What drug can be safer than vitamin C, you wonder? You might even be used to “snacking” on a container of the flavored tablets when you run out of candy. But do you know excessive vitamin C consumption can be dangerous?
Many people often forget that vitamin C tablets are drugs due to their sweet taste. Even though vitamin C has several healthy benefits in the body, it should still be consumed in moderation.
Vitamin C being a water soluble vitamin dissolves in water and is excreted in the urine. This means that unlike fat soluble vitamins, it does not get stored in the body.
At normal doses and relatively high doses, vitamin C is not toxic to the body. However, at excessively high doses, it can put one at risk of unwanted effects in the body.
Moderate Vitamin C Consumption
The healthy effects of vitamin C cannot be denied when consumed at the appropriate quantities.
It should also be noted that it is almost impossible to develop vitamin C toxicity if it is only being gotten from your diet.
The risk of vitamin C toxicity is likely when taking vitamin C supplements. The recommended daily for dose of vitamin C for adults is 2000mg (2g). This means that it is advised to not exceed this dose regularly to prevent experiencing unwanted effects.
Excessive Vitamin C consumption can cause Kidney stones
Vitamin C is converted to oxalate when being excreted in the urine. This oxalate can be further converted to calcium oxalate in the kidney which are responsible for about 70 to 80 percent of kidney stones!
People who take more than 2000mg of vitamin C per day ( 20 of the 100mg tablets) are especially at risk of developing kidney stones.
In rare instances, this can also result in kidney failure especially when there are other underlying kidney related diseases.
Excessive vitamin c consumption can cause digestive problems
You might not have noticed this but taking too much vitamin C especially as a supplement can result in a variety of digestive issues.
These can range from diarrhea to gastrointestinal discomfort and nausea. Also, vitamin C is acidic and can trigger the release of stomach acids. These stomach acids can cause gastrointestinal symptoms such as increased motility that results in diarrhea, acide reflux and pain.
You are more likely to suffer these side effects if you consume more than 2000mg of vitamin C at once.
Excessive vitamin c consumption can cause Iron toxicity
Vitamin c makes it easier for iron to be absorbed into the body. This means that anemic people (people with lower red blood cell levels) can take vitamin C alongside their iron supplements.
However, for people with adequate levels of iron, vitamin c can result in iron overload.
Iron is a trace element in the body. This means that it is only needed in small amounts and can be toxic in large amounts in the body. People who are already at risk of having iron accumulation in their body should take caution while using vitamin C supplements.
High levels of iron in the body can result in liver, heart, and thyroid damage. It can also cause considerable damage to the central nervous system.
A word from Healthfacts
It is advisable to maintain caution when ingesting any type of drug. Follow the recommended or prescribed doses to avoid developing unwanted effects. VItamin C is a drug and when using vitamin C supplements, ensure not to exceed 2000mg every day.