When I was a kid, if I got a cold my mom gave me vitamin C tablets for a few days. After all, since 1970, when Nobel-Prize winning chemist Linus Pauling wrote his popular book Vitamin C and the Common Cold, many people believed that this antioxidant cured colds.

Of course, this hasn’t stood up to science, based on a 2007 review of decades of research. But that review also found that daily vitamin C supplements may shorten the duration of cold symptoms. And when freelance writer Lindsay Borthwick dug deep into this subject for our story about Vitamin C in the most recent issue of Best Health (the January/February issue is on newsstands now), and spoke to leading experts, she found that in fact Vitamin C, or ascorbic acid, has many other benefits on top of that.

It’s important for the immune system, aids in the absorption of iron and may help in the metabolism of cholesterol and the production of certain brain chemicals.

But wait — there’s more: Science is showing it could help prevent stroke, lower the risk of breast cancer (and maybe even treat cancer), improve mood, treat bacterial vaginosis (which affects some 10 per cent of women and 30 per cent of pregnant women) and even improve skin and signs of aging when applied topically.

 

For more details, check out the whole story (which includes the best food sources for Vitamin C, and how much C we should be getting daily), and speak to your doctor about how you might benefit.

• To claim your free issue of Best Health, go to besthealthmag.ca/metronews

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