All Vitamin C/Common Cold Studies Conducted Over The Past 60 Years Are Flawed

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A recent scientific review, which claims vitamin C pills are ineffective against the common cold, is flawed and appears timed to coincide with debates on the safety and effectiveness of dietary supplements.

The recent, widely circulated news report, that vitamin C supplements are ineffective against the common cold, emanated from a report first published in October of 2004 [Cochrane Database System Review Oct. 18, 2004] and its republication in the Public Library of Science journal [PLOS June 2005] appears to have been timed to coincide with CODEX deliberations in Rome over safe dosage of vitamins and minerals, says health journalist Bill Sardi.

“All of the 55 studies that investigators reviewed, published over the past 60 years, were flawed,” says Sardi, “because they did not take into consideration the dynamic flow of vitamin C in the human body.” Vitamin C, as a water-soluble nutrient, is rapidly excreted from the body and needs replenishment throughout the day.

Most animals continuously produce their own vitamin C and don’t get colds. For example, a goat, about the same weight as a human, incessantly produces vitamin C, about 13,000 milligrams in 24 hours. None of the 55 studies reviewed in the PLOS report utilized repeated dosing. Humans have genes to produce enzymes that would convert blood sugar to vitamin C, but due to a genetic mutation, humans no longer synthesize vitamin C and must totally rely upon their diet for this essential nutrient.

A recent study, unmentioned in the PLOS journal report, reveals that three times greater vitamin C concentration can be achieved in the blood circulation than previously thought possible through oral dosing. [Annals Internal Medicine 2004 140:533-7, 2004]. The notion that vitamin pills only produce “expensive urine” should now be dismissed since blood concentrations can be achieved that would significantly lower mortality rates from cardiovascular disease, as well as reduce the incidence of allergy, aneurysms, gall stones, arterial disease, leg blood clots, cataracts, strokes and other maladies.

For more authoritative information about the potential health benefits of vitamin C, refer to the e-book Ascorbate: The Science of Vitamin C, by Steve Hickey and Hilary Roberts at

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William Sardi
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