Vitamin C vs. The Common Cold

With winter approaching, it's time to address the age-old question: Can Vitamin C help ward off the effects of the common cold? When you're sick, all you can gain in the gym is a reputation for spreading germs. So let's look at recently analyzed research data from 30 published studies involving over 11,000 individuals who consumed at least 200 mg of Vitamin C a day.

Scientists found that Vitamin C could slightly reduce the severity and duration of cold symptoms. Taking high doses of the vitamin at the onset of a cold showed no consistent benefits for reducing the length or severity of symptoms. However, people exposed to short periods of extreme physical stress did benefit greatly from Vitamin C supplementation.

The Bigger Picture. Although it's usefulness as a preventative agent or therapeutic remedy appear to be minimal, Vitamin C halved the risk of catching a cold when tested on a study group of 650 physically active subjects (marathon runners, skiers and soldiers engaging in sub-arctic exercises). So it appears that those who maintain an active lifestyle can benefit from regular doses. Oranges, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, pineapple and other fruits are great sources of Vitamin C. And there are several additional sources in ON's line of vitamins and mineral supplements.
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