What's The Deal With Vitamin C?
The original inspiration for this article series on immunity came from a trip to GNC. I went to GNC in Peoria after work (for those of you unfamiliar, I work for the Air Force in Peoria during the week when my lovely wife Dr. Anna is working in the office). I went into GNC to pick up some krill oil and vitamin D and noticed there was a huge sale on Vitamin C and the shelves were virtually empty. Surely, people were stocking up on vitamin C because of the new “surge” of coronavirus, and GNC was merely capitalizing on the news by offering discounts on vitamin C. After all, who can blame GNC for running the sale? Everyone knows that taking Vitamin C reduces your likelihood of getting sick right? Surely it’s something we should be supplementing daily right?
Not so fast.
The truth is that when studied in a randomized and non randomized manner, the result lacks any kind of consistency in regards to rate of sickness in populations consuming vitamin C. Some studies show a decrease in rates of sickness while most others show that there is no difference in the likelihood of getting sick in populations taking vitamin C supplements compared to a population who is not consuming vitamin C.
What about if you’re already sick? Should you take vitamin C to kick the cold or flu faster? The answer, as usual, is “maybe.” An independent review of 26 different studies found that people who took vitamin C while ill were sick for a whopping half-a-day less than those not taking vitamin C while ill. Yep…you read that correctly. A mere half day.
So, where do we go from here?
Vitamin C is one of those essential vitamins that I recommend prioritizing in our diet. Meaning, I want you to get it from your food. The reality is that studies that have been done for decades have shown very little additional effects from supplementing it. It is very easy to get enough vitamin C in your diet if you’re eating fruits, vegetables, and lean meats. Prioritize getting vitamin C from the food you eat, not the bottle in your pantry.
Do you enjoy this type of information we give out in newsletters? If so, stay tuned. We will be bringing back our “Be Well Primal Health” workshop program. Just like the rest of the world, we will be offering workshops in the future from the comfort of your home via zoom! To coincide with our workshops we will be providing one on one in office or zoom health guidance programs to aid you in your health journey. Whether your goals revolved around fitness, weight loss, or lowering risk of chronic disease, we want to help you along your journey!