Linus Pauling: Preventing Illnesses and Diseases With Vitamin C

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The world's only 2 time unshared Nobel Prize winner, Dr. Linus Pauling, stated "You can trace every sickness, every disease and every ailment to a mineral deficiency."

In this video Dr. Pauling talks about appropriate amounts of vitamin C for humans and how due to evolution humans don't produce their own vitamin C.

Various substances are normally present in the human body and many of them required for life and characterized by low toxicity. I call them orthomolecular substances.

Here we have what the Food and Nutrition Board does, estimating the amount, the intake, needed to keep you from dying. That's the RDA. But you can also ask the question, "What is the intake that will put you in the best of health? And be most effective against disease." And when I went through the medical, nutritional literature to find out what this intake was I found there was nothing in the literature about it. Practically nothing, just a few papers had been written on this subject.

Well, how do you find out? It's a little hard, when people ask me I say, "If you still catch colds you're not taking enough vitamin C." That's one way of finding out. It's interesting that for most vitamins, all animals require the substances exogenously. With little doubt what happened was, 600 million years ago, primitive animal was running around eating plants, his ancestors, these plants. His biochemistry was very much like theirs. Here he was able to synthesize thiamine and riboflavin and peroxygen and vitamin A. But he was eating the plants which synthesized them and he was getting enough in his foods so that he really didn't need this apparatus and he lost it. And ever since then, all animals have required these various vitamins. This didn't happen with vitamin C. And why not? Presumably because there isn't enough vitamin C in the foods. And one reason that animals require more vitamin C than plants is that animals have collagen as their principal macromolecular molecule, structural molecule, and plants use a carbohydrate, polysaccharide cellulose.

So human beings can't synthesize collagen without using up vitamin C. They need more vitamin C than animals do so they've kept on synthesizing it. Unfortunately the common ancestor of all of the primates some 25 million years ago was living in a tropical valley where the food was so high in vitamin C that when a mutant came along that had lost the ability to make the enzyme that would produce vitamin C, he had an advantage over the wild type, and the wild type, and since then all the primates have had to get vitamin C exogenously. Most of them have had sense enough to stay in the tropics eating the foods that are high in vitamin C, but man has moved out into temperate and subarctic areas and has changed his eating habits in such a way that practically all human beings are suffering from a sort of subclinical scurvy, that is called "ordinary good health", but should be called "ordinary poor health."

So we can ask, how much vitamin C do these animals manufacture? It's proportional to body weight. 70 kilograms of house flies manufacture 10 grams of vitamin C per day. In general, animals manufacture about 10 grams per day. It says here, 2 to 20 grams per day per 70 kilogram body weight. That's 40 to 400 times RDA for humans. I might as well mention now that I take 300 times RDA, 18 grams of vitamin C per day, and 80 times RDA of vitamin E and 25 times RDA of the B vitamins. Perhaps when I start getting old I'll go up to 50 times. 10 times RDA of vitamin A.

It's interesting that the recommended amount of vitamin C is 70 times that for human beings. It's easy to understand that of course. Monkeys are expensive, probably $1000 each, I don't know, maybe $2000 each. If you've been spending the last year implanting electrodes in their brains and writing down things in a research book and then come in and the monkeys have died, that's a real tragedy. You can't publish a paper and you probably won't get tenure. So they've worked very hard to find out what the optimum intake of vitamin C is for monkeys.

Insight

Vitamin C & Cancer: Discovery, Recovery, Controversy. Presents the results of nutritional research that suggest that megadoses of vitamin C and other nutrients are beneficial in the process of fighting off and recovering from cancer. Presents case-study evidence from the author and statistical analysis from his friend and co-author, Nobel Laureate, Dr. Linus Pauling. For consumers.

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