitamin C can reduce the duration of colds from 5-21%. Studies using 1,000 mg or more per day have shown the incidence of a cold being developed being reduced by 50%. There is growing support for the use of vitamin C in the areas of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, anemia, periodontal disease, and osteoporosis.

For more information on this subject, please read “The Link Between Vitamin C and Optimal Immunity” by Chad Robertson in the 11/15 issue of Life Extension Magazine, pp. 56-64.

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