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Vitamin C: Who Needs It?

The author as contributed more than 500 articles to scientific journals in a distinguished fifty-year career. Many of his books deal with research into the medical uses of the ascorbates (vitamin C). Dr. Cheraskin is convinced that one cannot say too much in tribute to a substance that can work wonders for mankind if only the medical profession can be directed toward recognizing the "diamonds in their own backyard."

Soon our nation will be preoccupied with a dilemma, one that could have been avoided if prudent preventative medicine were practiced. Health Care, an enterprise that will cost billions of dollars, and engage the energies of millions of people to administer it, has never been criticized for putting the "wagon before the horse." Why deal with illness only after the fact -- when most of the diseases and disorders could have been prevented in the first place?

Dr. Cheraskin offers a partial solution: nutritional therapy with an emphasis on the ascorbates. Vitamin C has never been given a fair and honest evaluation by any medical group or government agency. His book is packed with scientific evidence, enough to persuade a reasonable person, that it may be too good to be true; however, truth if offered in abundance.

Cheraskin delves into tests that were conducted in 1976 to prove vitamin C can be a growth factor. By stimulating collagen synthesis, he contends, vitamin C can reverse stunted growth in children.

Back in 1941, researchers recognized that the concentration of vitamin C in the testicles was about 20 times higher than in the blood. Infertile males, he notes, were usually deficient in the vitamin. Seven years later, other investigators implicated the stickiness of sperm to be responsible for infertility. Cheraskin says both sperm count and sperm volume can be augmented by including vitamin C in the daily regimen.

Are genetic defects inevitably transmitted? How much genetic damage might take place during pregnancy? Cheraskin reminds us that studies conducted within the past few years in Brazil revealed that sperm DNA could be damaged in males when vitamin C levels were deficient.

In dealing with the "tired blood" syndrome, the author dredges up research performed in Nigeria that proved red blood cell count was linked with vitamin C intake.

Dr. Cheraskin honors his colleagues who have spent most of their lives investigating and recording the lifesaving wonders of vitamin C. He reminds us that Albert Szent-Gyorgi identified the substance that became vitamin C. He pays homage to Irwin Stone, the biochemist, who amassed worldwide proof of the vitamin's efficacy. Linus Pauling and Sherry Lewin, two great pioneers in ascorbate research, are hailed for their contributions. Future generations, and probably many readers of his book, will surely add Cheraskin to the pantheon of such pioneers.

Cheraskin has been considered a star among the researchers at the University of Alabama Medical Center and is acknowledged to have made great strides in establishing procedures for testing and evaluating vitamin C deficiencies. From this work, diabetologists, if they are so inclined, can treat diabetes with vitamin C to help correct faulty carbohydrate metabolism and its link to the disease.

Capillary health, achieved by enhancing the effect of vitamin C, is seldom mentioned in medical treatment. Cheraskin's book chronicles work performed successfully in that specialty.

For the skeptics, nothing can be as satisfying as hard statistics. Cheraskin provides them with evidence of vitamin C's effectiveness in preventing (and curing) scurvy, tobacco-induced deficiencies, liver health, kidney function, periodontal problems, eye disorders, bladder function, respiratory disorders and many forms of cancer.

The use of vitamin C in fighting the "disease of the century," acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) has shown encouraging results. Few, if any, funds have been direct toward vitamin C and AIDS research. Billions of dollars have already been squandered in researching deadly drugs, however.
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Publication:Nutrition Health Review
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Jun 22, 1993
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