When Collagen Levels Drop
Collagen is a protein the most plentiful protein in your body. Its in your muscles, bones, tendons, ligaments, organs, blood vessels, skin, intestinal lining and other connective tissues.
While you cant measure your collagen level, you can tell when its falling. Collagen decreases as you get older, contributing to:
- Wrinkles and crepey skin
- Joint pain or osteoarthritis due to worn cartilage
- Gastrointestinal problems due to thinning of the lining in your digestive tract
Aside from aging, the top reason people dont have enough collagen is poor diet, Dr. Bradley says. Your body cant make collagen if it doesnt have the necessary elements.
Maximizing Your Vitamin C Absorption
Vitamin C is a crucial nutrient. But most of us dont get as much of it as we need. Why dont we and how can we get more?
Benefits of Vitamin C
Why Liposomal Vitamin C?
Only about 18% of the vitamin C we get from food is available in our blood stream, and the amount of vitamin C we get from normal capsule or powdered supplements is often far less.You can take more and more regular vitamin C in attempt to optimize their levels, but this can quickly lead to digestive problems like upset stomach and diarrhea.Liposomal formulations counteract these complications by increasing absorption. The vitamin C in our products is protected from the harsh environment of the digestive system inside of liposomal structures natural microscopic spheres of fat called phospholipids which make the absorption of Liposomal Vitamin C markedly higher than plain vitamin C equivalents. Liposomal formulations like our vitamin C also avoid gastrointestinal the side effects mentioned above at high doses.Core Med Science uses the latest liposomal technology to provide high absorption for essential nutrients with historically low absorption potential like vitamin C. We also strive to bring to market nutrients backed by the latest scientific evidence, which can help boost overall your health and support your immune system. From liposomal antioxidants like glutathione, curcumin, and vitamin C to immune system boosters like AHCC, our products can help you live a healthier and supported life.
Second Best: Collagen Supplements
If youre eating a healthy diet and feeding your body all the nutrients it needs to make collagen, you probably dont need a supplement, Dr. Bradley says. But theres nothing wrong with taking one.
Hydrolyzed collagen powder usually has no flavor and dissolves easily in beverages, smoothies, soups and sauces.
As for skin cream with synthetic collagen, it may work. It will add a film-like layer to your skin to reduce water loss and act as a barrier from environmental elements. But using skin cream is probably not as effective as healthy eating and protecting your skin from excessive sun exposure and sunburns, especially early in life, Dr. Bradley says.
Your skin is your bodys largest organ, she says. The same way you nourish collagen stores throughout your body will nourish your skin too.
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Uv Light Reactive Oxygen Species And Skin Damage
As mentioned above, the exposure of skin to UV light generates ROS. These radicals have a potential to start chain or cascade reactions that damage the cells. The harmful effects of ROS occur as direct chemical alterations of the cellular DNA, the cell membrane and the cellular proteins, including collagen.
Oxidative stress also triggers certain cellular events mediated by transcription factors such as ROS upgrade transcription factor activator protien-1 that increases matrix metalloprotienase production, leading to collagen breakdown. Oxidative stress induces nuclear transcription factor kappa B . This produces a number of mediators that contribute to inflammation and skin ageing. ROS also increase the elastin mRNA level in dermal fibroblasts. This may explain the elastotic changes observed in photoaged skin.
Although Vit. C alone can provide photoprotection, it works best in conjunction with Vitamin E , which potentiates the action of Vit. C four-fold. Hydrophilic Vit. C helps regenerate Vit. E, a liphophilic antioxidant. Thus, Vit. C and Vit. E together protect the hydrophilic and lipophilic compartments of the cell, respectively. Vit. C and Vit. E synergistically limit chronic UV damage by significantly reducing both cell apoptosis and thymine dimer formation.
Food Sources Of Vitamin C
Bell pepper, red, raw
Bell pepper, green, raw
In large population studies, people who eat lots of fruits and vegetables high in vitamin C appear to have a reduced risk for various types of cancer, including cancers of the mouth, esophagus, stomach, colon, and lung. But it’s not clear that these benefits come specifically from vitamin C. The Age-Related Eye Disease Study found that a daily supplement containing 500 milligrams of vitamin C, 400 international units of vitamin E, 15 mg of beta carotene, 80 mg of zinc, and 2 mg of copper can help slow the progression of macular degeneration, an age-related eye disease that causes vision loss. But we don’t know what benefits, if any, are conferred by vitamin C in particular.
Many people take vitamin C supplements in unnecessarily high doses to prevent or treat various conditions for which its effectiveness is unproved. The vitamin C supplements have variously been touted for preventing cardiovascular disease and osteoarthritis, staving off sunburn, and improving the appearance of wrinkles. None of these purported benefits have been verified in scientific studies.
The recommended vitamin C dosage per day for healthy women is 75 mg per day . For adults, the tolerable upper intake level the highest daily intake likely to pose no risks is 2,000 mg per day.
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Vitamin C And The Hmp Shunt
Glucose and ascorbic acid also work on the hexose monophosphate shunt. The HMP is a biochemical pathway that produces NADPH. White blood cells need NADPH to create superoxide and other reactive oxygen species that oxidize and destroy pathogens .
Vitamin C not only helps produce NADPH but also regulates quantities so the white blood cell does not create too much oxidative stress in its attempt to protect the body.
Vitamin C activates this important shunt while glucose inhibits it. This HMP shunt also produces ribose and deoxyribose which provide important raw materials for the formation of new white blood cell RNA/DNA .
When the immune system is under attack it needs to quickly produce new immune cells. If blood sugar is high enough to turn off the HMP shunt it will reduce the quantity of RNA/DNA and the amount of new immune cells formed.
White Blood Cells And Insulin Pumps
White blood cells have more insulin pumps than any other type of cell and may contain 20 times the amount of vitamin C as other cells. They also need 50 times more vitamin C inside the cell than in the blood plasma in order to handle the oxidative stress that occurs when they encounter a pathogenic substance .
When white blood cells encounter pathogenic bacteria and viruses they must ingest or phagocytize these organisms in order to neutralize them. The phagocytic index measures how effective a particular white blood cell is at destroying viruses, bacteria & cancer cells. Elevated blood sugar impairs this phagocytic index. In fact, a blood sugar of 120 reduces the phagocytic index by 75% .
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Tips For Getting Vitamin C
June 19, 2000 — Reaching the new RDA for vitamin C is easy if you incorporate a variety of fruits and vegetables into your diet, says Felicia Busch, MPH, a registered dietitian in St. Paul, Minn. A diet that contains five servings of fruits and vegetables should put you at about 200 milligrams a day.
According to the new Institute of Medicine recommendations, men need 90 milligrams of vitamin C a day, while women need 75 milligrams. If you’re pregnant, try for 80 to 85 milligrams, and if you’re nursing, you’ll need 115 to 120 milligrams. Smokers also need about 35 milligrams more because they deplete their stores of vitamin C faster.
Citrus fruits, berries, and peppers are particularly rich sources of vitamin C, Busch says. Some specific food values are listed below. Busch doesn’t recommend vitamin C supplements as an alternative or complement to fruits and vegetables. “A bad diet with supplements is still a bad diet, and you should really focus on eating a diet of nutritious foods first,” she says.
Another thing to remember is that vitamin levels begin to diminish after food is harvested. The longer produce has been in storage or in transit, the less vitamin C it will contain. So choose fresh fruits and vegetables whenever possible. And if it comes down to a choice between out-of-season fresh produce and frozen, take frozen. Out-of-season produce often travels long distances to reach market and therefore loses more of its nutritional value.
Adverse Reactions Of Topical Vitamin C
Topical Vit. C is largely safe to use on a daily basis for long durations. It can safely be used in conjunction with other common topical anti-ageing agents such as sunscreens, tretinoin, other antioxidants and alfa hydroxy acids such as glycolic acid. Minor adverse reactions include a yellowish discoloration of the skin, hypopigmented hair and staining of clothes, which occur due to oxidative changes of Vit. C. Once applied, Vit. C cannot be fully washed or wiped off the skin. Rarely, stinging, erythema and dryness are observed after use of topical Vit. C. These can easily be treated using a moisturiser. Care must be taken while applying Vit. C around the eyes.
Urticaria and erythema multiforme, following the use of topical Vit. C, have been documented. The toxic doses of Vit. C that lead to cellular apoptosis under laboratory conditions are 100-200-times the daily recommended dose, giving Vit. C a very high safety profile.
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How Can I Get More Vitamin C In My Diet
Vitamin C, or ascorbic acid, is vital for tissue growth and important to the immune system, heart, skin, and hair. It is also thought to neutralize free radicals that can weaken the immune system and helps in the production of infection-fighting white blood cells. You can increase the amount in your diet by eating foods like oranges, spinach, and other fruits and vegetables, and by choosing processed foods that have been enriched with it. The body cannot store this vitamin, so it must be consumed every day.
Eating a fortified breakfast cereal and an orange or drinking a glass of orange juice is a good way to start your daily vitamin C intake. Breakfast cereals that have been fortified with this vitamin can be sprinkled on yogurt to make a snack during the day. Fruit or vegetables high in vitamin C are excellent snack ideas and can be prepared and stored in the refrigerator for easy access.
Substituting spinach for lettuce in salads is a great way to add more vitamin C to your diet. Tomatoes, bell peppers, oranges and strawberries are all good sources, and all would make tasty and colorful additions to the spinach salad. Vegetables can be prepared ahead of time to add to stir frys and salads. Fruit salads make a healthy, vitamin-rich dessert when berries, kiwis, citrus fruits, and mangoes are added.
Vitamin D: Whole Foods Vs Fortified Foods
Fortified foods are meant to help boost vitamin and mineralintake. Theyre designed to add nutrients that dont naturally occur in theproduct. Sometimes iron, fiber, zinc or vitamin A is added. For instance, most milkis fortified with vitamin D and calcium is sometimes added to orange juice.
Since so few foods found in nature are good sources ofvitamin D, fortified foods provide most of the vitamin D found in the Americandiet, explains Taylor.
But she warns that some fortified foods can contain addedingredients that make the product less healthy, like sugar or hydrogenatedfats. Cows milk and most plant alternative milks are typically fortified withvitamin D, but its important to look for products with no added sugar.
Many types of yogurt and cereal are also fortified withvitamin D, but could contain excessive added sugar or saturated fat. Margarineis often fortified as well, but some products contain partially hydrogenatedoils, which should be avoided. Read labels to choose the best product for yourfamily.
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Best Food Sources Of Vitamin C:
The current adult RDA for vitamin C is 60 mg, however, as a practicing clinician, I recommend my clients get at least 200 mg from food and ideally supplement with another 500mg -1 gram daily. In cases of chronic health conditions, I will recommend much higher dosages.
Here are the best food sources to consume to boost your vitamin C levels. Eating some of these on a daily basis is recommended. If you are doing a fast and not consuming food, I wouldnt worry about it as your body will not have as great a need for vitamin C during the fast. But when you return to consuming food, be sure to include these vitamin C rich foods.
How You Cook Counts
The amount of vitamin K you get from foods depends on how you prepare it. Frozen foods — that you cook — often have more than raw forms. This is probably because frozen vegetables lose some of their water, which concentrates the vitamins. For example, a half cup of boiled frozen turnip greens nets you more than 425 micrograms. But eating raw turnip greens gives much less than that.
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How To Eat More Vitamin C
This article was co-authored by David Nazarian, MD. Dr. David Nazarian is a board certified Internal Medicine Physician and the Owner of My Concierge MD, a medical practice in Beverly Hills California, specializing in concierge medicine, executive health and integrative medicine. Dr. Nazarian specializes in comprehensive physical examinations, IV Vitamin therapies, hormone replacement therapy, weight loss, platelet rich plasma therapies. He has over 16 years of medical training and facilitation and is a Diplomate of the American Board of Internal Medicine. He completed his B.S. in Psychology and Biology from the University of California, Los Angeles, his M.D. from the Sackler School of Medicine, and a residency at Huntington Memorial Hospital, an affiliate of the University of Southern California.There are 26 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 159,007 times.
Can You Take Too Much Vitamin C
The tolerable upper intake for adults is 2 grams of Vitamin C consuming more than that can result in diarrhea and other unpleasant GI disturbances, says Greaves. She admits that severe side effects from too much ascorbic acid are very rare, but you may experience some discomfort if you take too much. Its pretty much impossible to have a vitamin C overdose, but lets not test that out.
The real problem with taking more vitamin C than you need is that it all goes to waste. Up to 100 mg a day of vitamin C will get almost completely absorbed, says Francesco-Maria Serino, MD, PhD. Above 100 mg a day and the fraction of vitamin C absorbed is progressively smaller. If you take more than 1 gram of vitamin C per day, less than 50% is actually absorbed and its eliminated by the kidneys.
That literally means that a 500 mg vitamin C supplement mostly gets peed down the drain.
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Should I Take More Vitamin C When Im Sick
Many people pop vitamin C pills when they feel a cold coming on. Though vitamin C helps the immune system, it does very little for a cold.
A study from the Australian National University found that vitamin C supplements did not prevent colds at all. Supplementation, in a few cases, helped people get over the cold a little bit faster since about 8 percent of participants had one less day of sickness due to vitamin C.
If you want to play it safe and add more vitamin C when youre sick, its still best to do it through food. Add more citrus or greens. Even if the vitamin C doesnt make a difference, the healthy food will help you feel better.
Geographical Location And Season
The closer you live to the equator, the more vitamin D youll be able to produce year-round because of your physical proximity to the suns rays.
Conversely, your opportunities for adequate sun exposure decreases proportionally the farther away from the equator you live (
While its vital to protect yourself from skin cancer by avoiding overexposure to sunlight, it takes very little unprotected sun exposure for your body to start producing vitamin D.
Although theres no official recommendation, sources suggest that as few as 815 minutes of exposure is enough to make plenty of vitamin D for lighter-skinned individuals. Those with darker skin may need more time .
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Biochemistry Of Vitamin C
Vit. C has a 5-hydrocarbon ring similar to that of glucose. With an attached hydrogen ion, LAA becomes a weak sugar acid, similar to other alfa hydroxy acids used in dermatology. With a metal ion, it forms a mineral ascorbate. There is a marked interest in synthesis of physiologically active and chemically stable ascorbate molecules as LAA is unstable in nature, especially when exposed to light.