Intravenous (IV) vitamin C is already being used as a treatment for COVID-19 in China, with clinical trials underway. The US government must do the same. Action Alert!
As has been widely reported, there is no vaccine and, so far, no drug that can treat the COVID-19 virus. Reports from China indicate that medical professionals there are doing what our federal government seemingly refuses to do: study the impact of natural medicine on this disease. This is another example of our crony medical system that privileges expensive drugs sold by huge drug companies over inexpensive, safe, and effective natural therapies.
In China there are clinical trials underway to assess IV vitamin C’s (IVC) ability to treat COVID-19 infection. In one such study, the group will receive 12 grams of vitamin C twice a day for seven days by infusion. It will be fascinating to see what the results of this trial will be.
That the Chinese are taking IVC seriously as a treatment highlights our broken medical system. Only FDA-approved drugs can make claims about treating or preventing a disease. It takes an astronomical amount of money to go through drug approval—a sum that only patented pharmaceutical drugs with market exclusivity can realistically recoup. This system ensures that natural products cannot compete with Big Pharma’s substantial slice of the healthcare market—even when natural alternatives are safer, and even sometimes more effective (such as CBD oil for pain as opposed to deadly opioids).
Note that, although IVC is approved as a drug in the US for the treatment of scurvy (more on this below), vitamin C is generally not patentable—meaning there is little financial incentive to do the clinical trials necessary to prove how effective it can be for treating a variety of diseases, such as cancer and, potentially, COVID-19.
Unfortunately, our country has a long history of this lunacy. Remember when tart cherry and walnut growers were attacked by the FDA for daring to list some of the scientifically proven health benefits of their products?
The FDA may have also engineered a shortage of IVC. The agency recently approved IVC as a drug, meaning only one manufacturer can legally make it (read our previous article for more details). That manufacturer recently announced that, due to disruptions in the healthcare supply chain as a result of the pandemic, they won’t be accepting new customers for IV solutions. This situation will likely produce a shortage of IVC at the most crucial time.
These government policies throttle natural medicine, stack the deck for the pharmaceutical industry, and create monopoly profits for big political donors. The current COVID-19 pandemic underscores the crucial need for natural medicine. There are a variety of supplements that can help prevent and even treat viral infections, but these are not being touted by government agencies. (Note: we are not providing medical advice; any supplementation regimen should be discussed with your doctor). Our friends at ANH International have put together a great list of immune-boosting supplements and herbs.
Keep in mind that supplementing for prevention and for treatment are different animals. Generally speaking, substantially higher doses of key nutrients are taken to fight an infection once ill. For example, something like a Myers cocktail may be good for disease prevention (which typically include somewhere around 500mg/mL vitamin C), but, as we see in the Chinese clinical trial, that dose gets increased to 24 grams per day to treat an infection. Famed vitamin C researcher Linus Pauling reportedly took 18,000 mg of vitamin C per day; in his famous book “Vitamin C and the Common Cold,” he wrote that 1,000-2,000 mg of C per day might be enough, but that some people could require up to 5,000 per day. He also wrote:
It is wise to carry some 500-mg tablets of ascorbic acid with you at all times. At the first sign that a cold is developing, the first feeling of scratchiness of the throat, or presence of mucus in the nose, or muscle pain or general malaise, begin the treatment by swallowing one or two 500-mg tablets. Continue the treatment for several hours by taking an additional tablet or two tablets per hour.
Some doctors advise taking quercetin with C to make it even more effective.
Additionally, as our colleagues at ANH-International point out:
Vitamin C is indeed a powerful antioxidant against a large number of free radical species, but it also functions as a cofactor for enzyme reactions. Interestingly the antiviral effects of vitamin C may be down to it also acting as a pro-oxidant when the need arises, such as in the case of cancer or viral infections. Healthy cells tend not to be affected by this pro-oxidant effect, but viruses and cancer are, which is why intravenous vitamin C is used to deliver large doses to affected people.
Other helpful nutrients for this pandemic are:
- Garlic: 9,000-18,000 mg every day until symptoms subside.
- Vitamin D: a group of vitamin D researchers have determined that optimum vitamin D levels for disease prevention are 40-60 ng/ml. Some recommend a higher level, such as 70 or higher, but still less than 100, especially when trying to sidestep a major infection or cancer. If you do not maintain these levels regularly, it may be advisable to take 50,000 IU for four days then slowly decrease the dose to maintain optimal levels.
- Zinc: one lozenge containing 18.75 mg of zinc acetate every two waking hours; no more than 8 lozenges a day for no longer than three consecutive days. Try to avoid lozenges that contain sugar, since sugar may suppress the immune system.
- Vitamin A: for improved resistance to viral infections, some sources recommend taking 50,000 IU twice daily for five days, then reducing to 25,000 IU for not more than ten days.
- Silver has its proponents as an anti-viral or to prevent follow up bacterial infections. Crucially, evidence has shown that silver hydrosol may be effective against certain strains of coronavirus like SARS.
It is irresponsible for health authorities not to inform people of natural ways of boosting immunity, particularly in the absence of pharmaceutical treatments for COVID-19.
Action Alert! Write to the FDA and Congress, urging them to explore the use of IV vitamin C to help coronavirus patients and to allow other manufacturers to produce IVC. Please send your message immediately.