Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid or ascorbate, is a common natural chemical produced by a wide variety of plants. Foods quite notably present in the cognitive sets of the public regarding vitamin C presence are citrus fruits. And, thus vitamin C can be confused with citric acid. Although citric acid is quite similar; only a differing from ascorbic acid by one oxygen molecule, citric acid is technically not ascorbic acid. So, you may not be getting much actual vitamin C from your soda! But, the question remains: “is vitamin C good for a yeast infection?” The answer is “yes,” vitamin C is an effective inhibitor of Candida yeast. Just a few milligrams of vitamin C is enough to inhibit the growth of Candida yeast. A caveat to remember is this figure is not the oral dose taken, rather it relates to the actual concentration of vitamin C in contact with Candida. So, in general you will need to apply vitamin C topically to the site of the yeast infection to see results. A concentration of about 25% vitamin C (which is close to 250 mg / mL) should be sufficient to terminate nearly all yeast growth.
It is good to remember that the body naturally filters out excess vitamin C from the blood. Due to the renal cleansing of the blood and the maximum saturation of vitamin C the blood can handle, it is hard to have too much of this acid present in circulation. Also, as you increase the oral dose of vitamin C you take, the body takes in less and less of this vitamin. So, vitamin C taken orally may not be capable of ameliorating a yeast infection on its own. But, taking a good dose of vitamin C daily may help to acidify the vaginal tissues and promote the development of acid preferring probiotic Lactobacillus; which normally dominate the microflora of a healthy vagina.
There are other benefits to taking a daily dose of vitamin C; such as this vitamin’s ability to help collagen synthesis. Louise Tenney M.H., in her book Candida Albicans: A Nutritional Approach, recommends taking a daily dose of vitamin C along with bioflavonoids. Tenney states that vitamin C helps to strengthen body tissues and promotes the expulsion of toxins. So, although the effect of using this supplement is not exactly potent to cure a yeast infection; it may help prevent them to some degree. Your best bet is to create a mixture of vitamin C with a antifungal medium of some kind--such as coconut oil. Remember, you will need to keep the amount of vitamin C at about 20% of the total volume of the mixture. And, you may want to do a patch test of a tiny amount of the mixture on skin that isn’t sensitive to see just how your skin will react to what you create. You can also look around for vitamin C suppositories of some kind to use intravaginally. Consequently, taking a high dose of vitamin C orally every 24 hours may not assure you will have any less yeast infections. There are often other issues to address besides a single vitamin deficiency when it comes to this all too common health concern.
Vitamin C and Candida Research Findings
One powerful research effort found that ascorbic acid certainly does intensely inhibit the development of Candida albicans. This research was published in The Pharma Innovation [2.4 (2013)]. The study focused on the biofilm formation of various pathogens: Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus faecalis, Streptococcus mutans, Porphyromonas gingivalis, and of course Candida albicans. These microorganisms were also analyzed in the presence of ascorbic acid at intervals of 1 through 20 mg / mL concentrations of ascorbic acid. Arriving at the minimum inhibitory concentration of ascorbate for these bacteria and fungus was done by inoculating cultures of these potentially harmful microbes with the aforementioned levels of ascorbate and letting them develop for 24 hours at 37°C. This test was done in triplicate to ensure the accuracy of the experiment. The study found that all the microorganisms’ growth was inhibited by 90% in the presence of 20 mg / mL of ascorbate--as compared to the control culture, which had zero ascorbate in it. The study also used 1.2 mg / mL of chlorhexidine and this chemical produced an 80% reduction in the amount of bacteria. The chart below, taken from the study, shows the inhibition of the various germs:
Chart Caption: This chart shows the antimicrobial activity of vitamin C against oral microbes. For a positive inhibition control, 1.2 mg / mL chlorhexidine was utilized. Ascorbic acid was employed in concentrations of 1, 5, 10, 15 and 20 mg / mL. All experiments were done by triplicate to assess the veracity of results.
Concerning the ability of vitamin C to stop the development of biofilm, this study found a very small amount of ascorbic acid radically reduced the ability of Candida albicans to produce a biofilm. The picture below was taken from the study and shows how ascorbic acid halted the development of biofilm by Candida albicans and also Staphylococcus aureus. The images on the far left are the control, where no ascorbic acid was present, the middle images show those germs in the presence of ascorbic acid; and, the images on the far right show the germs in the presence of chlorhexidine. The entire image below was created from two sets of images in the study (one set showing Candida albicans and the other set Staphylococcus aureus) illustrating how these germs responded to the aforementioned substances.
Another interesting study, looking at how vitamin C would affect the growth of Candida albicans, was published in the International Journal of Microbiology Research [1.1 (2009): 19]. The study used varying concentrations of ascorbic acid, between 10 and 250 mg, and analyzed the results these levels of this antioxidant had on the yeast. The authors of the study also stated that yeast infections tend to result less frequently in individuals who have undergone antibiotic therapy when these people are also given bowel tolerant doses of vitamin C simultaneously with the antibiotics. Additionally, the authors also relate that ascorbate allows for an acidic environment for Lactobacillus bacteria--which the authors state are natural Candida fighters. Lactobacillus develops well in an acidic milieu; and can benefit from vitamin C. The study also referenced a 2004 British Journal of Nutrition study (which we will discuss shortly) that cited vitamin C deficiency, antibiotic therapy, and poor oral hygiene as the most important independent risk factors correlated with topical yeast infections.
The study found that concentrations of 50 to 100 mg / mL of vitamin C did little to hinder the growth of Candida albicans. As the concentrations of ascorbic acid was increased to 125 mg / mL, it appears that a “critical mass,” so to speak, had been reached; and, growth of the yeast at this concentration was drastically reduced. At concentrations of ascorbate above 150 mg / mL, there was minimal growth of the yeast. Thus, a 250 mg / mL concentration will have a very profound affect on the ability of Candida to proliferate and produce infection.
Concerning the yeast’s production of proteinase (an enzyme that dissolves protein and is responsible for Candida’s erosion of various tissues and penetration into the vaginal and intestinal epithelial layers), the study found that 250 mg / mL of ascorbic acid was able to reduce the proteinase activity of the yeast by 42.43%. Thus, the study indicates that vitamin C can clearly hinder the growth of Candida and lessen this pathogen’s intrusion into the body via proteinase. The chart below was taken from this study and illustrates the growth rate of the Candida strain used by the study in the presence of varying concentrations of vitamin C.
Caption: Growth curve in presence of varying concentrations of Ascorbic acid
The next study we will examine was published in the British Journal of Nutrition [92.05 (2004): 861-867]. The study’s primary focus was to determine the effect of nutritional deficiency on the prevalence of oral thrush infection. The research was done with 97 hospitalized older adults with an age of around 82 years. The study found, through multivariate analysis, that patients with a vitamin C deficiency were close to 4 times as likely to develop oral thrush; with an odds ratio of 33 to 8. Poor oral hygiene was found to be slightly more conducive to the development of oral thrush. Yet, having a treatment with antibiotics was far and away the most powerful risk factor for these older individuals developing oral Candidiasis. There was close to a 15 times greater chance of an individual developing oral Candidiasis due to antibiotic therapy. The study concluded by stating the research helped to demonstrate the importance of mineral, vitamin, and protein supplementation in these older adults. In addition to vitamin C, the study also suggests that zinc (Zn) depletion may also put the body at risk for developing Candidiasis; the authors state the following relating to zinc:
One-third of our population had low serum Zn levels. The correlation of Zn levels with inflammatory proteins, together with abnormal values of these proteins in our population, suggests that the poor Zn status observed in some of our patients may be explained by a recent acute illness, as for vitamin C status. Moreover, this was not compensated by an adequate protein intake. Our finding that Zn depletion placed patients at an increased risk of candidiasis is in line with the recognised role of Zn in resistance to infection.
Another interesting study, although seemingly quite specious regarding its portrayal of vitamin C’s antifungal ability, was published in the Food Chemistry [133.3 (2012): 1001-1005]. The study evaluated the antifungal ability of ascorbic acid, curcumin, and the combination of curcumin and ascorbic acid. And, two species of yeast were used in the study to make this evaluation: Candida albicans and Candida tropicalis. The primary reason this research shows vitamin C in a bad light is due to the fact an outrageously small amount of vitamin C was used in the tests against Candida. By using such low amounts of vitamin C in the experiments, what exactly did the authors of the study expect to see? Yet, surprisingly, small amounts of curcumin did have a potent antifungal effect. And, when curcumin and vitamin C were used in tandem, the combination demonstrated even better antimycotic ability against Candida than either single substance.
Concerning curcumin and ascorbic acid, the researchers incubated ascorbic acid, curcumin, and a mixture of these two compounds for 24 hours at 37°C; and, cultures were done in triplicate. The aforementioned Candida species were the two species examined against these natural compounds. Seemingly the highest amount of ascorbic acid used to evaluate this compound’s mycotic inhibition potential was 250 micrograms per milliliter. A page at Ohio State University that talks about solution concentration (check it out here) makes it clear that a 20 mg / mL concentration is the same as a 2% concentration. Now, micrograms are much smaller than milligrams. One microgram is 0.001 milligrams (or, you can think of it as there are 1000 micrograms in each milligram); thus, 250 micrograms can also be stated as 0.25 milligrams. Given this, it is clear the study used about a 0.025% concentration of vitamin C to test for the inhibitory ability of vitamin C. As you can see, this tiny concentration is so small it makes you wonder why the researchers even bothered to test so obscure of an amount of ascorbic acid.
The study states that ascorbic acid was not found to inhibit the development of Candida; but curcumin did generally inhibit the development of Candida species at very low concentrations--just 3 mcg of curcumin was found to radically inhibit Candida. And, when a small amount of vitamin C was mixed with curcumin, this mixture had an even greater effect on the growth of Candida. So, we can see that using curcumin and vitamin C at the same time can produce much stronger salubrious results than using either natural remedy alone. And, if the study found such a strong growth inhibition of tiny amounts of ascorbic acid and curmin together, imagine what the results will be when both of these chemicals are used at higher doses! The following chart was taken from the study and shows how vitamin C and curcumin impacted Candida albicans after 24 hours of incubation. Please note that micrograms are stated in the chart by “µg.” The authors state that the “Combination of curcumin + ascorbic acid was significantly different from all other groups.”
The General Peculiarity of Relevant Research
As I have seen in various journal publications, there seems to be a common denominator in nearly all research papers regarding natural substances that inhibit or kill Candida. Namely, these papers all seem to use miniscule amounts of a natural substance when higher amounts of these various natural items can be more than safe to use. And, practically, a women with a vaginal yeast infection; or, a man with a penile yeast infection, is apt to use a logical, significantly higher amount of the herb, essential oil, or extract when they attempt to heal their infection. Thus, it seems that researchers as a whole tend to downplay the efficacy of natural remedies via their unusual use of tiny concentrations of a substance. And, there seems to be no end to the papers and expositions touting the amazing ability of harsh, dangerous, synthetic antimycotic drugs. No wonder, as these artificial chemicals can be patented by large drug companies that lose money when a woman or a man with a yeast infection chooses one of nature’s solutions over their synthetic azole drugs.
If you take a tour around Candida Hub you will see many studies that illustrate the efficacy of natural substances; and, you can see in nearly all of them, these substances were used in radically small amounts in the experiments discussed by these research papers. This just seems to point all to clearly to researcher’s general bias against natural medicine. As many women and men can attest to, synthetic antimycotic drugs often do not work well at all. And, those who use such popular prescription drugs often find themselves in a nonstop cycle of infection, remission, and recurrence. Clearly, it seems many are being exploited into an endless cycle for the profiteering of drug manufacturers. Just take some time to find out the concentration of a substance as a percentage when it is stated in an esoteric way. Doing this should help you to more vividly conceptualize how much of an herb or essential oil is actually being employed in a given experimental setting.
Natural Sources of Vitamin C
One very powerful utility offered for free online by the United States Department of Agriculture is a database that lists various nutrition qualities of a wide array of foods. You can use the USDA Food Composition Databases to search for foods by different nutrients. And, vitamin C content can be chosen as a search parameter! To do this simply visit the USDA’s nutrient list food database. Below are listed some natural foods that are very high in vitamin C that you can consider as additions to your diet in an effort to help your struggle against yeast.
Raw Acerola Juice
Acerola is the most common name for Malpighia glabra L., formerly called Malpighia punicifolia. Acerola is also known as the Puerto Rican, West Indian, or Barbados cherry. The acerola is a small tree that can grow up to 20 feet in height. This plant is indigenous of the Lesser Antilles, northern South America, and Brazil. This plant is speculated to have been introduced to America by being brought to Florida due to it appearing in the Royal Palm Nursery catalog for 1887 to 1888. Despite this plant’s fruit being typically referred to as a cherry, the taste and smell of cooked acerola is more similar to tart apples than cherries. Malic acid, a primary acid found in apples, is also present in acerola. Most of this cherry’s edible mass is comprised by about 90% moisture and the remaining amount is mostly made up of carbohydrates. Concerning the amount of vitamin C, the primary characteristic we are looking at, raw acerola juice has about 3,800 mg of vitamin C in each cup of this juice. For comparison, raw orange juice has only about 120 mg of vitamin C in each cup of this juice.
Wild Rose Hips
Known by the scientific name Rosa pratincola Greene, wild rose hips are occasionally called simply rose hips or rose berries. Wild rose hips have been used for food and as a natural medicine for various stomach and eye maladies. When these berries are dried they tend to keep very well and the dry berries can be utilized in the winter. These berries can be strained to take out the seeds and hairs, and after cleaned, can be used to make a tea. Unlike regular teas, rose hips need to be boiled for approximately ten minutes in order to create a strong enough tea. You will need to use about 2 tablespoons of these berries for every pint of water used. If you try and purchase wild rose hips, you may find only the dried shell of the berries; in such cases the vitamin C content may not be as abundant; and, you will need to boil berries in that condition for about 15 minutes to make a tea. Concerning the vitamin C present in wild rose hips, there is around 425 mg of vitamin C in a cup of these berries. About 300 more milligrams of vitamin C than what is present in a typical glass of raw orange juice.
Getting the Appropriate Vitamin C Dosage
According to the U.S. National Institute of Health’s Office of Dietary Supplements, the recommended daily dosage for vitamin C is different for different people. The suggested daily dose for adult males is 90 mg; and, the suggested daily dose for adult females that are not pregnant or breastfeeding is 75 mg. It is also suggested that adults not exceed taking 2,000 mg of ascorbate per day. It is also cautioned that high doses of vitamin C can cause diarrhea.
But, what about taking doses of vitamin C higher than the recommended daily dose? According to a study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal [164.3 (2001): 353-355], the dosage level of vitamin C is inversely correlated with the bioavailability of the dose. According to the study, the median bioavailability of an oral dose of 30 mg is 87%. The bioavailability for a 200 mg dose of vitamin C is 72%; and a 1250 mg dose has a bioavailability of less than 50%, with most of the absorbed vitamin C subsequently eliminated in the urine. According to the journal, ascorbic acid will start to be present in the urine when doses of more than 100 mg / day are taken; at such a point the blood plasma is around 70% saturated and white blood cells are also highly saturated. Due to biological absorption limitations, and the activity of the kidneys, vitamin C blood levels are often only able to go so high; even at 1000 mg doses.
Linda Allen’s Natural, Safe, 12 Hour Yeast Infection Treatment
One woman, named Linda Allen, was one of the many men and women who dealt with severe yeast infections. After having a generally healthy early life, Linda came down with a sudden sinus infection around her late teen years. Around this time Linda found out that she had gotten an all too common yeast infection. Linda didn’t waste much time getting an appointment in with her doctor and got a prescription drug for this latest health problem. After taking the drug, Linda found that her Candida seemingly disappeared. But, unfortunately, this was not the end. As some time passed, Linda again found that she had a yeast infection; somehow Candida had gained a hold on her body again. Like before, Linda got another prescription from her physician. Again, the yeast infection cleared up pretty quickly. But, as is the story with many men and women with recurrent Candidiasis, Linda’s Candida problem recurred yet again.
The struggle with Candida eventually had gone on for about a decade in Linda’s life. The medications she got from her doctor did seem to momentarily help the situation, but they never actually stopped her yeast infections for good. Linda’s health had been on a steady slide, and her medical bills kept adding up. Instead of living in a better house, she could only afford a very small apartment due to the excessive money she was spending getting medical attention. In a fortunate turn of events, though, Linda made an appointment with a naturopath. The naturopath did help, and told Linda the root cause of her various health troubles was in fact a somewhat systemic yeast infection. Although the naturopath didn’t provide a permanent cure for removing the Candida in her body, Linda was pointed in a new direction that would eventually yield a permanent cure.
Linda began to diligently study medical information and devoured books on health. Linda tried a wide variety of purported cures; and learned a lot in the process of trying various treatments and researching. Linda often learned from medical experts when they were available to discuss her research. Eventually, Linda began to put together a novel approach to dealing with the root causes of Candida overgrowth. At the end of her work, Linda spent about a year refining her new therapy before she tried it herself.
Fortunately, after a little while on her new treatment approach, Linda found that her yeast infections stopped happening. And, as time moved along, Linda’s health kept getting better. Eventually Linda was back to feeling completely healthy after such a long physical struggle the past years gave her. Linda shared her discovery with people she had met who also were dealing with Candida and had a doctor look over her new therapy as well. The physician that looked through Linda’s treatment said that Linda may in fact have something here! Those people Linda gave her program to reported back that their yeast infections had quickly healed. Eventually, it was obvious this new approach Linda developed was efficacious and generally a very good way to permanently end yeast infections for the average person. Naturally, Linda created a book detailing how to repeat her success and get free from Candida naturally and safely.
Linda’s book has been available since 2004 and over 100,000 people since then have used it to naturally cure their yeast problems and keep them gone for good. Linda also guarantees her book will get rid of your yeast infection or you can get a full, 100% refund of all the money you spent to get the book if you request a refund within 60 days of purchasing her book. Linda’s publisher is a digital retailer owned by the large U.S. based firm Keynetics Incorporated (this link will tell you more about the publishing company). So, you can be assured that you will have a lot of help in the event you request a refund. PayPal is also accepted and can thus be used for a little bit more security. More information about Linda Allen’s personal journey to better health and her book on Candida can be found at Linda Allen’s personal website!
- Google Books -- Tenney, Louise M.H., “Candida Albicans: A Nutritional Approach.” Woodland Publishing, 1986. ISBN: 9780913923283
- ProQuest -- Isela, Nsánchez-Najera Rosa, et al. "Ascorbic acid on oral microbial growth and biofilm formation." The Pharma Innovation 2.4 (2013).
- http://dx.doi.org/10.9735/0975-52220.127.116.11-24 -- Ojha, R., N. Manzoor, and L. A. Khan. "Ascorbic acid modulates pathogenecity markers of Candida albicans." International Journal of Microbiology Research 1.1 (2009): 19. PDF Available Here
- https://doi.org/10.1079/BJN20041264 -- Paillaud, Elena, et al. "Oral candidiasis and nutritional deficiencies in elderly hospitalised patients." British Journal of Nutrition 92.05 (2004): 861-867. PDF Available Here, PubMed
- http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2012.02.009 -- Khalil, Omar Arafat Kdudsi, et al. "Curcumin antifungal and antioxidant activities are increased in the presence of ascorbic acid." Food Chemistry 133.3 (2012): 1001-1005. PDF Available Here
- https://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/ -- USDA Food Composition Databases
- https://hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/morton/barbados_cherry.html -- Morton, J. 1987. “Barbados Cherry.” p. 204–207. In: Fruits of warm climates. Julia F. Morton, Miami, FL.
- http://www.ctahr.hawaii.edu/oc/freepubs/pdf/c2-59.pdf -- Carey D. Miller, Nao S. Wenkam, and Katherine O. Fittin. “ACEROLA - Nutritive Value and Home Use.”
- http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jfca.2014.02.010 -- Phillips, Katherine M., et al. "Nutrient composition of selected traditional United States Northern Plains Native American plant foods." Journal of Food Composition and Analysis 34.2 (2014): 136-152. PDF Available Here
- https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminC-Consumer/ -- Office of Dietary Supplements at the National Institute of Health. Vitamin C Fact Sheet for Consumers
- http://www.cmaj.ca/content/164/3/353.short -- Padayatty, Sebastian J., and Mark Levine. "New insights into the physiology and pharmacology of vitamin C." Canadian Medical Association Journal 164.3 (2001): 353-355. PubMed Full Text
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