We all know, Vitamins are the most essential nutrients for our body. Vitamins are broadly classified as water-soluble and fat-soluble Vitamins. There are 13 Vitamins in all and each one carries out critical functions keeping us to stay alive and Vitamin C is one of them that helps in performing the various functions in our body.
Actually, Vitamin C is involved in the production of neurotransmitters like serotonin and norepinephrine. The most important function of Vitamin C is that it acts as an antioxidant and boosts the immune system to fight from various diseases.
To avoid getting infected with COVID-19 like viruses, people increased the intake of Vitamin C into their diet. But do you know taking too much Vitamin C has side effects? Yes excessive intake of Vitamin C is not good for your health.
Symptoms of Too Much Vitamin C in the Body
When you take any supplement usually the full amount is not absorbed into your body. And it is believed that in lower doses about 70-90% absorption occurs while in mega doses of 1g and above only 50% is absorbed. And the excessive amount leftover in the GI tract may irritate the system leading to symptoms like:
Symptoms of Excess Vitamin C:
- Abdominal cramps
- Heartburn or Acid Reflux
Overdose on Vitamin C symptoms can help you to control the cut the intake of this nutrition. If you not control the same it will negatively affect your body. Hence, you also need to know the side effects of too much vitamin C discussed below.
Side Effects of Taking Too Much Vitamin C
Absorption of Other Nutrients
Excessive Vitamin C may interfere with the absorption of other essential nutrients like Vitamin B12. However, if you need both, it is advised that if you are taking both these vitamin supplements, you should keep about 2 hours of gap between them. Vitamin C has also found to decrease the uptake of Copper in the body.
Affecting the Health of Bones
Vitamin C is important for collagen formation, which is essential to keep your bones healthy, and several research and studies have shown it beneficial for keeping bone and joint diseases away.
While high levels of Vitamin C in our body may lead to the activation of a protein that causes painful bone spurs (bony projections that develop along bone edges especially at the joints). High intakes of Vitamin C over long periods of time may lead to the acceleration of painful osteoarthritis.
Chances of Kidney Stones
Excessive Vitamin C leads to excretion as oxalate from our body through your urine. And sometimes this oxalate binds to other minerals forming crystals that may lead to stones in the kidneys.
As Vitamin C is responsible for increasing the oxalate formation, excessive intake has been found to be linked to kidney stones. And few studies have shown high Vitamin C intakes to be linked to kidney failure, though in very rare cases only.
May Rust Your Body
As per the research and studies carried out by the scholars of the University of Florida, if you had an injury, sprain or inflammation, and were taking more than 100 mg of Vitamin C/day, you may be rusting your body from the inside.
And the assumption was that all these conditions lead to free iron within the body which reacts negatively with Vitamin C causing a reaction like the rusting of an iron rod when exposed to water and oxygen. So even though Vitamin C helps lower inflammation and hasten to heal, taking the right amount is recommended.
Recommended Daily Dose of Vitamin C (ICMR/NIN)
To avoid such complications due to overdose of Vitamin C, you need to control the intake of Vitamin supplements. And as per the different genders and ages, the upper limit of Vitamin C is recommended according to the Office of Dietary Supplements – the USA.
- Infants: 400mg/day
- Children 4-8 Years: 650mg
- 9-13 Years: 1200mg
- 14-17 Years: 1800mg
- Adults: 2000mg/day
- Pregnant and Lactating mothers: 1800mg/day
Recommended Daily Intake Of Vitamin C (ICMR/NIN) for The Indian Population:
- Adult Man: 40mg/day
- Adult woman: 40mg /day
- Children: 0-1 year: 25mg & 1-17 years: 40mg
- Pregnant and lactating mothers: 60-80mg/day
If you are regularly taking citrus fruits, peppers, tomato, papaya, green chutney, amla and green leafy vegetables your body will get adequate Vitamin C. Supplementation should be done only when you are under doctor’s medication supervision.