What You Need to Know About Vitamin C

Are You Getting Enough Vitamin C?

Do you eat the recommended five to nine servings of fruits and veggies every day? A landmark study (Journal of American College Nutrition, 2004) analyzed the nutritional content of 43 different fruits and vegetables in 1950 and 1999. They found the vitamin C content had badly declined. Other nutrients – such as protein, calcium, phosphorous, iron and vitamin B2 – also declined.

This means that the fruits and veggies we are eating today contain about 30% less vitamin C than just 50 years prior.

What Are the Benefits of Vitamin C?

Vitamin C supports the healthy biosynthesis of collagen and carnitine and helps form neurotransmitters. Vitamin C acts as a free radical scavenger and antioxidant in addition to other important health benefits.

Synthetic Vitamin C

Many consumers don’t realize that many vitamin C products on the market today contain synthetically created ascorbic acid or variations, such as calcium ascorbate, magnesium ascorbate, or potassium ascorbate. Despite marketing claims, these laboratory-produced powders are not natural vitamin C. They are chemically synthesized molecules manufactured in a test tube and may be made from genetically modified corn sugar. These synthetic molecules mimic only one component of the life-supporting nutrient complexes found in genuine natural vitamin C.

Natural vs. Synthetic Vitamin C

Many animals can produce vitamin C in their bodies and do not need to obtain it directly from food. However, humans cannot produce vitamin C and must get it from their diet.

Ascorbic acid is the chemical name for vitamin C. Vitamin C exists primarily in two forms: L-ascorbic acid and D-ascorbic acid. The L form can come from either a natural source (fruits, vegetables, herbs) or from synthetic forms (made in a test-tube). The D form does not exist in nature and is not typically used in supplements because it does not have the vitamin C content that the L form has.

Be sure you are getting the “preferred” vitamin C form for the body in the L form that is found in whole nutrient sources.

Natural Vitamin C: The only way to go!

The health benefits associated with vitamin C are derived from whole-nutrient sources, not in isolated, synthesized molecules. In short, test-tube vitamin C simply cannot re-create the magnificence of a full spectrum vitamin C complex.

If you choose to incorporate a vitamin C supplement into your diet, be sure to choose a natural, full-spectrum product that can offer you the greatest health benefits.