Vitamin C : Colds
Does Vitamin C work as a treatment for the common cold?
Research done thus far suggests that Vitamin C, as an additional supplement to the diet, does not work on its own as a prophylactic for the common cold in most cases.
However, in groups of people who were tested as for the efficacy of vitamin C in treating the common cold, it was found that Vitamin C did actually work to reduce the expected duration of the common cold. Dr Holt and Iona MacDonald have an essay entitled ‘Vitamin C and the common cold’ which you can find in their book entitled ‘Natural Remedies that Really Work: A New Zealand Guide, published in 2010 by Craig Potton Publishing, P.O. Box 555, Nelson, New Zealand.
Also, people who took Vitamin C regularly were more likely to resist getting the common cold as a result of hard exercise followed by chilling, than those who did not take Vitamin C.
This would suggest that Vitamin C in fact does improve resistance and increase immune function.
In the studies which Dr Holt and Ms MacDonald mention, Vitamin C was just used as a supplement: 1000 mg daily was recommended as an average, safe supplement.
These studies do not discuss the use of other herbal treatments such as the use of garlic, or lemon juice which is taken in drinks, or other known herbal remedies which help to reduce the symptoms of the common cold.
Vitamin C, I think, works best when it is taken, not on its own as a supplement, but with those foods which complement it, such as lemon juice, and garlic, ginger and cinnamon.
Lemon juice contains high amounts of Vitamin C on its own. The common cold is best treated when the juice of a lemon is made into a hot drink, with added ginger, garlic, and cinnamon, and taken with honey. If a supplement of Ester C, or Calcium ascorbate, is taken at the same time, with about 500mg-1000mg of vitamin C, then the effect of the spiced up and honeyed lemon drink are remarkably pronounced. Use only 500 mg of Vitamin C for children under twelve years, and 1000 mg for adults. Up to three doses can be given per day, and continued for three days if the cold is severe.
Note: Dr Holt does not recommend doses of more than 1000 mg of Vitamin C per day for adults. Note that Vitamin C can interfere with some medications, so if you are on medication, then you should not take ANY Vitamin C without consulting your health practitioner for professional advice. Even if you are not taking medication, consult your doctor or naturopath to see about taking Vitamin C.
In my experience, this is the best way to use Vitamin C supplements, fo treating the common cold: that is, in combination with lemon drinks, garlic, ginger and cinnamon.