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What could be the mechanism behind vitamin c making me tired and slightly depressed?

vitimin c

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#1 holdorfold

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Posted 27 July 2020 - 09:49 PM

I could be feeling completely fine and then take 1.5g of vitimin c and then shortly afterwards, like clockwork, I will feel tired, apathetic and slightly depressed. This will last for hours.

I've read that it's common for people to have the opposite effect, more energy, better mood etc. I can't find anything where people are experience my symptoms from taking vitimin c or what the cause could be.

It lowers coritsol and histamine, perhaps that's something to do with it but I'm not sure.

#2 kurdishfella

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Posted 28 July 2020 - 01:26 AM

maybe detox. that's what people that get vitamin IV injection feel too in the beginning before feeling better.

Edited by kurdishfella, 28 July 2020 - 01:30 AM.

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#3 pamojja

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Posted 28 July 2020 - 08:34 AM


I can't find anything where people are experience my symptoms from taking vitimin c or what the cause could be.

It lowers coritsol and histamine, perhaps that's something to do with it but I'm not sure.


I have bloodwork from last decade which repeatedly showed high cortisol (also in 24 hrs urine), never tested histamine but my rhinitis related IGEs has also been through the roof. Took about 24 g/d of ascorbic acid in this time-period, and in such teaspoon doses it does stops any sneezingfit from rhinitis on the spot.


The detox-properties of ascorbic acid might indeed be the reason for your tiredness. I would investigate comprehensive blood-work, to find weak spots in your metabolism first. Other basic functions of vitamin C according to a textbook and posibly involved are:



  • Collagen synthesis. Vitamin C is an essential coenzyme in collagen synthesis. Cofactor in the hydroxylation of lysine and proline, stimulation of gene-expression in fibroblasts; development, maturation and repair of connective tissue such as skin, bone, tendons ligaments, scar tissue, blood vessels and cartilage (anti-scurvy effect = ascorbic). Lack of ascorbic acid results in poorly formed connective tissue in the skin, joints, muscles, and bones.
  • Hormone production. Glucocorticoids synthesis in adrenal cortex (stress-response), and Vitamin D-hormone (calcitriol synthesis). Production of epinephrine and norepinephrine, (the hormones released by the adrenal gland in response to stress) are dependent on adequate vitamin C status.
  • Neurotransmitter metabolism. Ascorbic acid is essential for the production of norepinephrine and serotonin, two important neurotransmitters in the brain. Conversion of tryptophan in 5-hydrotryptophan (=precursor of serotonin), hydroxylation of dopamine into noradrenalin, synthesis of L-dopa.
  • Amidation of neuro-endocrinic hormones. Gastrin, CRH (corticotropin-releasing- hormone and TRH (tyreotropin-releasing-hormone).
  • Bile acid synthesis and cholesterol breakdown and excretion. The first key step in the degradation of cholesterol (also tyrosine; bile-acid-synthesis, cholesterol-7-hydroxylasis, HMG-CoA-recductasis) depends on vitamin C. Cholesterol levels in the liver and blood increase if vitamin C status is impaired.
  • Carnitine synthesis. Ascorbic acid - together with cofactors niacin, vitamin B6, lysine and methione - is essential for the formation of carnitine, an amino acid required for breakdown of fats for energy. Lack of ascorbic acid lowers levels of carnitine and reduces energy production, producing fatigue and muscle weakness.
  • Tyrosine metabolism. Synthesis and catabolism.
  • Iron absorbtion and metabolism. Vitamin C sharply increases non-heme iron absorption from diet or supplements. Raising iron transference from transferritin (transport protein) to ferritin (storage protein)-
  • Folic acid activation. To tetrahydrofolate (THF).
  • Antioxidant function. Vitamin C is the body’s primary water-soluble antioxidant. It is present in the blood, body fluids, and inside all cells and helps protect against oxidative damage by free radicals of lipids (lipid-peroxidation), proteins, nucleic acid and cell membranes. (anti-inflammatory and anti-degenerative effects, e.g. in cancers, diabetes, arthritis, cataracts and cardiovascular diseases..). Vitamin C is also important in the conversion (reduction) of iron and copper to the form in which they function as cofactors in many enzyme systems, such as reduced copper in superoxide dismutase (another antioxidant).
  • Antioxidant regeneration. Central building-block in the redox-chain of vitamin C, vitamin E, coenzym Q10 and lipoic acid and/or glutathione, Regeneration of glutathion-disulfide into glutathione.
  • Vitamin E sparing effect. Regeneration of tocopherol radicals (vitamin E radical) into the reduced, anti-oxidative active alpha-tocopherol (vitamin E).
  • Protection of folate and vitamin E from oxidation. Ascorbic acid protects folate and vitamin E from oxidation and helps maintain these vitamins in their active forms.
  • Endothelial cell protection. Raising of NO-bioavailability. (anti thrombotic and blood-lowering effect)
  • Detoxification and excretion of drugs and chemicals. Ascorbic acid helps maintain the enzyme systems in the liver that detoxify and excrete drugs and toxic environmental chemicals (such as pesticides and heavy metals). Detoxification of xenobiotika (synthesis/anti-oxidative protection of CYP 450) in the liver, excretion of toxins.
  • Antiviral and antibacterial effect. Vitamin C is important for healthy immune function. It is essential for optimum activity of white blood cells and production of the chemical mediators that direct the immune response. Lack of vitamin C sharply increases vulnerability to infection (Immunocompetence). Stimulation of the cellular (antibodies) and hormonal immune system (interferon), protection of phagocytic membranes from oxidative self-destruction (prolonged function-time of immune cells), activation of complementary systems and of chemotaxis.
  • Anti-glycation. Inhibition of protein glycosylation and AGE-formation. (e.g. HbA1C).
  • Anti-allergic. Vitamin C plays a role in controlling body and blood histamine levels (histamine degradation and mast cell stabilization), and blood histamine levels increase when vitamin C status is poor. High levels of histamine can aggravate allergies, asthma, stomach ulcers, and certain psychiatric disorders.
  • Anti-carcinogenic. Inhibition of the formation of carcinogenic nitrosamines from nitrites and secondary amins (especially of the digestive system), protection of DNA from oxidative damage.


Also there might be paradox effects due to the triaging of nutrients in deficiencies. For example in my case despite a severe Mg-deficiency, homeostasis of serum Mg always kept levels in the normal range. Only whole-blood Mg-test (never rutinely done) would show far below normal.


Finally only could get rid of very pain-ful muscle-cramps and raise my whole-blood Mg with almost monthly Mg-sulfate IVs. Usually testing blood-levels only weeks after an IV, once I did only 1 week after. And for the first time all these years serum-Mg showed below normal. Which to me can only be explained by the overabundance of regular Mg through IVs, triaging had stopped for long neglected tissues (bones) to get a refill. Allowing even serum Mg to go low.


Edited by pamojja, 28 July 2020 - 09:02 AM.

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#4 cardsk

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Posted 07 August 2020 - 12:13 PM

Maybe try taking other supplements because only one vitamin may be doing good on your body but missing other chemical reactions such as 1000mg bioflavonoids along with selenium , etc.

#5 aribadabar

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Posted 09 August 2020 - 09:03 PM

 homeostasis of serum Mg always kept levels in the normal range. Only whole-blood Mg-test (never routinely done) would show far below normal.


Is whole blood or RBC test preferable for accurate Mg picture?



#6 Jesus is King

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Posted 09 August 2020 - 11:17 PM

I’ve taken a myriad of supplements for a long time, trying to cover most of my bases.

Since the last 4 days I’ve been supplementing 200mcg of selenium (life extension super selenium complex). At the moment I’m feeling like a new man. No more daytime tiredness, no more emotional instability, can easily wake up when my alarm goes off, and my libido has skyrocketed, as well as hardness.

So my recommendation would be try taking selenium. I’ve taken all the other common ones for a long time now, and still suffered from tiredness and a bad immune system, but there has been a significant and easily noticeable improvement with my energy levels, mood, and libido since supplementing selenium these last 4 days.

#7 pamojja

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Posted Yesterday, 11:30 AM

Is whole blood or RBC test preferable for accurate Mg picture?


Usually RBC Mg is most accurate for intercellular magnesium. Is however not available to me, and where available a lot more expensive than whole blood (only pay €2.50). The difference between serum and whole blood is that with the later beside serum also the Mg-content of WBC, RBC and clotting factor is tested altogether.

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#8 Ames

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Posted Yesterday, 10:10 PM

It could be a symptom of fast and minor rebound scurvy.


I've long held that supplementing with vitamin C every day is pointless and perhaps counterproductive. The system seems to adapt to it, similar in manner in which it does to hormone supplementation. Hence the the potential for rebound scurvy.


Vitamin C works well for certain issues, such as vascular problems. It is likely best saved for as-needed high dose, intermittent use of no more than a few days to one week followed by significant time off from it (one week or longer). 


If you are relatively young, you shouldn't have a chronic issue that supplemented vitamin C would be useful for over a long period: because your system has a natural antioxidant system will be relatively robust. You don't want to hobble it with chronic ascorbic acid supplementation. You can supplement it with Ascorbic Acid in the short term to assist it in overcoming accute issues, but there is no reason to essentially replace its function with every day vitamin C supplementation. Take it until whichever issue you are attempting to address resolves, and then stop taking it.

Edited by Ames, Yesterday, 10:13 PM.

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