Saturday, June 15, 2024

DNA Analysis Overturns Myths of Maya Empire's Child Sacrifice Rituals

Understand that we had it all wrong here.  Makes you wonder how much else our historical narratives have gotten just as wrong.

A community sacrificed a couple of boys every year for five hundred years and that was that.  DNA figured that out.

The unexpected surprise is that we are recovering DNA in our library of archeological sites and DNA is providing a useful new voice on the data.

I cannot wait to see DNA from the Baltic linked to the Greeks.

DNA Analysis Overturns Myths of Maya Empire's Child Sacrifice Rituals

13 June 2024

Detail of a reconstructed stone tzompantli, or skull rack, at Chichén Itzá

In the height of the Maya empire, the victims of human child sacrifice appear to have been very carefully selected.

According to a new analysis of ancient DNA led by researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, the chosen victims have something in common. The remains of 64 individuals found inside a subterranean chamber known as a chultún all belonged to young boys, many of whom were closely related. Among them, two sets of identical twins.

It's a discovery that contradicts the common notion that sacrifice victims tended to be young girls – an important insight into child sacrifice in Chichén Itzá, deep in the heart of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula.

"The similar ages and diets of the male children, their close genetic relatedness, and the fact that they were interred in the same place for more than 200 years point to the chultún as a post-sacrificial burial site, with the sacrificed individuals having been selected for a specific reason," says archaeologist Oana Del Castillo-Chávez of Centro INAH Yucatán.

We've known about the tragic fate of the children in the chultún since 1967, when excavations revealed the chamber and its grisly secrets. Likely once a water cistern, the chultún had been enlarged to connect to a nearby cave, a type of natural feature known to be connected to ritual sacrifice.

A detail of the tzompantli, which was used to display heads, at the center of Chichén Itzá. (Christina Warriner)

Within the chamber lay the remains of more than 100 children. But the sex of juvenile humans is difficult to determine merely by the shape of the bones, so the notion that the victims were female remained unchallenged.

Recently, however, evidence emerged suggesting that at least some of the victims were male. And with the application of more sophisticated technology, we've been able to retrieve and sequence ancient DNA that would have been impossible to study before.

Led by immunogeneticist Rodrigo Barquera, a team of researchers set about studying the Chichén Itzá bones, to learn and share the stories of the children to whom they belonged.

The first step was dating. This revealed that the chultún had been in use for the interment of human remains for more than 500 years, from the 7th to 12th centuries CE. Most of the remains, however, were deposited over a 200-year period, between 800 and 1000 CE – the height of the Chichén Itzá culture.

Next, the researchers performed analysis of the bones from 64 individuals, including genetic analysis, and an analysis of isotope ratios retrieved from bone collagen.

The isotope analysis revealed not just what the children ate, but the source of that food. Previous studies had suggested that some of the children were brought in from elsewhere, leading the researchers to wonder from whence they came. Since elements such as carbon and nitrogen in their diet would have replaced some of the material from which their collagen forms, the ratios of these isotopes in their remains could be linked to the location of a food source.

The big surprise was that the children all ate food that would have been found locally, meaning they were all from local communities.

El Castillo, the temple to the god Kukulcan, one of the largest structures in Chichén Itzá. (Johannes Krause)

But there were more surprises in store. All of the bones tested were from male children, and at least a quarter of them were closely related, with a similar diet, suggesting that they lived in the same household.

"Most surprisingly, we identified two pairs of identical twins," says archaeogeneticist Kathrin Nägele of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. "We can say this with certainty because our sampling strategy ensured we would not duplicate individuals."

This suggests the boys were likely being selected in pairs for rituals, the researchers say, with twins perhaps being especially desirable. Identical twins only happen by chance in 0.4 percent of the general population, so two pairs in the chultún is more than would be expected.

The Maya sacred text Popol Vuh recounts the tale of the Hero Twins, Hunahpu and Xbalanque, who avenge the sacrificial death of their father and uncle, themselves twins, by undergoing repeated cycles of ritual sacrifice and resurrection in order to trick the gods of the underworld.

"Early 20th century accounts falsely popularized lurid tales of young women and girls being sacrificed at the site," says anthropologist Christina Warinner of Harvard University.

"This study, conducted as a close international collaboration, turns that story on its head and reveals the deep connections between ritual sacrifice and the cycles of human death and rebirth described in sacred Maya texts."

The Leather of the Future


There is a market for cheaper artificial leather as the plastics industry knows.  None of it meets the high bar set by leather.  Anymore than particle board replaces natural wood.

And this makes clear that fungal material is just too soft to compete.

The fact is that animal hides are a by product of all animal husbandry and readily worked with to produce patches of leather feedstock.  We will not be in short supply.

You know that rabbit skin is too weak for much fabrication or wear.  However the fur itself when separated provides a wonderful insulation.  Then the skin could be layered and pressed using binders to do something as well.

I mention this because we have learned that rabbits running wild in the desert is transformational to the desert, which means plenty of rabbits.



The Leather of the Future

Your next jacket might be made of mushrooms.


June 11, 2024

The following recipe comes with a twist. Take a ½ cup of whole wheat flour and add ½ teaspoon of malt extract, ¼ teaspoon of cream of tartar, 1 tablespoon of xanthan gum and a dash of citric acid (lemon juice might do), then dissolve the mixture in 2 cups of water. Line a square baking tray with the resulting paste, sprinkle with mushroom spores (preferably reishi) and leave in the dark for 2 to 3 weeks. After that time, according to a new study by Assia Crawford and her colleagues, you may have grown enough fungal leather to fashion yourself a one-of-a-kind coin purse.

“At this point what we’re producing is not in the realm of day-to-day leather shoes, from a durability standpoint,” says Crawford. She is still tinkering in the lab with small-scale batches. But in theory, she says, a future is possible where most leather products are replaced by mushroom-derived alternatives.

Crawford is not the first to experiment with leathers made of mushrooms. Brands including Lululemon, Stella McCartney, and Hermès already use fungal fabrics in some high-end products, but most of these fabrics are expensive because making them is slow and labor-intensive. Crawford, who runs a bio-design lab at the University of Colorado, Denver, aims to design a new technique that will be so cheap and easy that these bio-designed fabrics could eventually out-compete traditional leathers made from animal hides and even faux leathers made from petroleum-based products.

To the touch, fungal leather feels a lot like leathers made from animal hide—supple, with a patchy texture. But the finish varies depending on how the fungal mats are treated after they are grown. A discerning user will more likely notice a difference in scent rather than one in appearance—fungal leather has an earthy, woody fragrance. But unlike sturdy leathers made from animal hide, Crawford’s mushroom leather is so soft that it can be easily scratched or damaged. So she imagines that, in the near-term, the material she’s making might end up as a lining for objects that don’t experience a lot of wear and tear, such as acoustic baffles that are hung from ceilings to reduce noise in open spaces, finishing touches to interior design, or “anything where perhaps you want that softer, gentler feel.”

A future is possible where most leather products are replaced by mushroom-derived alternatives.

Fungi are the invisible builders of the world, their bodies largely concealed inside soil. They are made of mycelium, a fabric that can assume a variety of textures and shapes. Mycelium can be tough enough to break through concrete or take on a shape that is fine as a silk feather. Just like plants have given us materials ranging from hardwood to cotton, fungi hold vast untapped potential for the development of construction materials or fabrics. Mycelium contains chitin, a complex molecule that is a primary component in the exoskeletons of insects and crustaceans and that is tougher than plant cellulose, which gives wood its hardness and cotton its toughness. Chitin can be flexible or durable or both, depending on the composition of the rest of the fungal tissue.

For candidate fungi species that would be suitable for leather production the researchers looked for the fastest colonizers, species that could grow quickly on a surface, outcompeting other microorganisms that may be present as spores in the air, Crawford said. “This is in the interest of making this viable,” she adds. To scale-up a process for industry, consistency in quality is paramount, and contamination is a major issue. In the end, “we narrowed it down to two species—Ganoderma lucidum, the reishi mushroom, which we see in traditional Chinese medicine, and pink oysters,” Crawford says.

Once the reishi or pink oysters (Pleurotus djamor) have grown, they form a surface an inch thick inside the baking trays. The reishi condenses into a uniform cream-colored mat, whereas the pink oysters acquire a rich sculptural pattern, which Crawford says she is especially drawn to. The next steps are to peel the mat off the growth paste with a spatula, then compress it with heat to a thickness of 2-3 millimeters, the same as conventional leather. A tanning process identical to the one used in leather manufacturing can have similar effects on these fungi mats, strengthening the fabric. But Crawford prefers to experiment with a process that relies on natural alternatives, like dying with blue-green algae.

The contemporary field of bio-design—which uses and is inspired by living organisms—is young, says Crawford. It’s just a couple of decades old and has grown out of a passion shared by scientists, designers, and architects to find sustainable alternatives for materials that have been mass-produced since the industrial revolution, and whose production or use harms the environment. Leather is one such commodity. Besides the objectionable practice of killing animals for their hides, the chemical tanning processes used to make animal-based leather tend to pollute freshwaters.

Once a hide is stripped off an animal carcass, it is fragile and would erode quickly if not for the chemical treatments. Slow, natural tanning such as soaking the leather in water infused with tree bark and ground nuts was common practice before the 1800s, but it can take weeks to achieve the same effect as submerging the material overnight in a synthetic solution rich in heavy metals, an industrial practice which has commodified leather. Many tanning factories in major leather producing nations, such as India, Pakistan, and Thailand, release wastewater from these synthetic processes that then contaminate rivers. And while faux-leather alternatives do not directly involve the killing of animals, many of the materials used to make them are plastics derived from fossil fuels, which means they are not biodegradable.

The twist in the recipe above is that the paste must be sterilized before it can be used to culture fungi, otherwise you stand a good chance of growing a field of yeast or bacteria before the reishi has a chance to take root. For now, this means that growing fungal leather is only possible in aseptic conditions, which are only affordable to boutique small-scale producers.

The reality of bringing fungal leather to the mass market is a challenge of scale and know-how, but it also requires the dismantling of existing practices which have made the mass manufacturing of animal leather so convenient and affordable. “It’s a bit like getting a wheel spinning for the first time,” says Crawford. “It takes more of a push.”

But perhaps one day wearing fungal leather will become second nature. 

Real Orbital Rocket With Radical Low cost

This may not be at all practical, but we are talking a single stage making it to orbit and then reentering and successfully returning.  We have made plenty of progress in engine design, so we are at least converging toward such a solution.  A little then like the first radio shack make your own computers back in the day.

Yet yes, a hot rocket delivering a small payload for cheap is welcome.  Yet Space X needs to deliver a container a day to meet its objective and small payloads will easily fit in then.  so we are going to get there anyway because we have solved the big problem of repetition.

And Space X will also deliver point to point large cargos on Earth in minutes as well cost effectively.  So we will ultimately have a huge working fleet.

Coming soon to an airport near you will be a lunch/ landing pad to handle this traffic.  Long imagined in Sci Fi.

Amazing BREAKTHROUGH: Real Orbital Rocket With Radical Low cost

By Brian Wang

JUN 12

Steve Jobs (Apple) and Commodore computers started the Personal computer revolution in 1976. The world changed from multi-million dollar mainframe computers to a world of sub-thousand dollar personal computers.

By 1980, there were over a million personal computers.

The world could change radically in the next few years. We currently live in a world where it costs over $50 million for a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. A rideshare on a Falcon 9 costs $350,000 for a 50 kilogram payload. However, you typically have to wait a year for a rideshare mission.

In 2027, instead of buying a Cybertruck, you could choose to buy your own reusable rocket and a small satellite to send up to orbit.

This rocket is real and the hardware is being tested. It is a low cost revolution.

Rocket Lab has the Electron rocket and it costs $7.5 million for a launch. the Electron rocket started at 225 kilogram payload but is now 320 kilograms.

<a href="">Sidereous Space will be able to launch 6U cubesats for $100,000.</a>

If they succeed in launching to sub-orbit next year (2025) they will already have a valuable business.

If they succeed with orbital launch in 2026 they will be ahead of other rocket companies with billion dollar or multi-billion dollar valuations.

The Sidereus rocket is designed to be fully reusable and single stage to orbit.

Who Will Build the Roads?” Part 1 with Wendy McElroy

This argument has honestly gone on for far too long and needs to be properly addressed on a global scale through generating a global consensus through the RULE of TWELVE.

The reason i say this is that the problem is local community consensus and it is at that level that land ownership or management needs to be addressed.  Understand that free title is a response to hierarchal encroachment.  A natural community is effective manager of identifiable lands through ideally a council of twelve and without BIG MAN rule.  This allows lifetime allocation to individuals and adjustments to ensure road easements and the like.  

all this can be staged to produce a larger network under contract without absurdities.

Our real problem is that we have been brainwashed to accept top down governance even when led by a patent donkey..  Yet nothing radical happens well without some form of consensus.  The real role of a BIG MAN is to lead a consensus and is thus naturally expendable.  The road system, not so much.

Who Will Build the Roads?” Part 1

June 11, 2024

Everyone who argues for the free market over government involvement in the economy has heard this common comeback: “Who will build the roads?” Sometimes, the question is sincere and deserves to be answered with patience.Reputations are essential because profit-hungry companies want to outcompete their rivals and grab a larger market share.

Much of the time, however, it is the dismissal of a complex argument and is intended to close off discussion with a glib victory.

It is annoying to answer and re-answer the same question for decades, but it is important to do so because the question “Who will build the roads?” captures a key obstacle to achieving a free economy. Namely, many people believe the private sector is either incapable of producing the goods and services society needs or that it would produce them in a destructive manner; for example, the profit-driven free market would produce such an expensive health system that the poor would be left to die.

“Who will build the roads?” There are many ways to answer this question. The Austrian economist Murray Rothbard liked to address the question by drawing a parallel. Rothbard’s approach on this issue has been famously called “The Fable of the Shoes.” If government had always enjoyed a monopoly on producing shoes, he observed, then someone who argued to privatize shoe-making would be viewed as heartless or moronic or both. “How could you!” defenders of the shoe monopoly would cry. “You must be opposed to the public and to poor people wearing shoes! And who would supply shoes … if the government got out of the business? Tell us that! Be constructive! It’s easy to be negative and smart-alecky about government; but tell us who would supply shoes?” These defenders of a government shoe monopoly would have so closely identified government with shoe-making that an attack upon its monopoly would have become an attack on shoe-making itself and upon shoe wearers.

Rothbard’s response of offering a parallel between shoe-making and road-building is powerful for several reasons.

First, it reveals an emotional dynamic that often underlies what should be a purely economic question. This hidden bias may be an honest one because it is easy for people to innocently pick up the assumptions and attitudes of their culture. If the questioner realizes his own hidden bias, however, he is more likely to listen to counterarguments.

Second, the “Fable of the Shoes” shifts the ground of argument and places the burden of proof onto the questioner. Remember: The burden of proof is on the person making an assertion. In most cases, the road questioner is implicitly stating that roads require central planning and tax-funding. Instead of going on the defensive, the free-market advocate should ask, “I don’t understand why free-market roads would be a problem. Why do you think they would be?” After all, like shoes, private roads have been common throughout history. If there is a reason they can’t occur in our society — at least, a reason that doesn’t come from government obstacles — then the burden is on the questioner to demonstrate why this moment in history is different than any other.

Third, Rothbard appeals to common knowledge. From infancy, everyone has experienced private-sector shoe-making; it is undeniable proof of how an important service is provided without government. And it is further fuel for the free-market advocate to ask, “In principle, why would free-market roads be different from free-market shoes?”

Fourth, the fable deflates the alleged dilemma of poor people going shoeless. In the free-market shoe zone that is America, next to no one is shoeless. For one thing, the charities that proliferate in prosperity distribute free clothing. But most of all, in a free market, a dazzling variety of shoes are mass manufactured, which makes them cheaper and more available in new and used forms, and more likely to be discarded by those who buy shoes frequently. At worst, some people will wear decent second-hand shoes; this is not the fault of freedom but of the inevitable poverty that occurs in every society. The incredible productivity caused by the profit incentive makes it far more likely for the poor to have shoes in America than in a communist country.
Complex systems

Shoe-making is a simple service/good compared to many others. And the same person who is convinced by “The Fable of the Shoes” may balk at the private sector controlling complex economic systems without government regulation. Governments around the world are now poised to hyper-regulate complex systems that are currently either free market or a hybrid of free market and government control due to the creeping intrusion of law; artificial intelligence, the Internet, and cryptocurrency are examples. With free-market cryptocurrency, governments want to assert an outright monopoly by issuing Central Bank Digital Currencies and eliminating free-market ones, if possible.

Objections to private-sector control grow even louder when the complex system involves an essential good or service. In economics, essential goods are physical items that consumers require to sustain health or life, like pharmaceuticals. “We are no longer discussing footwear,” skeptics will declare. “Without health and safety standards imposed on pharmaceutical companies, they will produce shoddy or dangerous drugs. Or the goods will be priced out of the reach of many of the people who need them most.” Because medicines are essential and some consumers could be excluded, advocates of government control maintain that such goods are too important to remain in private hands. The opposite is true, and this is ground on which the free market must be vigorously defended.

Again, there are many counterarguments on how the profit motive protects the public. Companies live or die on their reputations, which are difficult to regain if damaged by producing dangerous drugs. Reputations are essential because profit-hungry companies want to outcompete their rivals and grab a larger market share. Unless the company has governmental protection, there is always the risk of huge lawsuits if pharmaceuticals are negligently produced or misrepresented. Free-market economists can also point to the role of neutral and dependent third parties who rate and report on businesses; this is a privately created warranty of safety, quality, or performance. These are a mere sampling of the counterarguments available.

But, again, as with the shoe-making example, the best counter-argument on the drug issue is an existence proof; namely, a free-market pharmaceutical venture that was a roaring success. Happily, there are many. Consider just one. Almost everyone in North America has prescription drugs, vitamins, or similar supplements on their bathroom shelf with the initials USP somewhere on the label. The initials are a certification of quality from the United States Pharmacopeial Convention. USP is a fascinating example of how the free market can and does provide the complex standards upon which people’s health and life depend.

The USP was privately established as a nonprofit organization in 1820 when 11 physicians joined together to protect their patients from inconsistent and low-quality drugs. Back then, most drugs were assembled from recipes by individual pharmacists who had to trust the accuracy of their recipes, their skill at “cooking” drugs, and the quality of their ingredients. This means the drugs produced varied widely in quality, dosage, and ingredients. Moreover, many of the ingredients were untested on human beings so there was little science behind their use. Patients were often harmed, and they sometimes died from inaccurate doses or other quality-control issues. Shortly after forming, the USP began to publish the results of its lab analyses and other research on drugs through the United States Pharmacopeia, which became the authoritative compendium of drugs and drug usage, not only in America but through much of the world. The compendium includes standardized indications, dosage recommendations, warnings, contraindications, and off-label uses. The USP organization actively reached out to pharmacists and pharmaceutical schools to spread these drug standards, with incredible success. Rather than being indifferent to the public welfare, the overwhelming majority of medical people did not want patients to die from taking their advice.

Friday, June 14, 2024

We Used to Think Everybody Heard a Voice Inside Their Heads – But We Were Wrong

It appears that we have both options and it all still works.  Obviously we need to study all this and actually query those voices to see if it goes anywhere.

after all we also have nutbars who kill because of voices and if we can teach folks to listen and never act then that may be a good start.

My own inner voice has become far clearer which i want to note.

We Used to Think Everybody Heard a Voice Inside Their Heads – But We Were Wrong

25 May 2024

(Anand Purohit/Moment/Getty Images)

Only in recent years have scientists found that not everyone has the sense of an inner voice – and a new study sheds some light on how living without an internal monologue affects how language is processed in the brain.

This latest study, from researchers at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark and the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the US, also proposes a new name for the condition of not having any inner speech: anendophasia.

This is similar to (if not the same as) anauralia, a term researchers coined in 2021 for people who don't have an inner voice, nor can they imagine sounds, like a musical tune or siren.

Focusing on inner voices in this study, the team recruited 93 volunteers, half of whom said they had low levels of inner speech, while the other half reported having a very chatty internal monologue. These participants attempted a series of tasks – including one where they had to remember the order of words in a sequence, and another where rhyming words had to be paired together.

"It is a task that will be difficult for everyone, but our hypothesis was that it might be even more difficult if you did not have an inner voice because you have to repeat the words to yourself inside your head in order to remember them," says linguist Johanne Nedergård, from the University of Copenhagen.

"And this hypothesis turned out to be true."

The volunteers who reported hearing inner voices during everyday life did significantly better at the tasks than those without inner monologues: Inner speakers recalled more words correctly, and matched rhyming words faster. The researchers think this could be evidence that inner voices help people process words.

It's interesting to note that the performance differences disappeared when the volunteers spoke out loud to try and solve the problems they were given. It may be that using an audible voice is just as effective as using an inner voice in these situations.

In two other tasks, covering multitasking and distinguishing between different picture shapes, there was no difference in performance. The researchers take this as a sign that the way inner speech affects behavior depends on what we're doing.

"Maybe people who don't have an inner voice have just learned to use other strategies," says Nedergård. "For example, some said that they tapped with their index finger when performing one type of task and with their middle finger when it was another type of task."

The researchers are keen to emphasize that the differences they found would not cause delays that you would notice in regular conversation. We're still at the very early stages in terms of figuring out how anendophasia might affect someone – and likewise anauralia.

Early findings from research at the University of Auckland suggest people with a 'silent mind' remember verbal information in similar ways to those who experience typical auditory imagery.

But there may be differences we don't yet know about. One area the team thinks is worthy of further investigation is 'talking therapy' practices, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, which involves trying to change thought patterns. It may be that having an inner voice makes that easier for some people to achieve than others.

"The experiments in which we found differences between the groups were about sound and being able to hear the words for themselves," says Nedergård.

"I would like to study whether it is because they just do not experience the sound aspect of language, or whether they do not think at all in a linguistic format like most other people."

The research has been published in Psychological Science.

Vitamin C: Heals Wounds and Bolsters Immunity, Nearly Half of Americans Don’t Get Enough

It is maddening that no one steps up and makes sure that this stops.  Half the population should make it clear.  Circulatory disease is sub clinical scurvy.  This slowly kills you and certainly weakens you.

The dose levels shown here are also nonsense.  just take a  teaspoon of ascorbic acid every day.  It needs to be in a carrier and i just make up grapefruit peel extract for me.  All that is 4000 mg plus.  take your time to adjust, but it will be quick.

And also do 2000 mg vitamin D in tablet or capsule form.

The creeps simply do not want you to be healthy and we fail to make C and never get enough sunlight.

it actually is infuriating.

Vitamin C: Heals Wounds and Bolsters Immunity, Nearly Half of Americans Don’t Get Enough

Scurvy may seem like a historical disease, but cases still exist today. Find out what vitamin C does for your body and how to get enough of this vital vitamin.

Health BenefitsDeficiency PrevalenceDeficiency SymptomsDietary SourcesIntake OptimizationComplementary NutrientsTypesOther Intake OptionsRecommended Dietary AllowanceTestsSide Effects of ExcessInteractions

Citrus fruits are well-known for their vitamin C content, but other fruits and vegetables like guava and red bell pepper actually pack a bigger punch. (Illustration by The Epoch Times, Shutterstock)

June 07, 2024Updated:
June 11, 2024

A 69-year-old woman was rushed to the emergency room after experiencing a rapid weight loss of 20 pounds, widespread bruises, and muscle pain in her legs. She also suffered from weakness and small bleeding spots around hair follicles.

The patient was suffering from scurvy, a disease that took the lives of an estimated 2 million sailors between the 1500s and 1800s. Its cause? Severe vitamin C deficiency.

After adjusting her diet and taking vitamin C supplements, the woman soon reported less pain, better exercise tolerance, and significant improvement in her skin condition.
Before it was identified, this vitamin was designated “C” to signify its anti-scurvy properties. Vitamin C was later discovered in 1932 to be ascorbic acid, with ascorbic meaning “anti-scurvy.”

Our bodies require vitamin C to produce collagen, which is crucial for connective tissues, wound healing, and certain brain chemicals. Vitamin C also acts as an antioxidant and can regenerate other antioxidants, such as vitamin E.

This water-soluble vitamin can be found in various fresh foods, such as citrus fruits, bell peppers, and cruciferous vegetables. This article will also reveal other sources.

Inadequate levels of vitamin C have been linked to osteoporosis, diabetes, cancer, and schizophrenia. Supplementation with vitamin C can potentially reduce glucose concentrations, high blood pressure, and cholesterol. A 2017 meta-analysis found that vitamin C administration led to a significant decrease in glucose levels in patients with diabetes and older individuals. When administered intravenously, it can also be effective in treating cancer and serve as a potent adjuvant cancer treatment, enhancing the effects of various standard therapies, including chemotherapy. It can also act to reduce the toxic side effects associated with chemotherapy.

Unfortunately, vitamin C deficiency may be more prevalent than we previously thought.

What Are the Key Health Benefits of Vitamin C?

Vitamin C offers us a plethora of health benefits, the full extent of which researchers are still actively exploring. Some of the major ones include the following.

1. Aids in Liver DetoxificationVitamin C is essential for your liver because it helps regenerate a key detoxification tripeptide called glutathione. Glutathione plays a crucial role in reducing the toxic load in your body by improving the liver’s ability to convert and eliminate toxins, such as mercury and persistent organic pollutants.

Some toxins are fat-soluble. The liver transforms those toxins into water-soluble forms that can be excreted through urine or sweat. Glutathione is essential for this detoxification process, and vitamin C helps replenish it.

It’s worth noting that taking acetaminophen (Tylenol) can decrease glutathione levels and lead to lower vitamin C levels. Glutathione can also regenerate oxidized vitamin C.

2. Maintains Healthy Skin, Bones, and Connective TissueVitamin C helps make a crucial protein called collagen, essential for skin, bones, muscles, and even blood vessels. Without enough vitamin C, your body struggles to heal wounds, maintain strong bones and teeth, and absorb iron properly. Vitamin C is the director that tells the amino acids (building blocks for collagen) glycine, proline, and lysine how to synthesize collagen, ensuring your body can build and repair itself effectively.

3. Regulates ImmunityVitamin C helps the immune system by regulating its activity, which can be especially beneficial for autoimmune conditions and contributes to its immune defense. Specifically, vitamin C supports both the innate and adaptive immune systems. It also helps maintain the skin’s protective barrier by shielding it against harmful molecules called reactive oxygen species (ROS). Vitamin C also helps remove cellular debris and plays a role in the growth and function of critical immune cells, such as B- and T-lymphocytes, which produce antibodies for fighting infections.

Three of vitamin C's main functions are wound repair, immune system regulation, and collagen production. (Illustration by The Epoch Times, Shutterstock)

4. Converts Fat Into EnergyWhen the body uses fat for energy, it goes through a process inside tiny energy-producing units called mitochondria. Fats use a special shuttle called carnitine to enter mitochondria. Your body produces carnitine with the help of vitamin C. If you don’t have enough vitamin C, your body might struggle to break down fats for energy. If you’re following a ketogenic diet, which relies heavily on fat for fuel, your need for vitamin C may increase.

Meat contains some carnitine, and while the topic remains debated, some research suggests that a ketogenic diet may lower the body’s vitamin C requirement by enhancing mitochondrial function and boosting antioxidant levels through increased glutathione synthesis. However, if you are following a ketogenic diet and experience fatigue, it may be due to your body’s insufficient production of carnitine.
5. Reduces Heavy Metal AccumulationThe accumulation of heavy metals such as mercury and chromium can severely damage various organs and systems, such as the respiratory, nervous, and reproductive systems. Vitamin C can reduce heavy metal accumulation, possibly by scavenging free radicals generated by heavy metals, thus inhibiting their genotoxic effects, and by reactivating repair mechanisms that heavy metals have inactivated.

6. Regulates CholesterolOne systematic review found that vitamin C could decrease total cholesterol in people under 52 years old, and another study showed that taking at least 500 milligrams of vitamin C daily for at least four weeks could notably reduce serum low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and triglyceride levels. However, while the systematic review also found vitamin C supplementation capable of significantly increasing high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol levels, the second study didn’t find a significant increase in serum HDL.

7. Fights AtherosclerosisAtherosclerosis is characterized by the thickening or hardening of the arteries due to plaque accumulation in their inner lining. This plaque buildup restricts blood flow and can lead to various cardiovascular problems. Vitamin C helps protect against atherosclerosis by reducing the stickiness of white blood cells to artery walls, improving blood vessel function, and preventing the death of cells in blood vessel walls. This helps keep plaques in arteries stable and reduces the risk of blockages.

8. Improves Mental HealthIn addition to affecting mood, thinking, memory, and sleep, serotonin also helps control appetite, nutrient absorption, and gut movement. It is linked to various mental disorders, including depression, anxiety, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), sleep disorders, and schizophrenia. Vitamin C plays a crucial role in synthesizing serotonin. High levels of vitamin C are linked to better moods in male college students, and the vitamin can also improve the mood of hospitalized patients.

Because vitamin C supplements work quickly, have low toxicity, and are well-tolerated, they are currently considered a promising option for treating stress-related disorders such as depression and anxiety, especially when other treatments don’t work.

There is also a link between schizophrenia and low vitamin C levels. It is theorized that some individuals cannot properly metabolize adrenochrome, a byproduct of adrenaline, due to insufficient vitamin C levels. Research on glutathione S-transferase, an enzyme related to vitamin C that helps detoxify adrenochrome, supports this idea in some cases. However, not everyone with schizophrenia suffers from vitamin C deficiency.

9. Helps Adrenal Glands Generate Essential HormonesThe adrenal glands assist in the production of adrenaline, cortisol, and progesterone. Vitamin C contributes to the formation of these hormones in the following ways:Epinephrine (aka adrenaline) and noradrenaline: Vitamin C is crucial for producing and metabolizing adrenaline properly. Sometimes, people can produce adrenaline but cannot properly metabolize it. Without enough vitamin C, adrenaline levels can remain elevated, which can lead to increased anxiety and an exaggerated fight-or-flight response. This chronic fight-or-flight state can inhibit digestion, make it difficult to adapt to stress, impair healing, and lead to “hamster thinking,” where the mind is stuck in a loop of persistent worry.

Cortisol: As a “stress hormone,” cortisol temporarily reduces inflammation, and vitamin C can enhance cortisol production.

Progesterone: Vitamin C can help the adrenal glands produce more progesterone.

10. Boosts Iron AbsorptionVitamin C enhances the absorption of nonheme iron, which is present in plant-based foods such as leafy greens. Therefore, adding a vitamin C-rich food or drinking a glass of freshly squeezed 100 percent orange juice with meals containing nonheme iron sources may increase iron absorption. Freshly squeezed orange juice is reported to contain higher levels of vitamin C than commercial orange juices.

11. Prevents and Targets CancersCertain types of cancer exhibit inverse associations with vitamin C intake or concentration. In one 1999 study, premenopausal women with a family history of breast cancer had a 53 percent to 63 percent lower risk of developing the disease when consuming an average of 205 milligrams a day of vitamin C from food compared to those consuming an average of 70 milligrams per day.

One 2006 study showed that people with higher plasma vitamin C levels (≥ 51 micromoles per liter) had a 45 percent lower risk of developing gastric cancer compared to those with lower levels (< 29 micromoles per liter). In a 2017 study, vitamin C demonstrated roughly 10-fold greater effectiveness than an experimental drug targeting cancer stem-like cells.

12. Improves Endothelial DysfunctionEndothelial dysfunction occurs in the early stages of vascular disorders, which can contribute to complications such as stroke, heart attack, diabetes, and metabolic syndromes. A 2014 meta-analysis found that short-term vitamin C supplementation reduced endothelial dysfunction in individuals with heart failure, atherosclerosis, or diabetes. Therefore, vitamin C supplementation may help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.

13. Regulates Folate MetabolismFolate metabolism involves how our bodies use folate, a type of vitamin B, which is crucial for many processes. One critical process is methylation, vital for synthesizing DNA, regulating gene expression, producing neurotransmitters, and detoxifying ourselves from harmful substances. Vitamin C helps with folate methylation and boosts folate levels. Plus, it might lower levels of a compound called homocysteine, linked to heart disease risk.

14. Slows Age-Related Macular DegenerationResearch indicates that combining vitamin C with other nutrients can potentially slow the progression of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). A 2001 study involving 3,640 individuals aged 55 to 80 years with AMD, who were at high risk of advanced AMD, found that those who took a daily dietary supplement containing 500 milligrams of vitamin C, 80 milligrams of zinc, 400 international units (IUs) of vitamin E, 15 milligrams of beta carotene, and 2 milligrams of copper for approximately six years had a reduced likelihood of developing advanced AMD. They also experienced less vision loss than those who did not take the supplement.

How Common Is Vitamin C Deficiency?

The 2005–2016 NHANES survey reported that 46 percent of U.S. adults had an “inadequate” vitamin C intake. Furthermore, daily intake dropped 17.5 percent between 2002 and 2020.

Scurvy still occurs today in developed countries. According to a 2013 clinical case report, “In developed countries, scurvy is still endemic, and evidence is growing that vitamin C deficiency might affect up to 30 percent of the population.”

Cases of scurvy have been reported as recently as 2022, including a 12-year-old in Canada and a 53-year-old male in Philadelphia.

What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Vitamin C Deficiency?

A 5-year-old girl with a rash and pain in both legs was found to have a vitamin C deficiency and scurvy after several misdiagnoses. She was started on vitamin C and admitted to an intensive feeding program, which successfully increased the number of new foods in her diet. After one year, all symptoms related to vitamin C deficiency resolved.

Unfortunately, many doctors do not investigate vitamin C deficiency as a potential cause of symptoms, thus leading to misdiagnosis. For instance, symptoms of Crohn’s disease can overlap with those of scurvy, making vitamin C deficiency less commonly diagnosed. However, the consequences may be deadly.

Vitamin C deficiency typically results from a diet low in vitamin C.

The risk of deficiency increases with conditions that increase the body’s vitamin C needs, such as pregnancy, breastfeeding, high fever or inflammation, hyperthyroidism, prolonged diarrhea, surgery, Type 1 diabetes, burns, stress, and smoking.

Other risk factors of vitamin C deficiency include:Excessive alcohol intake

Infant feeding practices: Choosing cow’s milk over breast milk or fortified formula for infants can increase the risk of vitamin C deficiency due to insufficient vitamin C content in cow’s milk.
Malabsorptive disorders: Conditions such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and cystic fibrosis can impede the body’s vitamin C absorption.
Bariatric surgery: People who have had bariatric surgery face reduced absorption capacity.
Iron-overload conditions: Conditions characterized by excess iron accumulation and renal loss of vitamin C can contribute to vitamin C deficiency as the body may struggle to retain and utilize this vitamin effectively.
Food allergies: Allergies to certain foods can restrict dietary choices, potentially limiting the intake of vitamin C-rich foods.
Developmental disabilities and mental illness: These medical conditions may influence food preferences, potentially leading to inadequate consumption of vitamin C-rich foods.Symptoms of vitamin C deficiency develop after weeks to months of vitamin C depletion. They may vary depending on the patient’s age.
In adults, early symptoms include:Fatigue
Weight loss
Vague muscle pain
Joint painOther symptoms and signs include:Femoral neuropathy due to bleeding into femoral sheaths (the sleeve-like structure encasing the femoral artery and vein)
Swelling in the lower extremities
Painful bleeding
Abnormal accumulation of fluid inside a joint cavity
Dry and splitting hair
Gingivitis (inflammation of the gums) or bleeding gums
Rough, dry, and scaly skin
Slow wound healing
Easy bruising
Subcutaneous bleeding
Potential weight gain due to a decrease in metabolic rate
Varicose veins: The development of varicose veins may occur due to the lack of collagen caused by vitamin C deficiency, as collagen plays a role in shaping the vascular system. Insufficient vitamin C levels can lead to vein ruptures or bulging, resulting in varicose veins.
Heavy metal toxicity: Vitamin C plays a crucial role in protecting against certain heavy metals, so low levels could contribute to increased levels of heavy metals in the body.
Estrogen dominance: Vitamin C can boost progesterone production. Low progesterone levels can cause estrogen dominance, which may contribute to thyroid issues.In infants and children, signs and symptoms include:Irritability
Painful movement
Slowed growth
Impaired bone growth
AnemiaSymptoms of scurvy include:Persistent fatigue and weakness
Chronic irritability and sadness
Pain in joints, muscles, or legs
Swollen and bleeding gums (with a risk of tooth loss)
Red or blue spots on the skin, often on the lower extremities (might be less visible on darker skin tones)
Easily bruised skin

What Are the Dietary Sources of Vitamin C?
Humans cannot synthesize or store vitamin C, unlike some other species, so we must obtain this nutrient through our diet. When enjoying food, remember that it contains different types of nutrients that interact with each other in complex ways.

Fresh fruits and vegetables are the primary and best dietary sources of vitamin C.
Fruits rich in vitamin C (content per 100 grams), with content listed in milligrams (mg), include:Guavas (228 mg)
Red bell peppers (142 mg)
Kiwifruit (92.7 mg)
Persimmons (66 mg)
Papayas (60.9 mg)
Strawberries (58.8 mg)
Lemons (53 mg)
Pineapples (47.8 mg)
Oranges (45 mg)
Cantaloupes (36.7 mg)
Mangos (36.4 mg)
Cooked ripe red tomatoes (22.8 mg)Vegetables rich in vitamin CKale (93.4 mg)
Broccoli (89.2 mg)
Brussels sprouts (85 mg)
Mustard greens (70 mg)
Turnip greens (60 mg)
Red cabbage (57 mg)
Cauliflower (48.2 mg)
Bok choy (45 mg)
Green peas (40 mg)
Swiss chard (30 mg)
Spinach (28.1 mg)Some types of meat and organs also contain vitamin C, such as:Cooked beef spleen (50.3 mg)
Cooked veal thymus (39.4 mg)
Cooked beef lungs (32.7 mg)
Cooked fish roe (16.4 mg)In-season fruits and vegetables are good dietary options for vitamin C, as those grown under optimal conditions have the highest levels of vitamins, nutrients, and antioxidants. For instance, broccoli harvested in the fall can have nearly double the vitamin C compared to broccoli grown in the spring.

Growing your own produce or buying locally can also lead to elevated vitamin C levels. Local farmers often pick when the produce is ripe and prioritize freshness and flavor over shelf life, thus reducing or eliminating the need for anti-ripening agents.

How Can I Optimize Vitamin C Intake and Absorption?

Even if you eat enough vitamin C-rich foods, your absorption of the vitamin may still be insufficient due to factors such as cooking methods and dietary habits. What can we do to enhance vitamin C intake and absorption?Avoid prolonged storage and cooking when possible: Long-term storage and cooking can diminish the vitamin C content in food since ascorbic acid, being water-soluble, breaks down with heat. Luckily, many top vitamin C sources, such as fresh fruits and vegetables, are commonly eaten raw. You can also turn them into smoothies and salads.

Choose the proper food preparation method: Steaming or microwaving is better than high-heat cooking to minimize vitamin C loss. Cooking quickly or using minimal water, such as stir-frying or blanching, also helps retain the vitamin since vitamin C may end up in the liquid after cooking.

Eat raw foods at peak ripeness: Fruits and vegetables at peak ripeness contain the most vitamin C.

Which Nutrients Boost Vitamin C’s Effects?

Vitamins C and E are antioxidants that can work synergistically to protect cells from oxidative stress. In a 2012 trial involving 23 Alzheimer’s disease patients, researchers combined vitamin C (1,000 milligrams a day) and vitamin E (400 IU per day) supplementation with a cholinesterase inhibitor. After a year, this combination significantly increased antioxidant levels and reduced lipoprotein oxidation in the cerebrospinal fluid.

Vitamin C is also involved in the oxidation-reduction (redox) recycling of key antioxidants, such as regenerating oxidized vitamin E back into its active form.

Bioflavonoids are a group of plant compounds with antioxidant properties found in fruits, vegetables, grains, tea, and wine. Bioflavonoids are often included in dietary supplements due to their potential health benefits, including anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting effects.

Research suggests that bioflavonoids can enhance vitamin C absorption while collaborating with it to combat free radicals, regulate inflammation, and support immune responses.

What Are the Different Types of Vitamin C?

L-ascorbic acid exists in nature and foods. It is an active form of vitamin C readily absorbed by the body.

There are many different types of synthetic derivatives of vitamin C, which can be found in various supplements, skin care products, and fortified foods. Plant-based sources include acerola, rose hips, elderberry, and camu camu, as well as synthetic sources.

Some examples of synthetic vitamin C include:Synthetic l-ascorbic acid: This type of vitamin C is a white to pale-yellow powder with a sharp, acidic taste, and almost no smell. This form helps enzymes work properly, acts as an antioxidant in food, helps plants grow, and protects against aging. Natural and synthetic l-ascorbic acids are chemically identical, with no known differences in their biological activity or how well they are absorbed and used by the body.

Sodium ascorbate: Sodium ascorbate is an organic sodium salt. It’s considered a “buffered” form of vitamin C because it is less acidic than ascorbic acid. It is often used in supplements and is gentler on the stomach.

Calcium ascorbate: Sodium ascorbate and calcium ascorbate are the most common buffered forms of vitamin C. It’s less acidic and easier on the digestive system.

Ascorbyl palmitate: Ascorbyl palmitate is a fat-soluble form of vitamin C easily absorbed by the body. It has all the same benefits as the water-soluble vitamin C forms. It is also a powerful antioxidant that protects fats in the body from damage and fights free radicals. It is widely used in skin care products.

SupplementsVitamin C supplements come in various forms, including tablets, capsules, chewables, gummies, dissolving powders, liquid forms, and liposomal options. These include unencapsulated versions, traditional without added fats, and encapsulated forms such as liposomal. A liposome is a fatty, spherical vessel that transports microscopic particles in the body.

The debate over the optimal form of vitamin C supplementation continues. Those seeking less processed options advocate for whole-food supplements.

The efficacy of liposomal vitamin C absorption in terms of synthetic sources is also contested. A 2021 study concluded that liposomal vitamin C was 1.77 times more bioavailable than non-liposomal vitamin C. Some health authorities continue to recommend traditional vitamin C supplementation. In addition, the absorption rate of oral vitamin C is comparatively low.

When opting for a synthetically derived traditional form of vitamin C, make sure it is buffered with minerals, such as calcium and magnesium. Buffering helps prevent potential irritation in the gastrointestinal tract caused by acidity. Moreover, it should be fully reduced to avoid oxidation. Synthetic vitamin C production necessitates a nitrogen blanket (nitrogen gas) to prevent oxidation, ensuring that the supplement remains fully reduced and retains its efficacy.

Synthetic forms of vitamin C are commonly derived from corn, including liposomal vitamin C. Therefore, if you have allergies or sensitivities to corn or gluten, verify the source of the vitamin. Furthermore, if you wish to steer clear of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), carefully check the origin of the synthetic vitamin C used in the supplement since corn is often genetically modified.

ContraindicationsVitamin C supplementation also has contraindications. Supplementation is not recommended for individuals with certain blood disorders such as thalassemia, G6PD deficiency, sickle cell disease, and hemochromatosis. It’s also advised to avoid taking vitamin C supplements around the time of angioplasty procedures.

Diabetic patients should exercise caution when taking vitamin C supplements, which can elevate blood sugar levels. Individuals with oxalate nephropathy or nephrolithiasis should also be cautious, as vitamin C supplementation can potentially increase the risk of precipitating cysteine, urate, and oxalate stones.

It’s also advisable to avoid high doses of vitamin C supplements during pregnancy, as they may result in vitamin C deficiency in the newborn following birth.

Intravenous Supplementation Vitamin C can be administered intravenously (IV) in medically supervised settings to achieve higher levels in the bloodstream. This approach can improve the quality of life in people with advanced-stage cancers.

The gastrointestinal (GI) tract obtains most of its nutrition from oral intake. Therefore, IV vitamin C, which bypasses the GI tract, can begin to weaken. Thus, IV vitamin C isn’t a long-term solution, but it may be helpful in acute situations.

What Are Other Ways to Get Vitamin C?

Vitamin C is also available in topical skin care products, such as serums, creams, and transdermal patches. Such products are popular due to the naturally high levels of vitamin C in healthy skin.

Vitamin C stimulates collagen production and shields against UV damage. In a 2015 study, participants who used a vitamin C-loaded dissolving microneedle patch with an anti-wrinkle effect for three months showed a significant improvement in skin texture and appearance without experiencing cumulative skin irritation or sensitization. The researchers believed that this patch could be effectively used in anti-wrinkle cosmetics.

Magnesium ascorbyl phosphate (MAP) is the most stable and preferred form of vitamin C for skin care. This molecule, which loves lipids, is readily taken in by the skin. Surprisingly, its absorption isn’t hindered by crossing the outer skin layer (stratum corneum) but rather by how it’s released from the product. MAP moisturizes the skin and reduces water loss throughout. It also fights free radicals, protecting against sun damage, and in lab settings, it boosts collagen production.

Yet research indicates that topical vitamin C products, in general, may offer limited advantages since only a small amount can permeate the skin, providing no extra benefits if one already gets sufficient vitamin C from their diet or supplements. Also, since sunlight reduces vitamin C in your skin, it’s better to apply topical vitamin C after sun exposure rather than before.

What Is the Recommended Dietary Allowance of Vitamin C?

The dietary reference intakes (DRIs) from the Food and Nutrition Board (FNB) at the Institute of Medicine provide intake recommendations for vitamin C and other nutrients.

The recommended dietary allowances (RDAs) for vitamin C are based on the amount of vitamin C believed to provide antioxidant protection, with the understanding that there are “wide uncertainties in the data utilized to estimate the vitamin C requirements.”

For infants up to 12 months, the adequate intake (AI) is set to match the average vitamin C intake of healthy, breastfed infants.

The RDAs for vitamin C. (The Epoch Times)

A 2012 study’s researchers concluded that 200 milligrams per day is the optimal dietary intake of vitamin C for most adults. This will maximize health benefits and lower the risk of heart disease, cancer, eye diseases, and neurodegenerative conditions. Eating five servings of fruits and vegetables daily can supply over 200 milligrams of vitamin C.

How Can I Test My Vitamin C Levels?

No definitive test consistently and reliably detects vitamin C deficiency, which is one reason it is underdiagnosed.

Vitamin C levels differ between serum, plasma, and body tissues. In the bloodstream, vitamin C levels typically range from 0.4 to 1.7 milligrams per deciliter, but concentrations in tissues can vary widely and are usually higher. Red blood cells can contain vitamin C levels approximately 80 times greater than those found in the blood. However, lymphocytes offer the most accurate assessment, as lymphocytic vitamin C levels remain relatively stable, unaffected by daily rhythms or diet changes.

Doctors can use plasma tests and leukocyte vitamin C assays to measure vitamin C levels. Doctors often recommend these tests to check for vitamin C deficiency and begin treatment if symptoms are present. The tests provide insight into cardiovascular, immune, and nutritional health. Measuring leukocyte vitamin C concentration might offer more precise indications of tissue vitamin C levels than plasma tests.

The plasma vitamin C test involves venipuncture, drawing blood from the inner elbow or back of the hand and storing it in a sealed container. Results are typically available within three to four days.
While plasma vitamin C concentration reflects recent dietary intake, the vitamin C level in leukocytes (white blood cells) is a better indicator of the body’s vitamin C stores. The leukocyte vitamin C assay is designed to determine the concentration of vitamin C inside white blood cells. It involves isolating leukocytes from a blood sample, treating them with a reducing agent to release intracellular vitamin C, and then quantifying the vitamin C concentration, typically using colorimetric or fluorometric methods.

What Happens if I Get Too Much Vitamin C?

As a water-soluble vitamin, vitamin C is generally safe at high doses with low toxicity. The main side effects of vitamin C excess (aka, toxicity) include diarrhea, nausea, abdominal cramps, and other digestive issues.

Infants born to mothers taking high doses of vitamin C (over 6,000 milligrams) may experience rebound scurvy due to a sudden drop in their vitamin C intake after birth. Pregnant women should consult their doctor before consuming over 1,000 milligrams of vitamin C.

The FNB has also set upper limits (ULs) for vitamin C, which apply to both dietary sources and supplements.
The upper limits for vitamin C intake are the same for both sexes and are as follows:

Birth to 12 months: unestablished

1 to 3 years: 400 milligrams
4 to 8 years: 650 milligrams
9 to 13 years: 1,200 milligrams
14 to 18 years: 1,800 milligrams
14 to 18 years (pregnancy): 1,800 milligrams
14 to 18 years (lactation): 1,800 milligrams
Over 19 years: 2,000 milligrams
Over 19 years (pregnancy): 2,000 milligrams
Over 19 years (lactation): 2,000 milligramsThese ULs don’t apply to individuals receiving vitamin C for medical treatment.

Which Medications Interact With Vitamin C?

Before taking vitamin C supplements, inform your doctor of all your current medications and dietary supplements. At least 30 medications reportedly interact with vitamin C. Some examples include:Aspirin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs): These medicines can decrease the amount of vitamin C in your body by increasing its loss through urine. Conversely, high doses of vitamin C can lead to higher levels of these drugs in your bloodstream.
Oral contraceptives and hormone replacement therapy (HRT): When taken with birth control pills and HRT, vitamin C can cause an increase in estrogen levels.
Acetaminophen: High doses of vitamin C can reduce the amount of acetaminophen excreted in urine, potentially increasing the levels of this drug in your bloodstream.
Certain antibiotics: Taking vitamin C with antibiotics tetracycline, minocycline, and doxycycline might increase their levels in the body. However, they can also reduce the effectiveness of vitamin C.
Barbiturates: Barbiturates such as phenobarbital, pentobarbital, and seconobarbital can reduce vitamin C’s effectiveness.
Aluminum-containing antacids: Vitamin C can enhance the absorption of aluminum from these medications, potentially intensifying their side effects.
Warfarin: Vitamin C has occasionally been reported to interfere with the effectiveness of the blood-thinning medication warfarin.