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Because vitamin C is water-soluble, it washes out of your body when you urinate. Therefore, it is important to get several doses of vitamin C a day. To get enough vitamin C, I recommend taking at least two, usually three, doses of vitamin C daily. I do this by combining food and supplements. In the morning, I take a multivitamin containing 500 milligrams (mg) of vitamin C, have an orange or grapefruit at lunch, and take a multivitamin containing 500 mg of vitamin C with dinner (that multivitamin also has 200 international unit (IU) of vitamin E for breakfast and dinner), just to make sure I'm getting enough. I also get vitamin C from other things I eat, just in smaller amounts, such as tomatoes and salads. Vitamin C also tends to leech out of packaged or cut vegetables. In addition, cooking reduces vitamin C levels even more. That's another reason to eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables every day. Also, eat some fruit or take some of your vitamin C one to two hours before any vigorous exercise. Vigorous physical activity causes oxidant buildup, and vitamin C's antioxidant power may be one of the ways that vitamin C works to keep you younger.
To prevent vitamin C deficiency, government guidelines recommend a daily dose of 90 milligrams (mg) for men, 75 mg for women. We recommend that you get 1,200 mg of vitamin C per day from food and supplements. This higher amount not only prevents deficiency but also helps prevent disease and needless aging.
This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.