Let's get right to the answer which is ----- NO! Ascorbic acid is not Vitamin C. Ascorbic acid is ascorbic acid, which is a fraction of the biologically utilizable Vitamin C complex.
The misunderstanding is due to the government because they decided that you rate any Vitamin C according to the amount of ascorbic acid that it contains. Ascorbic acid is really the anti-oxidant fraction of vitamin C, or in other words, it is the preservative part of the C complex.
The real Vitamin C complex contains the Vitamin P factors which are flavinoids and rutin. These substances maintain vascular integrity. Vascular integrity means that the strength and the inner lining of the arteries and veins remains optimum. Break down of the veins leads to those spider veins, or to varicose veins. Breakdown of the arterial lining leads to arteriosclerosis or to aneurysms (bulging of the artery). In Health Tip #3, I discussed a theory of heart disease (arteriosclerosis) as being not a problem of too much cholesterol, but rather a deficiency of the Vitamin C complex. People who are deficient in Vitamin C complex bruise easily or have "pink toothbrush" (bleeding gums).
Another part of the Vitamin C complex is Vitamin K. Vitamin K promotes prothrombin, a substance that helps blood to coagulate when you get cut. If your blood doesn't coagulate, then you are called a bleeder. Another factor in the C complex is the J factor which increases the oxygen carrying capacity of the blood. When you have a cold, oxygen in the blood will neutralize toxins as well as certain bacteria and viruses and help rid them from your system.
Another very important factor in the C complex is tyrosinase, which is an enzyme. This enzyme helps to activate the adrenal glands which among other things helps us handle stress. Research has shown that Vitamin C products which have the most turosinase produce the best clinical results.
You can see that to call ascorbic acid "Vitamin C" is like looking at your monitor and calling it a computer. The Vitamin C product that I use at the office is made by a company called Standard Process. They make a completely natural whole food concentrate from alfalfa, mushrooms, bone marrow and buckwheat leaf. What's interesting is that their 500 milligram tablet contains about 5 mg (milligrams) of ascorbic acid. That means that the other 495 milligrams are the other factors that I discussed above. It is the other factors that give this product it's functional potency. If you owned a baseball team, would you want to put just a bunch of pitchers out there (ascorbic acid), or would want to cover all your bases and the outfield (C complex)?
You might be thinking, "Does my Vitamin C do any good?" The answer is yes. What it does is keep your system acidic. Most people who get a cold are too alkaline, so ascorbic acid helps acidify your system so your body can fight off the infection. Germs thrive in alkaline environments.
Is that so-called "natural" Vitamin C on your shelf really natural? Probably not. Most Vitamin C on the market is synthetically produced from corn sugar (glucose), and even though it is synthetically manufactured, it is called "natural" and "organic" because corn sugar comes from corn and is found in nature, and of course anything containing carbon is organic. Therefore, the manufacturer can call it natural!!!
To conclude, the point of a completely natural Vitamin C complex is, in order to have the most potent and complete effect, you must have all the synergistic factors that are found in nature. To process these critical factors out leaves the average vitamin C product quite impotent in my opinion.
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