Vitamin C – The Untold Story

What you don’t know….

Rose Hips = Vitamin C !

Rose Hips = Vitamin C !

Vitamin C.  If you know me, you have heard me mention this vitamin.  There is so much to say about it.  Lately, I’ve been reading Primal Panacea by Dr. Thomas E. Levy, M.D.   This is the book that finally pushed me over the edge – I had to blog about it!

I remember back in college reading about using Vitamin C to treat cold symptoms.  I also remember taking a couple 1,000 mg caps and not getting any noticeable results…

Turns out, it’s all about the dose.

CHART-mineral interrelationshipsOK, first of all, we know that all vitamins and minerals are important – they’re required by the body, and are a vital part of maintaining organ function, energy flow, general health.  Take a good multi – preferably one with trace minerals.  Every single day.  I do, along with extra C, E, D, selenium, CoQ10, and a few others.  Your body runs on and is energized, repaired, detoxified and maintained by the chemical reactions that are going on 24/7 inside you.  If the chemistry is right, with all the nutrients, enzymes and electrons present, accounted for and moving efficiently, then good health is the end result.  When nutrients are missing, or when foreign substances are present, chemical reactions slow down or get blocked, the body can’t repair or even respond to incoming challenges, and things start to go south, as they say.

HOW-TO-HAVE-A-HEALTHIER-DOGI first learned about high-dose vitamin C from Dr. Wendell Belfield’s books How to Have a Healthier Dog and The Very Healthy Cat Book.  He treated, with great success, “incurable” diseases like Distemper in dogs and Feline Leukemia in cats. Despite all the doubters and nay-sayers, of which there were many, he persevered and is one of my personal heroes.  He saved the lives of many animals,  and improved quality of life for many, many more.  All of my animal friends now receive extra Vitamin C every single day.

Did you know that most animals make their own Vitamin C?  For some reason, humans and guinea pigs (and a few others) cannot.  A goat, however, that is roughly the same body weight as a human makes 13,000 milligrams per day when in good health and a supportive environment.  When faced with life threatening disease or toxic challenge, goats can and do produce as much as 100,000 mg of vitamin C a day.  Whaaaat?

“Yes, the vast majority of other mammals produce their own vitamin C, as do most birds, fish, reptiles, and amphibians.  For all of these animals, vitamin C plays an essential role in protecting them from pathogens and toxins.

Humans, on the other hand, must satisfy their need for vitamin C through diet or supplementation. The fact that guinea pigs share in this inability to synthesize their own vitamin C is the primary reason these animals are used for research.  Guinea pigs can be made sick or toxic much more easily than a vitamin C-producing animal, allowing many experiments to be performed more quickly and efficiently.”

Oh, snap!  Dr. Levy has this whole Vitamin C thing completely nailed down.  How sad for the guinea pigs…

Have you ever wondered about how vitamin C actually works?  There are thousands of published studies that demonstrate the efficacy of vitamin C in neutralizing toxins, curing most infections, and acting as an antiviral. But how is this possible?

It seems that all toxins and infections have something in common. They all cause damage by increasing oxidative stress.  Oxidation is a process of electron exchange. When a substance loses electrons, that substance is considered to be oxidizing.   Long story short, Vitamin C exchanges electrons readily, helping neutralize harmful molecules and repair cellular damage via this amazing electron-exchanging ability.  Who knew?

Thankfully, Dr. Levy (and others before him) figured it out:

“That’s it. There is no other way in which a toxin can be toxic beyond the impairment of electron supply and flow in the biomolecules of the affected tissues.  And this is precisely why properly dosed vitamin C, before the point of irreversible tissue damage, will neutralize the toxicity of any toxin exposure or poisoning encountered.”

“In the 1940s Frederick Klenner, MD pioneered the use of mega-gram intravenous doses of vitamin C to effectively treat and often cure many different infections.  These included ones even now considered to be incurable, such as polio, tetanus, and encephalitis. He also led the way in demonstrating the ability of vitamin C to act as the ultimate antidote in reversing the toxicity of otherwise fatal doses of agents such as carbon monoxide, pesticides, barbiturates, and even heavy metals.”

Wow.  That’s a well-kept secret.

My first personally relevant Vitamin C experience occurred when I had a very unpleasant flu-like infection.  My back and shoulders were incredibly achey and painful.  Couldn’t sleep.   I was just about to take an ibuprofen.  Instead, I put 2 tsps of Sodium Ascorbate (about 6,000 mg Vitamin C) in 16 oz of water, and chugged it.  Went back to bed.  About 15 minutes later, I actually felt the inflammation leaving my back and shoulders.  My shoulders, neck and back continued to pleasantly tingle as the pain further dissipated, and I fell into a sound and restful sleep.  Major convincer.

JuicingCarrotsCeleryBeetGreensNov2014Since then, I have experimented with different doses and forms.  Researched a lot.  Now I average somewhere between 6,000 and 9,000 mg of Vitamin C per day.  I feel so much better!   Inflammation is way way down for me, energy up, and life is good.  I’ve done a lot of other things, like food elimination, juicing, daily walks, Feldenkrais classes, organic gardening, skin brushing, coffee enemas and saunas, all of which have speeded my recovery from what used to be chronic, debilitating inflammation and a generally unresourceful approach to life. The simple act of lifting an empty plant pot would result in a week-long bout of neck and back pain and general malaise.  Chronic inflammation makes life much harder – your outlook and decisions can be strongly influenced by the never-ending cycle of discomfort.  And you lose mobility.

Maintaining mobility is important.  Moving your body = moving your lymphatic fluid.  Gotta keep those cells moving.  I’m incredibly invested in maintaining mobility because my gardens need me.  I like being able to dig up roses and haul stuff around.  I help my husband load rocks and shovel manure.  We do all kinds of outdoor projects together.  I take my dog for a walk every day.  All with little or no pain.  Not bad for girl in her 60’s!

I use sodium ascorbate powder in my drinking water throughout the day and night.  Both Linus Pauling and Dr. Thomas E Levy recommend this form.  Sodium ascorbate is the form recommended by Dr. Belfield for dogs and cats, as well.  I’ve been ingesting sodium ascorbate for a few years now, so I feel it is perfectly safe in regard to sodium, in case you were wondering.  It’s a buffered form of C, so can be taken without stomach upset.

Vitamin C, being water soluble, is best when taken frequently throughout the day.  You may have to work up to a dose of 5,000 mg or more.  Just try it for a couple weeks and see how you feel.  Go gradually, because taking more than you need (or can absorb) in a short amount of time can lead to gassiness and/or diarrhea. Put 1,000 mg in a tall glass of water and drink half now, half in an hour or so.  Then repeat throughout the day.

Or make a Magic Cherry Soda!

1 oz Knudsen’s Cherry Juice
7 drops Vanilla Stevia
1 oz Coconut Milk
1/4 tsp sodium ascorbate powder (800 mg Vitamin C)

Stir above together, then fill the glass with bubbly water.  Delicious and anti-inflammatory.  Hydrating.


I personally aim to keep my body flooded with Vitamin C at all times.  Dr. Levy agrees:

 “Vitamin C is the best way to maintain good health.  Infections rarely have the opportunity to take hold when vitamin C levels are normal in the body.”

“Every health problem will respond to treatment and recover better when patients are receiving adequate levels of vitamin C.”

Did you know that the dreaded Shingles virus has been very successfully treated with IV administration of Vitamin C?  In three separate published studies, Shingles was successfully treated and resolved with high dose Vitamin C.  In one of those studies, complete resolution of  the disease was seen in 100% of the 327 cases studied within 72 hours.  Can you imagine?  All those painful symptoms, the energetic depletion, the anguish and the aftereffects of an extended period of extreme inflammation…. instead of lasting two months, GONE in 72 hours.  There are clinics all over the U.S. who offer IV administration of Vitamin C.  You will have to seek them out.  See reading list for references.

So how much Vitamin C do we humans need every day?  It varies from person to person.  This is what Andrew Saul has to say:

“You certainly would need more than the RDA because just about every animal on earth makes 10 or 15 times the amount of vitamin C in the RDA. So I would say you need at least 1,500 milligrams a day and that would be low. And I would recommend you take what a gorilla would get every day in their daily diet, around 4,000-4,500 milligrams of vitamin C a day.”

If you have the flu, then 2,000 mg every hour is recommended.  Seriously.  This can be incredibly helpful for lessening symptoms quickly and shortening the duration of the illness.

And what about our beloved animal companions?  Here is what Dr. Belfield writes:

 “In the wilds on his own, beyond the reach and ‘wisdom’ of food processors, the dog does indeed seek out vitamin C sources in his food.  He eats the ingested material of the prey, which is rich in Vitamin C.  He eats the liver where the ascorbic acid is produced, and the adrenal glands, a storehouse of vitamin C…  He eats it raw, while man gives it to him cooked.  Cooking destroys vitamin C.  In the wilds the dog also eats vegetables, fruit and berries, additional sources of vitamin C.  People say that the dog makes enough and doesn’t need more.  On his own, in nature, the dog acts like he needs more….  I believe that supplementation of vitamin C is perhaps the single most important thing you can do for the health of your pet.”

Lily & Chandra 814-2Thank you, Dr. Belfield!  Vitamin C has been super helpful for Lily and  Zandra.  Recommended dosage for animals under 20 pounds is 500 – 1,500 mg in divided doses throughout the day. Animals who weigh 20-50 pounds would receive 1,500 – 3,000 mg a day, 50-100 pound animals receive 3,000 – 6,000 mg per day, and animals over 100 pounds benefit from 6,000 – 7,500 mg per day in divided doses.  Puppies and kittens can receive pediatric vitamin C drops.

Vitamin C has helped  me measurably reduce and stave off inflammation, as well as resolve several other imbalances that used to show up on a regular basis (swollen ear lobes, swollen ankles, chronic neck pain).  Now if I have an inflammation flare up, it only lasts for one day, or half a day instead of weeks on end.  I can recover from a day of digging in the garden much more quickly now than when I was in my 40’s!

If you have chronic inflammation, are prone to catch colds, flu or respiratory infections, have been exposed to pesticides, herbicides or other toxins, or simply feel stressed and tired a lot of the time, perhaps it’s time to increase your daily or weekly intake by adding sodium ascorbate to your drinking water several times each week, or every day for a while.  I think you will notice an improvement in the way you feel.



Resources and Recommended Reading

Belfield, Wendell O., and Martin Zucker. How to Have a Healthier Dog: The Benefits of Vitamins and Minerals for Your Dog’s Life Cycles. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1981. Print.

Belfield, Wendell O., and Martin Zucker. The Very Healthy Cat Book: A Vitamin and Mineral Program for Optimal Feline Health. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1983. Print.

“ – How to Get a Vitamin C I.V. Ordered.” – How to Get a Vitamin C I.V. Ordered. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 May 2016.

“ Andrew Saul’s Natural Health Website.” Andrew Saul’s Natural Health Website. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Feb. 2014.

“Dr. Joel Wallach – The Best of Dead Doctors Don’t Lie.” YouTube. YouTube, 17 Aug. 2011. Web. 21 Feb. 2014.

Http:// “Lecture on Vitamin C by Brilliant Suzanne Humphries.” YouTube. YouTube, 03 Feb. 2015. Web. 16 May 2016.

Huggins, Hal, and Thomas E. Levy. Uninformed Consent the Hidden Dangers in Dental Care. Newburyport: Hampton Roads, 1999. Print.

“Intravenous Vitamin C and Cancer Boulder / Denver.” NatureMed Boulder. N.p., 01 Aug. 2013. Web. 16 May 2016.

Levy, Thomas E. Curing the Incurable: Vitamin C, Infectious Diseases, and Toxins. Henderson, NV: Livon, 2002. Print.

Levy, Thomas E. Primal Panacea. Henderson, NV: MedFox Pub., 2011. Print.

“List of Clinics in the United States Offering Alternative Therapies – Welcome To Cancer Cure Foundation.” List of Clinics in the United States Offering Alternative Therapies – Welcome To Cancer Cure Foundation. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 May 2016.

Pauling, Linus. How to Live Longer and Feel Better. New York: W.H. Freeman, 1986. Print.

Rogers, Sherry A. Detoxify or Die. Sarasota, FL: Sand Key, 2002. Print.

Smith, Lendon H. Feed Your Body Right: Understanding Your Individual Body Chemistry for Proper Nutrition without Guesswork. New York, NY: M. Evans, 1994. Print.

Smith, Lendon H. Feed Your Kids Right: Dr. Smith’s Program for Your Child’s Total Health. New York: McGraw Hill, 1979. Print.

Wallach, Joel D., and Ma Lan. Dead Doctors Don’t Lie. Franklin, TN: Legacy Communications Group, 1999. Print.

“Welcome To” Welcome To N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Feb. 2014.

About Sarah Wadleigh

I am a Clinical Herbalist, Organic Gardener and Nutritional Consultant for people and companion animals. I live in Madrid, New Mexico with my wonderful husband, two little dogs and a big cat. My practice revolves around helping people create health through whole-food nutrition, nutritive herbs, lifestyle and self-awareness. With more than 20 years of experience as an animal nutritional counselor, I offer consultations to improve the health and well-being of our four-legged friends, as well as their humans. We can work together via Skype, in person,or over the phone. Let's create health for ourselves and our animal companions! Contact:
This entry was posted in Book Reviews, Empowering Yourself Back to Health, Food Elimination, Food for Dogs & Cats, Health & Nutrition. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Vitamin C – The Untold Story

  1. Jane Anderson says:

    Fantastic Sarah! Thank you. I had forgotten the incredible healing powers of Vitamin C. I read a book a couple of years ago and wanted to incorporate more C into my life but never did it.
    It’s on my list next time I hit the natural foods store!

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