Ascorbic Acid (Vit.C)
Type of test: In-House
Offered by: Family Naturopathic Clinic
Ascorbic acid (vitamin C) is essential for activation of detoxifying enzymes in the liver, antioxidation in general, interception and destruction of free radicals, preservation and restoration of the antioxidant potential of vitamin E, and blockage of the formation of carcinogenic nitrosamines. In addition, vitamin C appears to function in a variety of other metabolic processes in which its role has not been well characterized.
Prolonged deficiency of vitamin C leads to the development of scurvy, a disease characterized by an inability to form adequate intercellular substance in connective tissues. This results in the formation of swollen, ulcerative lesions in the gums, mouth, and other tissues that are structurally weakened. Early symptoms may include weakness, easy fatigue and listlessness, as well as shortness of breath and aching joints, bones, and muscles.
The need for vitamin C can be increased by the use of aspirin, oral contraceptives, tetracycline, and a variety of other medications. Psychological stress and advancing age also tend to increase the need for vitamin C. Among the elderly, lack of fresh fruit and vegetables often adds vitamin C depletion to the inherently increased need, with development of near-scurvy status