Ask Dr. Nandi: Fact check: Could taking vitamin C cure or prevent COVID-19?

Posted at 5:57 PM, Mar 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-28 08:44:00-04

(WXYZ) — Can vitamin C cure the coronavirus or even prevent you from getting it in the first place? Or is this another false claim that’s circulating on social media?

Unfortunately, this unfounded medical advice continues to make the rounds on social media. And I get it, people are anxious and frightened. So they’re trying to do what they can to keep themselves safe from the coronavirus.

But there is no science backing up the claim that high doses of Vitamin C can treat COVID-19. I believe this misinformation stems from past trials that had shown 200 mg or more of vitamin C helped reduce cold symptoms, making them less severe, as well as shortening the length of the cold.

But, let me tell you, the results were minimal. In adults, the cold was shortened by 8% and for kids, it was 14%.

What’s really important here is to not fall prey to unfounded medical claims or buy products that say Vitamin C will heal you or protect you from the coronavirus.

Researchers in China are looking at vitamin C. The study started in February and it’s expected to end in September.

But let me point out that they’re looking at vitamin C infusions and how it might help with severe acute respiratory infections in patients diagnosed with COVID-19. And just because it’s being studied, does not mean it will be effective when it comes to healing. In fact, researchers even noted that past studies have had different conclusions.

So this study might even reveal that Vitamin C has no effect on the coronavirus.

If you would like to take a vitamin C supplement, the recommended daily intake is 75 mg for women and 90 mg for men. It is not recommended that you take high doses of Vitamin C. Because it can actually be harmful.

You can end up with diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, headache and insomnia.

The highest daily intake recommended is 2,000 mg per day for an adult. But in my opinion, for most healthy folks, I recommend getting your nutrients from food. Food is medicine. And when you combine a nutritious balanced diet with exercise and the right amount of sleep, you are naturally boosting your immune system.

So in my opinion, that’s what we should focus on, along with washing your hands often, disinfecting commonly used surfaces, and staying 6 feet away from others.

ON THE NEXT ALL-NEW DR. NANDI SHOW, so you think acne and bad skin is only reserved for your teenage years? Right? Wrong! Join Dr. Partha Nandi as he talks with guests who attribute their bad skin in adulthood to what they eat and the products they use. Plus hear from twin brothers that are astro and geophysicists who developed a skincare line after watching their mom suffer from horrible rashes. And you won’t want to miss great skincare advice from "The Spa Doctor," Dr. Trevor Cates. Tune in this Sunday, March 29th at 1:30 pm for "Lotions, Potions & Miracles Creams: what are we doing to our skin?"

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