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Friday, November 12, 2010

Why do I get joint pain when I take Vitamin C?

Any idea why I get joint pain when I take Vitamin C?
Have had a few problems with this lately.
Short question: Long answer...

There is a line of possibility that I will explain:

A lack of copper and a deficiency of Vitamin C have similar effects in the body.  A copper deficiency mimics scurvy, causes bleeding gums and bruising.  This is to do with copper being critical for strong, resilient collagen. The joint surfaces, including cartilage are very sensitive to nutrient imbalances that affect collagen health.  An active person, like you, may first notice a deficiency of copper as joint pain.

An example of toxic element
It is interesting to note, as well, that adrenal exhaustion is associated with copper depletion.  Work and family stress, coupled with exhausting exercise is a sure recipe for copper depletion.  This will be even more the case if you are exposed to toxins, such as lead and solvents.

Now, here's the possibility for what is happening with you: Vitamin C and copper must be in balance in the body.  Vitamin C is an antagonist of copper and vice-versa.  Too much vitamin C depletes copper (Too much copper depletes vitamin C), thus predisposing the joints to excess wear - pain.  It may be that you already are deficient in copper and even a small amount of extra vitamin C may depress levels below a critical point.  There are contributing factors to this possibility as follows.

If you are in an occupation, or have a past-time in which you are or have been exposed to toxins, such as lead and mercury, then you may risk copper depletion.  Typical at-risk occupations are building, plumbing, printing, painting, mechanical repairs and engineering. Add vitamin C to these toxins that accumulate deep in the body and you may worsen a copper deficiency.

Lead tends to accumulate deep in the bones, including the joints and this may cause a gradual erosion of healthy bone and cartilage over the years.  This will cause bone and joint pain.

Now, it just happens that vitamin C is an antagonist of toxic elements, including lead.  Vitamin C is used to safely chelate toxins such as lead out of the body.  So, if you take vitamin C in anything other than very small doses, the lead that is sequestered deep in the bone may be mobilised, thus increasing lead levels in the cartilages.  While this is a very good thing to have happen (Getting rid of lead and any other toxins), there is likely to be a temporary exacerbation of joint pain and this can come and go for quite a long time depending on your general state of health, toxic burden and any ongoing exposures.  This discomfort can be controlled by adjusting the dosage of vitamin C and by adding other nutrients such as sulphur, copper and zinc by way of supplementation.

In conclusion: The causes of your joint pain may be complex and most probably a combination of nutrient depletions/excesses, chronic stress (adrenal fatigue) and long-term exposure to toxins.   These are all assumptions that may or may not apply to you.  The only way to know what is going on is to do an ICL Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis and then to act on the findings.

In the meantime, there would be no harm and possibly plenty of benefit with taking vitamin C; however, not just any vitamin C.  I have a "Practitioner Only" only form that is a combination of Vitamin C, magnesium, zinc, manganese, potassium copper and bioflavanoids.  This is the safest and most effective formulation to take in the meantime.  You will need to consult with me first to determine if it is suitable for you.

As far as vitamin C dosage is concerned, it is rare to need more than 2,000mg per day over and above a healthy diet.

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