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Natural Awakenings Metro Phoenix & Northern Arizona

Vitamin C for Cancer Treatment: The popular vitamin can help damage and destroy cancer cells, reports Dr. Jonathan Psenka

Oct 01, 2014 07:57PM ● By Dr. Jonathan Psenka

Vitamin C is good for us, and the health benefits of this vitamin range from fighting the common cold to helping speed trauma recovery by strengthening connective tissues and its ability to stabilize mast cells and prevent allergic reations. Most famously, vitamin C in the form of eating limes helped the British Navy prevent scurvy while crossing the Atlantic, and thus earned them the nickname of “limey”.

Vitamin C enjoys an almost celebrity status in the vitamin world. Very few vitamins reach the height of its popularity and nearly all other vitamins have ongoing debates regarding either their safety or usefulness. Nobody is arguing the fact that taking large oral doses of vitamin C may require some people to keep a close proximity to the bathroom. However, this action can also make vitamin C useful in situations where things become backed up and it becomes difficult to move things along.

One very interesting action of vitamin C is its ability to selectively damage and destroy cancer cells. This action of vitamin C is due to the fact that it is absorbed into our cells by the same receptors that absorb sugar. This is important because the most basic definition of cancer is “uncontrolled cellular division.” This means that cancer cells keep making new cancer cells, despite the body’s attempts to stop the process. All of this increased cellular reproduction requires energy, and one of the ways in which cancer cells produce energy is by metabolizing sugar. Cancer cells require so much energy that they can actually increase the number of sugar receptors on their surface in order to out-compete normal cells for the sweet stuff.

When a person receives intravenous vitamin C, the sugar receptors start pumping the vitamin C into cancer cells. Once that vitamin C is inside the cancer cell, a series of chemical reactions occur which ultimately produce a large quantity of electron-stealing free radicals inside the cancer cells. With all of these damaging free radicals being generated inside the cancer cell, the cell’s defense systems become overwhelmed and fatal damage is inflicted. It’s interesting to note that this sort of free radical-mediated damage is also how many conventional cancer treatments work, with one big exception. Vitamin C does not adversely affect normal cells.

In fact, high-dose intravenous vitamin C IVs are nearly free of adverse treatment-related side effects. While some of the vitamin C will surely end up inside of normal cells, it is broken down into substances like oxygen and water. Higher doses of IV vitamin C can cause a headache in dehydrated people, and some may experience hypoglycemia when receiving them. Both the potential headaches and the hypoglycemia can easily be avoided by taking the proper steps. Additionally, on a systemic level, vitamin C improves the functioning of the immune system, promotes increased connective tissue strength and has been shown to improve quality of life and longevity in people fighting cancer.

Although vitamin C IVs are both safe and effective, they are rarely recommended outside of the naturopathic medical office due to concerns regarding compatibility with conventional treatments. But that has been addressed by research showing that the addition of vitamin C may actually improve the effectiveness of conventional treatments. Our current success rate with cancer is not so good that we can afford to overlook a non-toxic, cancer selective treatment proven to improve the quality of life in people fighting cancer.

Dr. Jonathan Psenka has been helping people fight cancer at Longevity Medical Health Center since 2002. For more information, call 602-428-6151 or visit


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