Japanese researchers have reported more evidence to support the controversial idea that vitamin C protects against exercise-induced asthma. Patients with this type of asthma have symptoms -- breathlessness, wheezing and cough -- when they engage in physical activity. None of the children studied had taken drugs commonly used to treat asthma, such as inhaled steroids or Intal. The Japanese team gave each child 2 grams of vitamin C per day for 4 weeks and performed a second exercise test. They also surveyed patients regarding the frequency and severity of asthma attacks during the study. Eight of 17 patients reported decreased frequency of attack and improved lung function.
World Congress of Asthma; Buenos Aires, Brazil; October 19, 1999
COMMENT: A very impressive study demonstrating the potency of a simple inexpensive and safe supplement. The best way to administer vitamin C is by purchasing a powder and by adding it to your water. This allows a steady infusion of C to be given all day long. I suspect that there would have been a far greater response of 50% if the researchers had changed the dosing. I have never recommended this for asthma but it certainly makes sense. I use high doses of vitamin C intravenously for patients, up to 50,000 mg at one time, but normally 25,000 mg over a 90 minute period. This works particularly well for viral infections. Asthma is typically due to mold sensitivities, so removing one from a home or school that is contaminated from a leaky basement or roof is a start in the right direction. The other simple measure that can be done is to stop all fluids that the child drinks but water. Fruit juice is not a good fluid for children, or for adults for that matter. Commercial fruit juice is frequently contaminated with mold and the high amounts of fructose in the juice will push insulin levels out of balance and make allergic reactions much more likely.