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Vitamin C may not prevent colds

Regular doses of vitamin C may not prevent a cold in most people but it might reduce its duration slightly, according to a major review of existing research....

orange vitamin cThe idea that vitamin C can prevent and treat a cold is a widespread belief and it became popular following Linus Pauling's book in the 1970s, "Vitamin C and the Common Cold". So it will come as some surprise to many people that research by Robert Douglas of the Australian National University in Canberra and Harri Hemilš of the University of Helsinki, Finland, concluded that regular doses of vitamin C do not reduce the risk of a cold!

So is vitamin C completely hopeless?! No, because it while vitamin C wont save you from catching a cold it does offer some hope as the duration of any colds that did develop was shortened, though "only by about half a day in adults, and slightly more in children". So having regular does of vitamin C was helpful, especially if people were suffering extreme physical stress such as skiers, soldiers and marathon runners who received great benefit from taking vitamin C.

So does this mean you stop eating fruit and throw away the Lemsip?! We dont think so because fruit is essential for all-round good health and multivitamins can help to supplement a healthy diet to play a role in preventing illness. You might not have less colds from vitamin C specifically, but eating a healthy balanced diet will strengthen your immune system greatly and this will help prevent illness. So while the benefits of fruit etc may not be a fail safe defence against bugs you will certainly be far healthier by eating them daily!

So what should your diet look like? Check out this article on optimal nutrition.

Source: New Scientist

To find out more about vitamin C, living a long, healthy, and happy life contact us!


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