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Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid)

How does Vitamin C (ascorbic Acid) work?

Vitamin C is required for the proper development and function of many parts of the body. It also plays an important role in maintaining proper immune function.

Are there safety concerns?

Vitamin C is safe for most people when taken by mouth or applied to the skin. In some people, vitamin C might cause nausea, vomiting, heartburn, stomach cramps, headache, and other side effects. The chance of getting these side effects increases the more vitamin C you take. Doses higher than 2000 mg per day might not be safe and may cause a lot of side effects, including kidney stones and severe diarrhea. In people who have had a kidney stone, doses greater than 1000 mg per day greatly increase the risk of kidney stone recurrence.

Vitamin C is likely safe for pregnant or breast-feeding women when taken in the recommended amount of 120 mg per day. Taking too much vitamin C during pregnancy can cause problems for the newborn baby.

Do not take vitamin C in doses greater than those found in basic multivitamins if:
  • You have had a heart attack.
  • You have had angioplasty, a heart procedure.
  • You have cancer.
  • You have diabetes.
  • You have a blood-iron disorder, including conditions called "thalassemia" and "hemochromatosis."
  • You have kidney stones, or a history of kidney stones.
  • You have a metabolic deficiency called "glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency" (G6PDD).
  • You have a blood disorder called "sickle cell disease."

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.





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