For years, Vitamin C has been studied for its immunity properties and the benefits are seemingly endless. During the current pandemic, consumers everywhere have been looking for ways to boost their immune system and help their bodies achieve optimal health in a time when so much is uncertain. Vitamin C is currently used in the hospital as a complementary treatment to conventional medications.
What is an Antioxidant?
Every day we are exposed to harmful molecules called “free radicals” through our environment and also due to other chemical processes happening in our bodies. These molecules have the ability to alter and damage cell DNA, most affected being lipids, proteins and nucleic acids. Some of the environmental sources of free radicals include: smoking, radiation, environmental pollutants, pesticides and industrial chemicals. Extensive exposure to those molecules can cause disease over time, most notably, cancer. Antioxidants help to balance the effects of free radicals and prevent the complications that come with an overload of oxidative stress these free radicals cause the body. While there are many different types of antioxidants, one of the most common and powerful is Vitamin C.
Fun Fact: Glutathione is also an antioxidant!
The Role of Vitamin C
Vitamin C has been studied extensively for its role as an antioxidant in the treatment of breast cancer and as a preventative in all cancers. Vitamin C is also being proven to enhance the immune response and accelerate the detoxification of liver enzymes (Lobo, 2010). Other disease processes that have used Vitamin C in high doses include: diabetes, common colds, glaucoma, heart disease and strokes. In the case of boosting the immune system it is thought that Vitamin C is helpful as an antioxidant which also enhances the production of T-cells, one of the main cells in our immune system (Chambial, 2013).
Vitamin C vs. COVID19
Though COVID19 seemingly has been raging through our community for a while, scientifically it is still new and studies are being conducted as we speak. There are a few preliminary studies that show high dose Vitamin C therapy not only decreases the mortality of COVID19 sufferers but also helps to reduce the amount of oxygen support that hospitalized patients require. There are also studies being conducted about the Myer’s Cocktail, which contains a fairly high dose of Vitamin C, and its uses in helping patients who are in recovery from COVID19 but still have lingering symptoms.
Overall, Vitamin C is the backbone of the supplemental IV Therapy we know today and the benefits speak for themselves. Here at 18TH&MAIN, many of our treatments include Vitamin C, we even have an immune system boosting infusion (Protect & Strengthen) that includes Vitamin C and Zinc. Whether you’re combating a virus or treating a specific disease, Vitamin C is vital for our bodies and overall wellness.
Chambial, S., Dwivedi, S., Shukla, K. K., John, P. J., & Sharma, P. (2013). Vitamin C in disease prevention and cure: an overview. Indian journal of clinical biochemistry : IJCB, 28(4), 314–328. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12291-013-0375-3
Lobo, V., Patil, A., Phatak, A., & Chandra, N. (2010). Free radicals, antioxidants and functional foods: Impact on human health. Pharmacognosy reviews, 4(8), 118–126. https://doi.org/10.4103/0973-7847.70902