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High Dose Vitamin C Side Effects: These 5 Drawbacks Associated With Megadoses

Image: High Dose Vitamin C Side Effects: These 5 Drawbacks Associated With Megadoses
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By    |   Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 04:36 PM

Many studies have concluded that high doses of vitamin C are beneficial in the treatment of some health issues including heart health, immune system support, increased lifespan, and in the treatment of cancer. However, doses above the recommended dietary allowance of between 75mg for women and 90mg for men can cause side effects.

Here are five side effects that high doses of vitamin C can cause:

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1. Diarrhea: According to Livestrong, when taking vitamin C the "tolerable upper limit is the maximum amount of a vitamin you can take each day without experiencing any ill effects." One of the drawbacks to taking high doses of vitamin C is "severe gastrointestinal irritation and diarrhea." This can lead to dehydration, extreme thirst, fatigue, low urine output, and reduced blood pressure.

2. Nausea, vomiting, and heartburn: Even though vitamin C is water-soluble and is not stored in the body, in higher doses it can cause nausea to the point of vomiting as well as heartburn. The Merck Manual states that in relation to high doses of vitamin C, nausea is a sign of "vitamin C toxicity."

3. Increased iron absorption: Hemochromatosis is a defect in the genes that controls how iron is absorbed in the body. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, taking supplements can increase the buildup of iron in the body for people at risk of developing hemochromatosis. High doses of vitamin C can "cause the body to absorb more iron" and thus are not recommended for people with hemochromatosis.

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4. Insomnia: One of the side effects of taking megadoses of vitamin C can be insomnia. For some, the vitamin has a stimulating effect, which can result in sleeplessness especially if taken after 6 p.m.

5. Kidney stones: Some research indicates that high doses of vitamin C may cause kidney stones, especially in men. Researchers "suspected that greater amounts of vitamin C could elevate the risk of kidney stones because the body breaks down the vitamin into material known as oxelate — a part of the stones," says Medical News Today. It is recommended that people with a history of kidney stones consult with their physician before taking high doses of vitamin C.

This article is for information only and is not intended as medical advice. Talk with your doctor about your specific health and medical needs.

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Many studies have concluded that high doses of vitamin C are beneficial in the treatment of some health issues including heart health, immune system support, increased lifespan, and in the treatment of cancer. However, doses above the recommended dietary allowance can cause side effects.
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Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 04:36 PM
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