Overcoming Aids, Infections, Heart Disease: Vitamin C Is Key
Vitamin C may be a life-saver, wrote Jane Feinmann in a recent article in The Independent, one of the major papers in the UK.
According to the article, in June 1949 when polio was at its peak. Dr Frederick Klenner, a clinical researcher from Reidsville, North Carolina, reported that a massive intravenous dose of Vitamin C - up to 20,000mg daily for three days (today's recommended daily allowance is 60mg) - had cured 60 of his patients. The findings were published in a medical journal, yet there was virtually no interest.
Dr Thomas Levy, a US cardiologist and author of a new book "Vitamin C, Infectious Diseases, and Toxins: Curing the Incurable", argues that the medical profession has routinely ignored research showing that high doses of Vitamin C can combat bacteria, toxins and severe viral infections including avian flu, SARS, hepatitis and herpes."Vitamin C is possibly the best-researched substance in the world. There are more than 24,000 papers and articles on the authoritative clinical website, Medline. Yet virtually the all the evidence has been dismissed."Levy even claims that Aids can be controlled if a high enough dosage of Vitamin C is maintained.
Levy says he was gripped by a range of emotions when he came across Klenner's work and other studies that replicated it. "To know that polio had been easily cured yet so many people continued to die, or survived to be permanently crippled by it, was difficult to accept."
It was Dr Robert Cathcart who pioneered the use of vitamin C in Acquired Immune Deficiency and who published a paper discussing his therapeutic protocol in August 1984. Again, the medical profession remained strangely mute.
Is there a conspiracy of silence? Have we been misled into thinking that pharmaceutical drugs are the only answer to disease and are millions of people dying needlessly?
Official research - deeply flawed according to Hickey and Roberts - decrees that we "need" a measly 60 milligrams of the substance that animals manufacture in gram quantities in their livers but humans have lost the ability to synthesize.
Orthomolecular doctors agree that in the case of vitamin C, small is not necessarily beautiful. According to a recent newsletter, immune deficency and infective diseases are not the only conditions that can be treated by copious quantities of this powerhouse vitamin. Two-time Nobel Prize winner Dr. Linus Pauling stated the rate of heart disease would be reduced by 80 per cent if adults in the US supplemented with 2,000 to 3,000 mg of vitamin C each day...
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Vitamin C may be a life-saver
Mega-doses of Vitamin C can counter avian flu, hepatitis and herpes, and can even control the advance of Aids
By Jane Feinmann (The Independent)
12 April 2005
Imagine that a deadly virus is sweeping the world, killing and maiming hundreds of thousands of children. Nothing seems able to stop it - until a doctor stands up at the American Medical Association and reports on 60 cases involving severely infected children, all of whom have been cured. Yet his work, subsequently reported in a peer-review journal, is ignored, leaving the virus to wreak havoc for decades.
This isn't a docudrama about some futuristic plague - it's a true story about what happened in June 1949 when polio was at its peak. Dr Frederick Klenner, a clinical researcher from Reidsville, North Carolina, reported that a massive intravenous dose of Vitamin C - up to 20,000mg daily for three days (today's recommended daily allowance is 60mg) - had cured 60 of his patients. The findings were published in a medical journal, yet there was virtually no interest. Apart from a couple of minor trials, no attempt was made to find out if they had any scientific substance.
Relating this curious incident in a new book, Vitamin C, Infectious Diseases & Toxins: Curing the Incurable, Dr Thomas Levy, a US cardiologist, admits to being gripped by a range of emotions when he came across Klenner's work and other studies that replicated it. "To know that polio had been easily cured yet so many people continued to die, or survived to be permanently crippled by it, was difficult to accept."
Levy argues that the medical profession has routinely ignored research showing that high doses of Vitamin C can combat bacteria, toxins and severe viral infections including avian flu, SARS, hepatitis and herpes. And this is not a case of doctors sniffing at anecdotal evidence from a handful of enthusiasts. "Vitamin C is possibly the best-researched substance in the world. There are more than 24,000 papers and articles on the authoritative clinical website, Medline. Yet virtually the all the evidence has been dismissed." Levy even claims that Aids can be controlled if a high enough dosage of Vitamin C is maintained.
This is not the first time doctors have had their cages rattled over the benefits of Vitamin C. The controversy has been simmering since 1753, when just a couple of sucks of a lime were shown to prevent scurvy. In the 1950s the chemist Linus Pauling, a double Nobel prize winner, promoted the use of mega-doses of Vitamin C, but his research was rubbished by clinicians.
Recently, the anti-Vitamin C sentiment has grown. It has been blamed for causing the formation of kidney stones, and a study published in the journal Science in 2001 found that even 200mg doses of Vitamin C "facilitated the production of DNA-damaging agents associated with a variety of cancers". This finding was widely interpreted as proving that Vitamin C causes cancer.
Britain's Food Standards Agency recommends taking a maximum of 1,000mg of Vitamin C a day. But a directive going through the European Parliament aims to reduce this to less than 100mg in an attempt to harmonise dosages across the Continent. Despite being dubbed "illegal" by the advocate general of the European Court of Justice last week, the directive could still be passed.
The controversy has not put off consumers, many of whom take Vitamin C to ward off colds. The 1,000 mg capsule is the most popular single vitamin in Britain, with the 500mg version second.
Some people argue that we can get sufficient Vitamin C from a diet rich in fruit and vegetables, but Levy disagrees. The problem, he says, is that a genetic design fault makes us unable to synthesise our own Vitamin C. Levy claims that while recommended daily allowances of 60mg are enough to prevent the development of scurvy in otherwise healthy people, much higher levels are required to maintain health when an infection strikes. At such times, the body begins to "metabolise unusually large amounts of vitamin C, keeping stores so depleted that the recommended daily allowance will not even prevent many of the symptoms of scurvy from developing".
Levy claims that the reason why most animals stay healthy throughout their lives, while humans spend years coping with one or more chronic diseases, is that animals make their own Vitamin C. The wild goat, for instance, makes around 13,000mg a day, rising to 100,000mg when faced with life-threatening infectious or toxic stress, according to a 1961 study published in the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences.
So, is Levy right? Should everyone be taking mega-doses every day and having intravenous infusions when they fall ill? Possibly.
Dr Rodney Adeniyi-Jones regularly gives 20,000mg doses to people with arterial disease and as part of a flu treatment protocol, describing its effects as "beneficial... but not miraculous". And Professor George Lewith of the Centre for Complementary and Integrated Medicine says that while Vitamin C is not a panacea, it does have clinical benefits depending on the dosage. "There may be doses that are therapeutic, while another dose may be damaging for the same condition. It is not a dose-response curve as with pharmaceuticals, and we need to be cautious until this is better understood."
But he also warns that: "Many of the [Vitamin C] trials have been badly done and what evidence exists is mixed. Both those in favour and against high doses frequently misinterpret the data."
Levy may well be seen to have an axe to grind, yet the evidence seems to support his view that apart from causing diarrhoea, mega-doses of Vitamin C are not toxic. He says that a series of studies published in leading journals have shown that, far from causing cancer, Vitamin C is a safe supplement for chronic cancer patients. Further large studies suggest that supplements do not put a normal person at greater risk of developing kidney stones.
According to Levy, the problem is not that people might take too much, but that they won't take enough - and thus won't get the desired effects. "There's a popular medical view that taking Vitamin C just makes expensive urine. Some of it is lost in urine, but the more you consume, the more stays in your body."
With a new book on the way claiming that Vitamin C deficiency is also a primary cause of cardiovascular disease, Levy cannot be accused of underselling his case. Nor can he overcome the fact that proper clinical trials are still desperately needed. Considering its overall safety, there appears to be no good reason why anyone with a chronic or acute health problem should not try, at the very least, a couple of week's regime of two or three 1,000mg tablets of Vitamin C a day.
Need to Know: So how much should you take?
* For a cold
Three 1,000mg doses a day, according to the campaign group Consumers for Health Choice.
* For flu
Although it's more serious, the viral load is similar, according to research, and taking up to 20,000mg a day could be beneficial.
* For shingles
Research has shown that this painful post-viral condition can be pretty well cured by an injection of 3,000mg of vitamin C. Taking four 1,000mg tablets orally for three days could be worthwhile as well.
* For a hangover
Taking 1,000mg daily in the week before a booze-up reduces stress on the liver. If you're drunk and want to look sober, a large dose of vitamin C will prevent drunken behaviour, according to a 1986 study, "Alcohol and Alcoholism".
* To maintain your health
A 1,000mg daily dose is regarded as safe by the Food Standards Agency, and adequate to keep sufficient vitamin C in the plasma and tissues. "We believe this is absolutely safe and definitely beneficial to people's health," says Sue Croft of Consumers for Health Choice.
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Vitamin C Saves Lives
(Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, April 22, 2005)
Millions die each year from heart disease and stroke, and the overwhelming evidence is that vitamin C supplementation would save many lives.
Two-time Nobel Prize winner Dr. Linus Pauling estimated that the rate of heart disease would be reduced by 80 per cent if adults in the US supplemented with 2,000 to 3,000 mg of vitamin C each day. According to Dr. Pauling, "Since vitamin C deficiency is the common cause of human heart disease, vitamin C supplementation is the universal treatment for this disease." Heart disease is the number one killer in the US. For those with existing heart disease Dr. Pauling said that blockage of heart arteries could actually be reversed by supplementing with 6,000 of vitamin C and 6,000 of lysine (a common amino acid) taken in divided doses throughout the day. Vitamin C supplementation both lowers serum cholesterol levels and repairs lesions of arterial walls. 1998 Nobel Prize winner Dr. Louis J. Ignarro found that supplementing with vitamin C and vitamin E significantly reduces the risk of developing arteriosclerosis.
A study examined vitamin E and vitamin C supplement use in relation to mortality risk in 11,178 persons aged 67-105 who participated in the Established Populations for Epidemiologic Studies of the Elderly over a nine year period. Simultaneous use of vitamins E and C was associated with a lower risk of total mortality and coronary mortality after adjusting for alcohol use, smoking history, aspirin use, and medical conditions.
A landmark study following over 85,000 nurses over a 16-year period for a total of 1,240,000 person-years found that vitamin C supplementation significantly reduced the risk of heart disease. Intake of vitamin C from foods alone was insufficient to significantly affect the rate of heart disease. High quantities of vitamin C from supplements was essential to provide the protective effects. The study adjusted for age, smoking, and a variety of other coronary risk factors.
An international team pooled data from nine prospective studies of 293,000 people that included information on intakes of vitamin E, carotenoids, and vitamin C, with a 10-year follow-up to check for major incident coronary heart disease events in people without disease when the study began. Dietary intake of antioxidant vitamins was only weakly related to a reduced coronary heart disease risk. However, subjects who took as little as 700 mg of vitamin C daily in supplement form reduced their risk of heart disease events by 25 per cent compared to those who took no supplements. 
Researchers in Finland measured serum vitamin C levels in 2,419 middle-aged male participants of the ongoing Kuopio Ischemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study. Men with a history of stroke were excluded from this analysis. Participants were followed for up to 10 years; the outcome of interest was development of stroke. During the follow-up period 120 participants suffered a stroke. After controlling for potential confounders - including age, BMI, smoking, blood pressure, and serum cholesterol - the researchers found that men with a low vitamin C level in their blood were more than twice as likely as those with a higher vitamin C blood level to experience a stroke.
A stroke commonly occurs when a blood clot or thrombus blocks the blood flow to parts of the brain. A thrombus may form in an artery affected by arteriosclerosis. A recent study has shown how low plasma vitamin C was associated with increased risk of stroke, especially among hypertensive and overweight men.
Vitamin C preserves the integrity of the artery walls and strengthens cardiovascular tissue. Research indicates a reduced incidence of major coronary heart disease events at high supplemental vitamin C intakes. Recent studies have shown that vitamin C appears to reduce levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a marker of inflammation, and there is a growing body of evidence that chronic inflammation is linked to an increased risk of heart disease.
Most Americans fail to eat the US RDA for several vitamins and minerals. Supplements are not the problem; they are the solution. Malnutrition is the problem.
What is Orthomolecular Medicine?
Linus Pauling defined orthomolecular medicine as "the treatment of disease by the provision of the optimum molecular environment, especially the optimal concentrations of substances normally present in the human body." Orthomolecular medicine uses safe, effective nutritional therapy to fight illness. For more information: http://www.orthomolecular.org
Take the Orthomolecular Quiz at http://www.orthomolecular.org/quiz/index.shtml
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 "A unified theory of human cardiovascular disease leading the way to the abolition of this disease as a cause for human mortality". Rath, M., Pauling, L., J of Orthomolecular Medicine, 7: 5-15.7.
 "Long-term combined beneficial effects of physical training and metabolic treatment on arterioscleroses in hypercholesterolemic mice", Ignore, LJ, Publication of the National Academy of Science, Vol 101, 246-252, June 8, 2004.
 Am J Clin Nutr, Vol 64, No 2, p 190-6 Aug 1996.
 Department of Applied Biochemistry and Food Science, University of Nottingham, Loughborough Age Ageing, Jan 1988, 17 (1) p 35-41.
 Am J of Clin Nutr, Vol 80, No. 6,1508-1520, Dec 2004.
 "Plasma vitamin C modifies the association between hypertension and risk of stroke". S. Kurl, TP. Tuomaninen, JA. Laukkenen, et. al., Stroke, 2002, vol. 33, p 1568ó1573.
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