What are the vitamin C benefits on our health? How to maximize its health benefits and what are the precautions? Is supplementation required and how to choose an optimal supplement? Find the answers here.
The other name of vitamin C is Ascorbic acid. It is a water-soluble vitamin that performs many vital functions in maintaining optimal health of our body.
Benefits of Vitamin C
There are numerous therapeutic vitamin C benefits. Firstly, it is a powerful antioxidant. Antioxidants are those substances that neutralize the free radicals that cause cellular damage, disease and premature aging if left unchecked in our body.
Besides that, vitamin C or ascorbic acid also plays a major role in collagen production. Collagen is a structural protein that is found in our connective tissues (such as skin). Aging symptoms such as sagging skin and wrinkles occur due to the breakage of collagen in our skin.
Among the other Vitamin C benefits is that it also aids wounds to heal faster.
We hear a lot about the ability of vitamin C to prevent flu and colds. Although there is a lack of strong evidence supporting this claim, there are studies showing that vitamin C can reduce the severity and the duration of a cold (upon occurrence).
This might be due to its exceptional ability of strengthening our immune system, which is particularly beneficial and important for the elderly.
Further studies on the vitamin C benefits have shown its role in the protection of artery linings. Vitamin C improves their resistance towards injuries that cause plaque formation. Thus, vitamin C provides excellent protection against coronary heart diseases, which are the number 1 killer in the Western countries.
Vitamin C is also known to prevent cataract formation. In this way, it helps to prevent the deterioration of vision.
Vitamin C Precautions
Those people who are suffering from kidney stones should avoid taking mega doses of vitamin C as it worsens the condition. Health experts classify 1000 mg or more of vitamin C as its mega dose.
The recommended daily allowance (RDA) of vitamin C is currently set at 60 mg.
Vitamin C is generally considered very safe as our body can easily excrete any excess of this vitamin through urine.
Our Opinion on Vitamin C Supplementation
We believe that vitamin C is an excellent nutrient to add to your daily supplements regimen, especially if your regular diet lacks in fresh fruits and vegetables.
In fact, the use of supplements for maintaining optimal intake of nutrients has become more important than ever because the nutritional value of vegetables and fruits has declined significantly due to the application of modern farming practices.
Tips on Choosing an Optimal Vitamin C Supplement
1) There may be a need of taking higher vitamin C doses (500 mg or more) to treat specific health conditions. However, for maintaining optimal health, our opinion is that even lower levels of vitamin C are acceptable, as we also get a good amount of vitamin C from regular food sources.
An intake of around 20 to 60 mg of vitamin C through supplements can provide all the vitamin C benefits on health.
2) Vitamin C works in synergy with vitamin E (and other antioxidants) by recycling it. It means that those individuals having higher vitamin C levels also have greater levels of vitamin E circulating in their body. Thus, vitamin C helps to enhance and prolong the effects of other antioxidants in the body.
Therefore, vitamin C should be a part of your supplemental intake in the form of a comprehensive and scientifically balanced formula, rather than in the form of a standalone vitamin C product.
3) The nutritional supplements industry in the United States is largely unregulated. In studies conducted by both government and private agencies, it has been found out that consumers have only a 20% chance of buying a product that actually contains the ingredients in amounts specified on the product labels.
Therefore, to ensure that you get the exact amount of vitamins and that they are not contaminated by fillers and additives (such as starch, sugar, silica (sand!), etc.), you should purchase only from pharmaceutical GMP compliant facilities. These are the highest standards in the manufacturing of nutritional supplements.
A Comprehensive Product
One of the companies that manufactures supplements in accordance with pharmaceutical GMP compliance guidelines is Xtend-Life natural products of New Zealand. It is based in New Zealand which has regulatory standards for manufacturing of nutritional supplements that far exceed the US FDA requirements.
Total Balance is the flagship product of Xtend-Life. It contains vitamin C and vitamin E, plus a wide spectrum of other minerals, vitamins, amino acids, herbal extracts, enzymes and speciality nutrients.
We have been personally taking Total Balance since the last few years and have achieved excellent health benefits.
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