Vitamin C, or ascorbic acid, is one of the most essential forms of nutrients you need to function each day. Without it, your immune system would falter, as you would be unable to replenish the immune system cells you need to protect you from all sorts of infections. Additionally, Vitamin C is vital because brain function is dramatically altered depending on how much of it your body is able to absorb.
Humans, like other primates in general, are at a specific disadvantage when it comes to Vitamin C, as our bodies are unable to synthesise it from sugars such as glucose and galactose in the same way that most plants and animals can. This is because we have an in-built deficiency of an enzyme called L-gulonolactone oxdiase.
A lack of this enzyme means that, even though our bodies need Vitamin C to maintain an efficient immune system, we’re incapable of processing and storing it in our bodies naturally. We must therefore supplement our diets with additional Vitamin C to give it a fighting chance. Consumption of Vitamin C through traditional means risks having this essential vitamin being screened out by our bodies.
What is Liposomal Vitamin C?
Liposomal encapsulation technology (LET) offers an alternative. Liposomal Vitamin C supplements are a far more targeted means of boosting the absorption of Vitamin C through an incredibly ingenious method. Liposomal Vitamin C capsules use fatty particles containing high concentrations of sodium ascorbate to boost bioavailability of ascorbic acid entering your body. The ascorbic acid hitches a ride off the back of the fatty particles, as a form of high-dose Vitamin C supplement.
A paper published in the Nutrition and Metabolic Insights journal in 2016 noted that liposomal supplements “may hold promise”, claiming that while conventional drugs or supplements are often absorbed in a slow manner, liposomal supplements ensure a more accelerated rate of absorption into the intestinal tract. Vitamin C is typically transported through the body via the bloodstream, and oral delivery of Vitamin C in liposomal form boosts the concentration of ascorbic acid in the blood to a greater extent than does unencapsulated Vitamin C.
Lecithin is a naturally-occurring amphiphilic agent we include in our liposomal supplements. We use a variant of lecithin called phosphatidylcholine, sourced from sunflowers, because it is capable of acting as a form of molecular emulsifier. Lecithin increases the likelihood of your body being able to absorb the Vitamin C contained within the liposomes.
The lipid bubbles in liposomal supplements need some sort of catalyst to aid absorption into your body, as fat or oil-based chains of amino acids such as those found in lipids tend to be averse to being soluble in water. Scientists call lipids hydrophobic as a result. What sunflower lecithin does is convert these lipid bubbles into hydrophilic ones.
Why lecithin? Quite simply, lecithin is found in great abundance in animal and plant tissue to begin with. In actual fact, there’s lecithin in every cell in your body. You need lecithin to aid with healthy brain function. It is especially important in regulating your metabolism and creating specific neurotransmitters. Not only that, but lecithin is needed to preserve the integrity of the very membranes that make up each cell in your body.
Fresh Healthcare is pleased to announce a Liposomal Vitamin C supplement of its very own. Our liposomal supplement is vegan-friendly and can serve as an effective addition to your diet. It is high-strength, intended to work as a supportive supplement for your immune health while also helping boost secretion of collagen - an essential protein. Not only that, but our supplement also possesses powerful antioxidant properties, designed to halt the damage caused by free radicals.
Let’s learn more about precisely why liposomal Vitamin C is the must-have health supplement to add to your shopping list today ...
Supports Immune Health
Millions of years have given Mother Nature plenty of time to produce a large number of nasty bacterial and viral infections, which can do great harm to organisms. As with many things in nature, there is a clear balance: the human body is home to a number of bacterial cultures that do you a lot of good, especially in aiding digestion.
Unfortunately, there are also a number of ‘bad’ bacteria, which have more of a parasitic tendency, making them pathogenic, prone to causing disease.
Bacteria are some of the oldest life forms on Earth, billions of years in the making. The pathogenic forms of bacteria do harm to living organisms, producing toxins as they multiply, damaging the tissues that make up our bodies.
Viruses, on the other hand, are something of an oddity. It is believed that viruses have existed for as long as cells have been evolving. The precise origins of viruses are unclear, as there would be no fossils of them to show how they have evolved over millions of years because they are so small.
Some scientists debate about whether viruses even count as a life form. They share some characteristics with living organisms, such as reproduction, as they possess RNA and DNA to create copies of themselves. However, they lack cell walls. Individual viral particles, or virions, have a specific function, which is to spread genetic information from host cell to host cell, allowing them to multiply at an exponential pace. They straddle the line between living and inert, described as ‘organisms at the edge of life’ by an article published in the 2017 edition of the Studies in History and Philosophy of Science journal.
Viruses do their own damage to the human body by latching on to healthy cells, breaking into their cores and corrupting them. Viruses hijack the nucleus of a cell, forcing it to produce more virions, until the cell wall is unable to withstand the pressure. The cell wall ruptures, killing it and allowing virions to spread, which go on to seek out new cells to latch on to, and so the cycle continues.
COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, is responsible for over 1.5 million infections worldwide at the time of writing. The novel coronavirus’s virions are spherical and appear to have a corona, a crown-like array of spikes, which they use to latch onto host cells. The virus which ultimately causes COVID-19 is described as a “novel” virus, as human beings have never encountered it. After coexisting for years, humans have now been exposed to COVID-19, and it remains to be seen how we will interact with this new viral infection in our midst.
While our Liposomal Vitamin C supplement is unable able to actually cure or prevent any viral or bacterial infection in and of itself, it is definitely an effective way of bolstering your body’s defence systems so you’re ready for anything.
According to a 2017 article in Nutrients journal, Vitamin C has a decisive role in helping prevent, shorten or alleviate a number of infectious diseases in animals, including humans. For example, the common cold, a strain of rhinovirus, can have its symptoms alleviated through consumption of Vitamin C.
The study also found that ascorbic acid can have a profound impact in helping people cope with pneumonia, in which lung tissue is inflamed, usually because of bacterial infections. This was based on a number of controlled trials, all exploring its impact on patients with respiratory infections.
Vitamin C is particularly useful in enhancing a process called phagocytosis, in which white blood cells are able to ingest and break down bacterial and viral particles in the body so they can do no further damage to healthy tissue. Not only that, but Vitamin C is proven to help increase production of B and T-cells, variants of white blood cell. B-cells produce antibodies to neutralise alien invaders to your body such as viruses or bacteria. Some T-cells produce cytokines to induce a response from killer white blood cells, while others produce toxins to kill off infected cells.
Once activated during an infection, B and T-cells are able to start generating ‘memory cells’, useful markers which “remember” specific strains of infection they have previously encountered. These memory cells are able to remain active for much of a person’s lifetime, helping them develop immunity to the pathogen, if it should ever be detected in the body at some point in the future.
Vitamin C and Iron Intake Improvements
Think of your body as a machine. Many machines require a steady supply of oil to keep the components functioning efficiently. Without some form of lubrication, the machine starts to be unable to move so easily. In the same vein, without a sustained supply of oxygen from your bloodstream, your body loses some of its ability to function properly.
In order to survive, you need a steady supply of iron in your body. This is because your red blood cells use a protein called haemoglobin to carry oxygen from the lungs to the rest of your body. Haemoglobin is the protein that gives red blood cells their eponymous colour. The lungs transfer oxygen into the red blood cells through their thin alveolar cell walls. Lung tissue is dotted with thin-walled blood vessels called capillaries, which allow oxygen to pass to and fro. Red blood cells passing the cell walls of the lungs pick up a steady supply of oxygen thanks to haemoglobin, and are then pumped into larger blood vessels and on into the rest of the body, offloading oxygen where it’s needed.
Iron is a core component of haemoglobin. A chronic lack of oxygenated blood in your bloodstream results in a condition called iron deficiency anaemia, the key symptoms of which include difficulty in catching your breath and intense fatigue, due to your muscles being unable to draw enough oxygen via the bloodstream. Fortunately, there is a way to ensure that iron can be absorbed efficiently to stave off this condition.
Vitamin C is capable of boosting iron absorption, helping raise the amount of haemoglobin you can produce, as it is proven to boost the bioavailability of iron from the food we eat.
In 1989, the International Journal for Vitamin and Nutrition Research asserted that much of the iron we consume is absorbed from foods such as meat and fish. Ascorbic acid is essential in ensuring that there is minimal formation of what are termed insoluble and unabsorbable iron compounds.
Ascorbic acid is also required to make sure that ferric iron is reduced to ferrous iron. This is crucial, as ferrous iron is far more likely to be absorbed into mucosal cells and thereby ensure far greater uptake of iron overall. A Vitamin C supplement can be useful in helping ensure that your body gets all the iron it needs to stave off iron deficiency anaemia, especially if you have a vigorous fitness regime in place, as this often involves long periods where you need plenty of oxygen in your body, to prevent lactic acid build-up.
To get the iron you need, it’s important to ensure you have a well-balanced diet, with a sufficient amount of iron. Too little and you become iron-deficient. On the other hand, too much iron in your diet could result in a condition called haemochromatosis. To get the most out of your Liposomal Vitamin C supplement when it comes to iron absorption, always check you have the diet to match.
Vitamin C Benefits for Skin
We hear a lot about the importance of getting plenty of Vitamin D from sunlight to make sure we maintain healthier skin, but what about topping up on Vitamin C as well?
Skin cells are some of the most short-lived cells in your body. The typical skin cell has a lifespan of just four weeks. When it dies, it is ultimately shed and replaced by a younger, healthier cell, which grows underneath. This rapid life cycle makes it important to keep on top of maintaining healthy skin, especially because there are so many things in our environment that can get in the way of that.
Free radicals, environmental pollution and excessive exposure to ultraviolet radiation from sunlight can all do great damage to the skin if left unchecked. Luckily, Vitamin C is well known as an effective antioxidant, ideal for neutralising free radical damage and limiting the amount of oxidative stress they can exert on skin cells.
An article featured in the Nutrients journal in 2017 referred to the way that Vitamin C can also inhibit a process called melanogenesis, in which exposure to ultraviolet light causes a substance called melanin to be secreted. Melanin is supposed to protect the hypodermis, but overproduction by way of melanogenesis can lead to discolouration of skin.
This hyperpigmentation results in an uneven skin tone and a high volume of moles and spots. Vitamin C keeps melanogenesis in check as it disrupts a rate-limiting enzyme called tyrosinase, which is required during melanogenesis.
As mentioned, skin cells are shed at a rapid rate, and skin is especially one of the body’s most vulnerable organs. It is common for you to sustain wounds in day-to-day life. It has been scientifically proven that Vitamin C plays a role in helping boost the growth and migration of dermal fibroblasts, which is incredibly important when your body is trying to heal damage to the skin itself. While it remains unclear exactly how Vitamin C helps in this way, it is clear that it may help influence the gene expression of enzymes with antioxidant properties, including those needed for DNA repair.
Fresh Healthcare’s very own Liposomal Vitamin C supplement is ideal for maintaining healthy skin. It provides a healthy dose of the antioxidants needed to protect skin cells from the free radicals that are generated from natural metabolic processes. It can also help ensure a more even complexion by keeping the excessive melanogenesis caused by ultraviolet radiation at bay.
Vitamin C and Collagen Production
One of the other properties inherent in Vitamin C is its ability to boost the production of collagen, one of the most abundant proteins in nature. Collagen serves as the basis for much of the body’s connective tissue, including the muscles, tendons, skin, hair, bones and internal organs.
Derived from the Greek word for glue, collagen is essential for keeping bodily tissues firm and strong. Collagen keeps skin flexible and stretchy and helps ensure that muscles and bones are as dense as they need to be. However, there is only so much collagen your body can produce in a lifetime. As we age, collagen secretion begins to drop off, causing skin to lose that flexibility. Wrinkles are a telltale sign of ageing, as the skin cells lack that tautness they once held.
Lower levels of collagen also result in muscles becoming less dense, making it harder to exert pressure on your body over time. Bones also lose their density, which is why the elderly are more prone to breaking bones, as they have simply got less collagen to reinforce them.
Ageing is a natural organic process that we can’t reverse, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a way to slow down its effects. Not only is our Liposomal Vitamin C supplement great at protecting your immune health and helping you maintain healthier skin, but it is also a handy way of giving your body that much-needed top-up of collagen over time.
High-dose Vitamin C supplements such as those provided by Fresh Healthcare are just what your body needs. Research has proven that Vitamin C can help heal bone fractures. Rather than thinking of bone as inert, consider your skeleton very much a living part of you. Bone is one of the more resilient parts of the body because it’s densely packed with collagen and strengthened by calcium phosphate.
Bones are constantly going through phases of growth. While the calcium phosphate keeps bones solid, collagen keeps them pliable, ensuring they are able to withstand stress without snapping altogether. Your bones can’t withstand all pressures - most of us have broken a bone at some point or another - but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a way to make them mend faster if a break does occur.
A paper published in the Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine in 2018 concluded that Vitamin C could play a considerable role in helping boost the synthesis of collagen, as well as accelerating the healing of soft tissues. Preclinical studies have shown how supplementation of Vitamin C is able to boost the creation of collagen Type I in the bodies of people with bone, tendon and ligament injuries. This is a highly promising discovery, as collagen Type I is precisely the form of this protein that helps knit these three types of tissue together.
The paper concluded that orally administered Vitamin C could have the potential to accelerate bone healing after a fracture, suggesting it would be wise for people to consider adding a Vitamin C liposomal supplement to their diets to aid their recovery. Once broken, bones are never quite as resilient as they once were; but while no supplement can completely reverse the damage done to fractured bones, the inherent collagen-boosting properties of Vitamin C are not to be ignored.
Signs of Vitamin C Deficiency
Much of the time, we worry about missing out on eating our five-a-day, and not getting all the vitamins and minerals we need to enjoy long, healthy lives. If you’re ever curious to know whether you’re getting as much Vitamin C as you should be, it may be time to look at what it means to be deficient in Vitamin C, and what you could do to try and turn things around.
Hundreds of years ago, the typical diet was far less likely to be considered well-balanced than today, and less likely to include fruits and vegetables containing Vitamin C, such as citrus fruits. As far back as the ancient Greek era, Hippocrates wrote of a disease that future generations would come to call scurvy. Over the centuries, countless generations discovered, forgot then discovered again the benefits of including Vitamin C-rich foods in their diets, keeping scurvy at bay.
If you were to talk about scurvy with a doctor, they might refer to the disease by its scientific name, Moeller’s Disease, or hypoascorbemia. A common symptom of Vitamin C deficiency is the pronounced redness of the parts of your gums, situated between your teeth. But gum disease is just one of the many maladies associated with being Vitamin C-deficient.
All it takes is one month for symptoms to occur, if you start to have a diet with little to no Vitamin C in it. Gum disease, as indicated above is just one tell-tale sign of hypoascorbemia. A general sense of tiredness can start to become common, with sore joints, mood swings and an inability for wounds to heal properly. Not only that, but the number of red blood cells, which you need to carry oxygen around your body, will also start to decrease.
If left untreated, your body would be unable to fend off basic infections resulting from having a compromised immune system, or from issues such as excessive bleeding. Fortunately, unlike pirates in the days of old, a well-balanced modern diet can give you plenty of different foods containing Vitamin C.
The National Institutes of Health claims that the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) of Vitamin C must be 85mg for a pregnant woman and 120mg per day when she begins to lactate. Children aged up to six months require at least 40mg of Vitamin C daily because they are undergoing a rapid phase of growth and need to develop a healthy immune system.
The Vitamin C RDA drops to just 15mg a day for someone aged one to three years old, before gradually increasing to as much as 75-90mg a day for individuals aged 19 and over. The NIH adds that a smoker must consider adding as much as 35mg of additional Vitamin C to their diet compared to non-smokers because of the damage they are inflicting on their overall health.