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It’s Now Possible to Brew a Daily Dose of Vitamins in Your Coffee

It’s Now Possible to Brew a Daily Dose of Vitamins in Your Coffee


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The popularity of coffee and tea pods is due to convenience, plain and simple. So what could be better (besides biodegradable or edible containers)? Well, how about if those neat little Keurig coffee and tea capsules came with vitamin-enriched nutrients included to eliminate daily pill-popping?

That’s exactly what VitaCup has done with its first-of-its-kind line of vitamin-infused coffee and tea pods. The world’s healthiest cup of coffee was developed in San Diego by company founder Brandon Fishman, fourth-generation Roastmaster Jeff McIntosh, and Chief Vitamin Officer Brianna Hanratty, a registered dietician and nutrition clinician. Their line of VitaCup beverages are infused with a blend of vitamins B1, B5, B6, B9, B12, and D3 plus antioxidants.

By incorporating vitamins into our existing morning coffee or tea routine, VitaCup hopes to make it easy for consumers to maintain a consistent vitamin regimen. The National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey found that about a third of the population is at risk for vitamin deficiencies, while the Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that only two-thirds of the population is getting sufficient Vitamin D. The Daily Meal spoke with Hanratty about VitaCup’s healthy coffee line.

The Daily Meal: Why did no one think of this before? What was your inspiration?
Brianna Hanratty:
VitaCup’s mission is inspired by statistics that much of the population is vitamin deficient. Managing one’s vitamin intake ends up on the bottom of our to-do lists, leading to nutrition deficiencies that may cause fatigue, weight gain, and even the inability to properly concentrate. We love that coffee is the second most consumed beverage in the world, after water, so it is a great medium to achieve our goal to provide as many people as possible with the health benefits of our vitamin blend.

What are the nutritional benefits of the typical morning cup of coffee versus VitaCup?
While a typical cup of morning coffee comes with caffeine and antioxidants, VitaCup has the same benefits with the added boost of five essential B vitamins, vitamin D3, and antioxidants. Not only do they help with energy, but are support adrenal health, healthy digestion, brain function, and bone health.

What are the complexities involved in creating the VitaCup formula so that vitamins don’t lose their potency when heated or stored?
We work very hard at testing our coffee before sending it out to ensure that the intended amount of vitamins is delivered into each cup. As some vitamins are sensitive to heat and the heating process can reduce the vitamin content, we test carefully in the lab to know how much we need per pod prior to the brewing process to have the perfect amount in the final product.

What’s next? Can we please request healthy VitaCupDonut pods?
Although I do like a good donut from time to time, it would not be a healthy choice to eat a donut every morning! Unlike our coffee, which is essentially calorically and carbohydrate free, a single medium donut has about 200 calories, 11 grams of fat and 22 grams of carbohydrates. Sorry.

VitaCup may not make donut blends, but it does offer Gourmet Breakfast Blend, Gourmet House Blend, and Gourmet Decaf Blend, plus three signature flavors: French roast, French vanilla, and green tea, a mix of matcha and moringa. And those controversial throw-away K-cup pods? VitaCup’s capsules and lids are BPA-free and recyclable at Number 5 recycling centers. The company’s coffee and tea production facilities and distribution centers are LEED-certified, and a portion of sales go to Vitamin Angels, a non-profit group helping deliver vitamins to underserved populations around the world. VitaCup packages are sold in 16- to 128-count multipacks at GNC.com, Amazon.com and VitaCup.com.

Not a hot coffee fan? We taste-tested nine top iced coffee brands.

Or perhaps you'd like to try an Irish coffee:


What happens when you take too much vitamin C?

Vitamin C is usually safe to take even at high dosages. However, people may sometimes experience mild side effects, such as digestive discomfort. Rarely, more serious side effects can occur.

Vitamin C is an essential vitamin for the human body. It is an antioxidant, and it helps with a range of important processes, including lowering blood pressure, fighting inflammation, and creating collagen.

In this article, we look at the recommended upper limits of vitamin C intake, possible side effects of taking too much, and other warnings.

Share on Pinterest It is usually safe to frequently eat foods high in vitamin C.

Frequently eating foods high in vitamin C should not lead to any health issues. Taking too much vitamin C through supplements can, however, cause side effects.

In adults, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin C is 90 milligrams (mg) for males and 75 mg for females.

Adults who take more than 2,000 mg of vitamin C per day may experience side effects.

When a person takes more than the recommended limit of vitamin C, they may experience mild digestive disturbances. These can occur if the vitamin C that the body does not absorb irritates the gastrointestinal tract.

Common mild side effects of too much vitamin C include:

The body does not absorb all of the vitamin C that it gets from supplements.

For example, if a person takes 30–180 mg of vitamin C each day, their body absorbs about 70–90% of this vitamin. If a person takes more than 1 gram (g) of vitamin C per day, the body absorbs less than 50% of the vitamin, which reduces the risk of negative side effects. The excess leaves the body in the urine.

As vitamin C can cause unpleasant symptoms if a person takes too much, the Food and Nutrition Board have established “tolerable upper intake levels.”

According to the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) , the upper limit for vitamin C intake in people aged 19 years and over is 2,000 mg in males and females. The limit remains the same for pregnant or breastfeeding women.

The upper daily vitamin C levels for children and infants are as follows:

  • 400 mg for infants aged 1–3 years
  • 650 mg for children aged 4–8 years
  • 1,200 mg for children aged 9–13 years
  • 1,800 mg for teenagers aged 14–18 years
  • 1,800 mg in pregnant or breastfeeding teenagers aged 14–18 years

There are exceptions to these limits, which only apply if a person’s doctor has not specified a different intake. Some people may have to take larger amounts of vitamin C for medical treatments.

Less commonly, people may experience severe side effects from taking too much vitamin C. Long term intake above the recommended levels increases the risk of these negative effects.

Possible health risks of taking too much vitamin C include:

Kidney stones

Doctors believe that too much vitamin C supplementation could result in a person excreting the compounds oxalate and uric acid in their urine. These compounds could lead to kidney stone formation.

The authors of a case study in the journal Kidney Internationalreported that a woman developed kidney stones after taking 4 g or more of vitamin C each day for 4 months.

However, researchers have not conducted any larger scale studies on vitamin C intake and kidney stone formation. They do know that people who have a history of kidney stones are more likely to form them if they take large amounts of vitamin C, according to the ODS .

Nutrient imbalances

Another concern regarding excessive vitamin C intake is that it can impair the body’s ability to process other nutrients.

For example, vitamin C may reduce the levels of vitamin B-12 and copper in the body.

The presence of vitamin C can also enhance iron absorption in the body, which could lead to excessively high levels.

Cause bone spurs

According to the Arthritis Foundation, one study found that the presence of very high vitamin C levels in the body increased the likelihood of a person developing painful bone spurs.

However, the Foundation also cited a research study that found that people with low levels of vitamin C had a higher risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, a painful inflammatory joint condition.

These findings emphasize the need for appropriate vitamin C supplementation that provides neither too much nor too little.

Impair the effectiveness of niacin-simvastatin

Evidence suggests that taking vitamin C supplements may impair the body’s ability to increase high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol in people taking the combination drug niacin-simvastatin. This drug combines the vitamin niacin with the statin simvastatin (Zocor), and people take it to treat high cholesterol.

Doctors consider HDL cholesterol the “good” cholesterol because it reduces the amount of harmful cholesterol in the blood.

If a person takes vitamin C supplements and niacin-simvastatin, they should talk to their doctor about ways to make each more effective. Doctors do not know whether vitamin C also affects the ability of other medicines similar to Zocor.

A person’s body cannot make vitamin C, so people need to eat enough foods that contain vitamin C to meet their daily needs. If someone is at risk of a vitamin C deficiency, they can take vitamin C supplements.

The ODS advise aiming for the following RDA of vitamin C each day:

AgeMaleFemale
1–3 years15 mg15 mg
4–8 years25 mg25 mg
9–13 years45 mg45 mg
14–18 years75 mg65 mg
19+ years90 mg75 mg

People who smoke should take 35 mg more vitamin C per day than those who do not smoke.

During pregnancy or when breastfeeding, women should get the following levels of vitamin C per day:

  • 14–18 years: 80 mg during pregnancy and 115 mg when breastfeeding
  • 19 years and older: 85 mg during pregnancy and 120 mg when breastfeeding

There is not enough research to suggest an RDA for vitamin C in those younger than 1 year of age. As a result, the ODS provide an “adequate intake,” which is the amount that is likely to be sufficient:


What happens when you take too much vitamin C?

Vitamin C is usually safe to take even at high dosages. However, people may sometimes experience mild side effects, such as digestive discomfort. Rarely, more serious side effects can occur.

Vitamin C is an essential vitamin for the human body. It is an antioxidant, and it helps with a range of important processes, including lowering blood pressure, fighting inflammation, and creating collagen.

In this article, we look at the recommended upper limits of vitamin C intake, possible side effects of taking too much, and other warnings.

Share on Pinterest It is usually safe to frequently eat foods high in vitamin C.

Frequently eating foods high in vitamin C should not lead to any health issues. Taking too much vitamin C through supplements can, however, cause side effects.

In adults, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin C is 90 milligrams (mg) for males and 75 mg for females.

Adults who take more than 2,000 mg of vitamin C per day may experience side effects.

When a person takes more than the recommended limit of vitamin C, they may experience mild digestive disturbances. These can occur if the vitamin C that the body does not absorb irritates the gastrointestinal tract.

Common mild side effects of too much vitamin C include:

The body does not absorb all of the vitamin C that it gets from supplements.

For example, if a person takes 30–180 mg of vitamin C each day, their body absorbs about 70–90% of this vitamin. If a person takes more than 1 gram (g) of vitamin C per day, the body absorbs less than 50% of the vitamin, which reduces the risk of negative side effects. The excess leaves the body in the urine.

As vitamin C can cause unpleasant symptoms if a person takes too much, the Food and Nutrition Board have established “tolerable upper intake levels.”

According to the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) , the upper limit for vitamin C intake in people aged 19 years and over is 2,000 mg in males and females. The limit remains the same for pregnant or breastfeeding women.

The upper daily vitamin C levels for children and infants are as follows:

  • 400 mg for infants aged 1–3 years
  • 650 mg for children aged 4–8 years
  • 1,200 mg for children aged 9–13 years
  • 1,800 mg for teenagers aged 14–18 years
  • 1,800 mg in pregnant or breastfeeding teenagers aged 14–18 years

There are exceptions to these limits, which only apply if a person’s doctor has not specified a different intake. Some people may have to take larger amounts of vitamin C for medical treatments.

Less commonly, people may experience severe side effects from taking too much vitamin C. Long term intake above the recommended levels increases the risk of these negative effects.

Possible health risks of taking too much vitamin C include:

Kidney stones

Doctors believe that too much vitamin C supplementation could result in a person excreting the compounds oxalate and uric acid in their urine. These compounds could lead to kidney stone formation.

The authors of a case study in the journal Kidney Internationalreported that a woman developed kidney stones after taking 4 g or more of vitamin C each day for 4 months.

However, researchers have not conducted any larger scale studies on vitamin C intake and kidney stone formation. They do know that people who have a history of kidney stones are more likely to form them if they take large amounts of vitamin C, according to the ODS .

Nutrient imbalances

Another concern regarding excessive vitamin C intake is that it can impair the body’s ability to process other nutrients.

For example, vitamin C may reduce the levels of vitamin B-12 and copper in the body.

The presence of vitamin C can also enhance iron absorption in the body, which could lead to excessively high levels.

Cause bone spurs

According to the Arthritis Foundation, one study found that the presence of very high vitamin C levels in the body increased the likelihood of a person developing painful bone spurs.

However, the Foundation also cited a research study that found that people with low levels of vitamin C had a higher risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, a painful inflammatory joint condition.

These findings emphasize the need for appropriate vitamin C supplementation that provides neither too much nor too little.

Impair the effectiveness of niacin-simvastatin

Evidence suggests that taking vitamin C supplements may impair the body’s ability to increase high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol in people taking the combination drug niacin-simvastatin. This drug combines the vitamin niacin with the statin simvastatin (Zocor), and people take it to treat high cholesterol.

Doctors consider HDL cholesterol the “good” cholesterol because it reduces the amount of harmful cholesterol in the blood.

If a person takes vitamin C supplements and niacin-simvastatin, they should talk to their doctor about ways to make each more effective. Doctors do not know whether vitamin C also affects the ability of other medicines similar to Zocor.

A person’s body cannot make vitamin C, so people need to eat enough foods that contain vitamin C to meet their daily needs. If someone is at risk of a vitamin C deficiency, they can take vitamin C supplements.

The ODS advise aiming for the following RDA of vitamin C each day:

AgeMaleFemale
1–3 years15 mg15 mg
4–8 years25 mg25 mg
9–13 years45 mg45 mg
14–18 years75 mg65 mg
19+ years90 mg75 mg

People who smoke should take 35 mg more vitamin C per day than those who do not smoke.

During pregnancy or when breastfeeding, women should get the following levels of vitamin C per day:

  • 14–18 years: 80 mg during pregnancy and 115 mg when breastfeeding
  • 19 years and older: 85 mg during pregnancy and 120 mg when breastfeeding

There is not enough research to suggest an RDA for vitamin C in those younger than 1 year of age. As a result, the ODS provide an “adequate intake,” which is the amount that is likely to be sufficient:


What happens when you take too much vitamin C?

Vitamin C is usually safe to take even at high dosages. However, people may sometimes experience mild side effects, such as digestive discomfort. Rarely, more serious side effects can occur.

Vitamin C is an essential vitamin for the human body. It is an antioxidant, and it helps with a range of important processes, including lowering blood pressure, fighting inflammation, and creating collagen.

In this article, we look at the recommended upper limits of vitamin C intake, possible side effects of taking too much, and other warnings.

Share on Pinterest It is usually safe to frequently eat foods high in vitamin C.

Frequently eating foods high in vitamin C should not lead to any health issues. Taking too much vitamin C through supplements can, however, cause side effects.

In adults, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin C is 90 milligrams (mg) for males and 75 mg for females.

Adults who take more than 2,000 mg of vitamin C per day may experience side effects.

When a person takes more than the recommended limit of vitamin C, they may experience mild digestive disturbances. These can occur if the vitamin C that the body does not absorb irritates the gastrointestinal tract.

Common mild side effects of too much vitamin C include:

The body does not absorb all of the vitamin C that it gets from supplements.

For example, if a person takes 30–180 mg of vitamin C each day, their body absorbs about 70–90% of this vitamin. If a person takes more than 1 gram (g) of vitamin C per day, the body absorbs less than 50% of the vitamin, which reduces the risk of negative side effects. The excess leaves the body in the urine.

As vitamin C can cause unpleasant symptoms if a person takes too much, the Food and Nutrition Board have established “tolerable upper intake levels.”

According to the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) , the upper limit for vitamin C intake in people aged 19 years and over is 2,000 mg in males and females. The limit remains the same for pregnant or breastfeeding women.

The upper daily vitamin C levels for children and infants are as follows:

  • 400 mg for infants aged 1–3 years
  • 650 mg for children aged 4–8 years
  • 1,200 mg for children aged 9–13 years
  • 1,800 mg for teenagers aged 14–18 years
  • 1,800 mg in pregnant or breastfeeding teenagers aged 14–18 years

There are exceptions to these limits, which only apply if a person’s doctor has not specified a different intake. Some people may have to take larger amounts of vitamin C for medical treatments.

Less commonly, people may experience severe side effects from taking too much vitamin C. Long term intake above the recommended levels increases the risk of these negative effects.

Possible health risks of taking too much vitamin C include:

Kidney stones

Doctors believe that too much vitamin C supplementation could result in a person excreting the compounds oxalate and uric acid in their urine. These compounds could lead to kidney stone formation.

The authors of a case study in the journal Kidney Internationalreported that a woman developed kidney stones after taking 4 g or more of vitamin C each day for 4 months.

However, researchers have not conducted any larger scale studies on vitamin C intake and kidney stone formation. They do know that people who have a history of kidney stones are more likely to form them if they take large amounts of vitamin C, according to the ODS .

Nutrient imbalances

Another concern regarding excessive vitamin C intake is that it can impair the body’s ability to process other nutrients.

For example, vitamin C may reduce the levels of vitamin B-12 and copper in the body.

The presence of vitamin C can also enhance iron absorption in the body, which could lead to excessively high levels.

Cause bone spurs

According to the Arthritis Foundation, one study found that the presence of very high vitamin C levels in the body increased the likelihood of a person developing painful bone spurs.

However, the Foundation also cited a research study that found that people with low levels of vitamin C had a higher risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, a painful inflammatory joint condition.

These findings emphasize the need for appropriate vitamin C supplementation that provides neither too much nor too little.

Impair the effectiveness of niacin-simvastatin

Evidence suggests that taking vitamin C supplements may impair the body’s ability to increase high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol in people taking the combination drug niacin-simvastatin. This drug combines the vitamin niacin with the statin simvastatin (Zocor), and people take it to treat high cholesterol.

Doctors consider HDL cholesterol the “good” cholesterol because it reduces the amount of harmful cholesterol in the blood.

If a person takes vitamin C supplements and niacin-simvastatin, they should talk to their doctor about ways to make each more effective. Doctors do not know whether vitamin C also affects the ability of other medicines similar to Zocor.

A person’s body cannot make vitamin C, so people need to eat enough foods that contain vitamin C to meet their daily needs. If someone is at risk of a vitamin C deficiency, they can take vitamin C supplements.

The ODS advise aiming for the following RDA of vitamin C each day:

AgeMaleFemale
1–3 years15 mg15 mg
4–8 years25 mg25 mg
9–13 years45 mg45 mg
14–18 years75 mg65 mg
19+ years90 mg75 mg

People who smoke should take 35 mg more vitamin C per day than those who do not smoke.

During pregnancy or when breastfeeding, women should get the following levels of vitamin C per day:

  • 14–18 years: 80 mg during pregnancy and 115 mg when breastfeeding
  • 19 years and older: 85 mg during pregnancy and 120 mg when breastfeeding

There is not enough research to suggest an RDA for vitamin C in those younger than 1 year of age. As a result, the ODS provide an “adequate intake,” which is the amount that is likely to be sufficient:


What happens when you take too much vitamin C?

Vitamin C is usually safe to take even at high dosages. However, people may sometimes experience mild side effects, such as digestive discomfort. Rarely, more serious side effects can occur.

Vitamin C is an essential vitamin for the human body. It is an antioxidant, and it helps with a range of important processes, including lowering blood pressure, fighting inflammation, and creating collagen.

In this article, we look at the recommended upper limits of vitamin C intake, possible side effects of taking too much, and other warnings.

Share on Pinterest It is usually safe to frequently eat foods high in vitamin C.

Frequently eating foods high in vitamin C should not lead to any health issues. Taking too much vitamin C through supplements can, however, cause side effects.

In adults, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin C is 90 milligrams (mg) for males and 75 mg for females.

Adults who take more than 2,000 mg of vitamin C per day may experience side effects.

When a person takes more than the recommended limit of vitamin C, they may experience mild digestive disturbances. These can occur if the vitamin C that the body does not absorb irritates the gastrointestinal tract.

Common mild side effects of too much vitamin C include:

The body does not absorb all of the vitamin C that it gets from supplements.

For example, if a person takes 30–180 mg of vitamin C each day, their body absorbs about 70–90% of this vitamin. If a person takes more than 1 gram (g) of vitamin C per day, the body absorbs less than 50% of the vitamin, which reduces the risk of negative side effects. The excess leaves the body in the urine.

As vitamin C can cause unpleasant symptoms if a person takes too much, the Food and Nutrition Board have established “tolerable upper intake levels.”

According to the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) , the upper limit for vitamin C intake in people aged 19 years and over is 2,000 mg in males and females. The limit remains the same for pregnant or breastfeeding women.

The upper daily vitamin C levels for children and infants are as follows:

  • 400 mg for infants aged 1–3 years
  • 650 mg for children aged 4–8 years
  • 1,200 mg for children aged 9–13 years
  • 1,800 mg for teenagers aged 14–18 years
  • 1,800 mg in pregnant or breastfeeding teenagers aged 14–18 years

There are exceptions to these limits, which only apply if a person’s doctor has not specified a different intake. Some people may have to take larger amounts of vitamin C for medical treatments.

Less commonly, people may experience severe side effects from taking too much vitamin C. Long term intake above the recommended levels increases the risk of these negative effects.

Possible health risks of taking too much vitamin C include:

Kidney stones

Doctors believe that too much vitamin C supplementation could result in a person excreting the compounds oxalate and uric acid in their urine. These compounds could lead to kidney stone formation.

The authors of a case study in the journal Kidney Internationalreported that a woman developed kidney stones after taking 4 g or more of vitamin C each day for 4 months.

However, researchers have not conducted any larger scale studies on vitamin C intake and kidney stone formation. They do know that people who have a history of kidney stones are more likely to form them if they take large amounts of vitamin C, according to the ODS .

Nutrient imbalances

Another concern regarding excessive vitamin C intake is that it can impair the body’s ability to process other nutrients.

For example, vitamin C may reduce the levels of vitamin B-12 and copper in the body.

The presence of vitamin C can also enhance iron absorption in the body, which could lead to excessively high levels.

Cause bone spurs

According to the Arthritis Foundation, one study found that the presence of very high vitamin C levels in the body increased the likelihood of a person developing painful bone spurs.

However, the Foundation also cited a research study that found that people with low levels of vitamin C had a higher risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, a painful inflammatory joint condition.

These findings emphasize the need for appropriate vitamin C supplementation that provides neither too much nor too little.

Impair the effectiveness of niacin-simvastatin

Evidence suggests that taking vitamin C supplements may impair the body’s ability to increase high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol in people taking the combination drug niacin-simvastatin. This drug combines the vitamin niacin with the statin simvastatin (Zocor), and people take it to treat high cholesterol.

Doctors consider HDL cholesterol the “good” cholesterol because it reduces the amount of harmful cholesterol in the blood.

If a person takes vitamin C supplements and niacin-simvastatin, they should talk to their doctor about ways to make each more effective. Doctors do not know whether vitamin C also affects the ability of other medicines similar to Zocor.

A person’s body cannot make vitamin C, so people need to eat enough foods that contain vitamin C to meet their daily needs. If someone is at risk of a vitamin C deficiency, they can take vitamin C supplements.

The ODS advise aiming for the following RDA of vitamin C each day:

AgeMaleFemale
1–3 years15 mg15 mg
4–8 years25 mg25 mg
9–13 years45 mg45 mg
14–18 years75 mg65 mg
19+ years90 mg75 mg

People who smoke should take 35 mg more vitamin C per day than those who do not smoke.

During pregnancy or when breastfeeding, women should get the following levels of vitamin C per day:

  • 14–18 years: 80 mg during pregnancy and 115 mg when breastfeeding
  • 19 years and older: 85 mg during pregnancy and 120 mg when breastfeeding

There is not enough research to suggest an RDA for vitamin C in those younger than 1 year of age. As a result, the ODS provide an “adequate intake,” which is the amount that is likely to be sufficient:


What happens when you take too much vitamin C?

Vitamin C is usually safe to take even at high dosages. However, people may sometimes experience mild side effects, such as digestive discomfort. Rarely, more serious side effects can occur.

Vitamin C is an essential vitamin for the human body. It is an antioxidant, and it helps with a range of important processes, including lowering blood pressure, fighting inflammation, and creating collagen.

In this article, we look at the recommended upper limits of vitamin C intake, possible side effects of taking too much, and other warnings.

Share on Pinterest It is usually safe to frequently eat foods high in vitamin C.

Frequently eating foods high in vitamin C should not lead to any health issues. Taking too much vitamin C through supplements can, however, cause side effects.

In adults, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin C is 90 milligrams (mg) for males and 75 mg for females.

Adults who take more than 2,000 mg of vitamin C per day may experience side effects.

When a person takes more than the recommended limit of vitamin C, they may experience mild digestive disturbances. These can occur if the vitamin C that the body does not absorb irritates the gastrointestinal tract.

Common mild side effects of too much vitamin C include:

The body does not absorb all of the vitamin C that it gets from supplements.

For example, if a person takes 30–180 mg of vitamin C each day, their body absorbs about 70–90% of this vitamin. If a person takes more than 1 gram (g) of vitamin C per day, the body absorbs less than 50% of the vitamin, which reduces the risk of negative side effects. The excess leaves the body in the urine.

As vitamin C can cause unpleasant symptoms if a person takes too much, the Food and Nutrition Board have established “tolerable upper intake levels.”

According to the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) , the upper limit for vitamin C intake in people aged 19 years and over is 2,000 mg in males and females. The limit remains the same for pregnant or breastfeeding women.

The upper daily vitamin C levels for children and infants are as follows:

  • 400 mg for infants aged 1–3 years
  • 650 mg for children aged 4–8 years
  • 1,200 mg for children aged 9–13 years
  • 1,800 mg for teenagers aged 14–18 years
  • 1,800 mg in pregnant or breastfeeding teenagers aged 14–18 years

There are exceptions to these limits, which only apply if a person’s doctor has not specified a different intake. Some people may have to take larger amounts of vitamin C for medical treatments.

Less commonly, people may experience severe side effects from taking too much vitamin C. Long term intake above the recommended levels increases the risk of these negative effects.

Possible health risks of taking too much vitamin C include:

Kidney stones

Doctors believe that too much vitamin C supplementation could result in a person excreting the compounds oxalate and uric acid in their urine. These compounds could lead to kidney stone formation.

The authors of a case study in the journal Kidney Internationalreported that a woman developed kidney stones after taking 4 g or more of vitamin C each day for 4 months.

However, researchers have not conducted any larger scale studies on vitamin C intake and kidney stone formation. They do know that people who have a history of kidney stones are more likely to form them if they take large amounts of vitamin C, according to the ODS .

Nutrient imbalances

Another concern regarding excessive vitamin C intake is that it can impair the body’s ability to process other nutrients.

For example, vitamin C may reduce the levels of vitamin B-12 and copper in the body.

The presence of vitamin C can also enhance iron absorption in the body, which could lead to excessively high levels.

Cause bone spurs

According to the Arthritis Foundation, one study found that the presence of very high vitamin C levels in the body increased the likelihood of a person developing painful bone spurs.

However, the Foundation also cited a research study that found that people with low levels of vitamin C had a higher risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, a painful inflammatory joint condition.

These findings emphasize the need for appropriate vitamin C supplementation that provides neither too much nor too little.

Impair the effectiveness of niacin-simvastatin

Evidence suggests that taking vitamin C supplements may impair the body’s ability to increase high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol in people taking the combination drug niacin-simvastatin. This drug combines the vitamin niacin with the statin simvastatin (Zocor), and people take it to treat high cholesterol.

Doctors consider HDL cholesterol the “good” cholesterol because it reduces the amount of harmful cholesterol in the blood.

If a person takes vitamin C supplements and niacin-simvastatin, they should talk to their doctor about ways to make each more effective. Doctors do not know whether vitamin C also affects the ability of other medicines similar to Zocor.

A person’s body cannot make vitamin C, so people need to eat enough foods that contain vitamin C to meet their daily needs. If someone is at risk of a vitamin C deficiency, they can take vitamin C supplements.

The ODS advise aiming for the following RDA of vitamin C each day:

AgeMaleFemale
1–3 years15 mg15 mg
4–8 years25 mg25 mg
9–13 years45 mg45 mg
14–18 years75 mg65 mg
19+ years90 mg75 mg

People who smoke should take 35 mg more vitamin C per day than those who do not smoke.

During pregnancy or when breastfeeding, women should get the following levels of vitamin C per day:

  • 14–18 years: 80 mg during pregnancy and 115 mg when breastfeeding
  • 19 years and older: 85 mg during pregnancy and 120 mg when breastfeeding

There is not enough research to suggest an RDA for vitamin C in those younger than 1 year of age. As a result, the ODS provide an “adequate intake,” which is the amount that is likely to be sufficient:


What happens when you take too much vitamin C?

Vitamin C is usually safe to take even at high dosages. However, people may sometimes experience mild side effects, such as digestive discomfort. Rarely, more serious side effects can occur.

Vitamin C is an essential vitamin for the human body. It is an antioxidant, and it helps with a range of important processes, including lowering blood pressure, fighting inflammation, and creating collagen.

In this article, we look at the recommended upper limits of vitamin C intake, possible side effects of taking too much, and other warnings.

Share on Pinterest It is usually safe to frequently eat foods high in vitamin C.

Frequently eating foods high in vitamin C should not lead to any health issues. Taking too much vitamin C through supplements can, however, cause side effects.

In adults, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin C is 90 milligrams (mg) for males and 75 mg for females.

Adults who take more than 2,000 mg of vitamin C per day may experience side effects.

When a person takes more than the recommended limit of vitamin C, they may experience mild digestive disturbances. These can occur if the vitamin C that the body does not absorb irritates the gastrointestinal tract.

Common mild side effects of too much vitamin C include:

The body does not absorb all of the vitamin C that it gets from supplements.

For example, if a person takes 30–180 mg of vitamin C each day, their body absorbs about 70–90% of this vitamin. If a person takes more than 1 gram (g) of vitamin C per day, the body absorbs less than 50% of the vitamin, which reduces the risk of negative side effects. The excess leaves the body in the urine.

As vitamin C can cause unpleasant symptoms if a person takes too much, the Food and Nutrition Board have established “tolerable upper intake levels.”

According to the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) , the upper limit for vitamin C intake in people aged 19 years and over is 2,000 mg in males and females. The limit remains the same for pregnant or breastfeeding women.

The upper daily vitamin C levels for children and infants are as follows:

  • 400 mg for infants aged 1–3 years
  • 650 mg for children aged 4–8 years
  • 1,200 mg for children aged 9–13 years
  • 1,800 mg for teenagers aged 14–18 years
  • 1,800 mg in pregnant or breastfeeding teenagers aged 14–18 years

There are exceptions to these limits, which only apply if a person’s doctor has not specified a different intake. Some people may have to take larger amounts of vitamin C for medical treatments.

Less commonly, people may experience severe side effects from taking too much vitamin C. Long term intake above the recommended levels increases the risk of these negative effects.

Possible health risks of taking too much vitamin C include:

Kidney stones

Doctors believe that too much vitamin C supplementation could result in a person excreting the compounds oxalate and uric acid in their urine. These compounds could lead to kidney stone formation.

The authors of a case study in the journal Kidney Internationalreported that a woman developed kidney stones after taking 4 g or more of vitamin C each day for 4 months.

However, researchers have not conducted any larger scale studies on vitamin C intake and kidney stone formation. They do know that people who have a history of kidney stones are more likely to form them if they take large amounts of vitamin C, according to the ODS .

Nutrient imbalances

Another concern regarding excessive vitamin C intake is that it can impair the body’s ability to process other nutrients.

For example, vitamin C may reduce the levels of vitamin B-12 and copper in the body.

The presence of vitamin C can also enhance iron absorption in the body, which could lead to excessively high levels.

Cause bone spurs

According to the Arthritis Foundation, one study found that the presence of very high vitamin C levels in the body increased the likelihood of a person developing painful bone spurs.

However, the Foundation also cited a research study that found that people with low levels of vitamin C had a higher risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, a painful inflammatory joint condition.

These findings emphasize the need for appropriate vitamin C supplementation that provides neither too much nor too little.

Impair the effectiveness of niacin-simvastatin

Evidence suggests that taking vitamin C supplements may impair the body’s ability to increase high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol in people taking the combination drug niacin-simvastatin. This drug combines the vitamin niacin with the statin simvastatin (Zocor), and people take it to treat high cholesterol.

Doctors consider HDL cholesterol the “good” cholesterol because it reduces the amount of harmful cholesterol in the blood.

If a person takes vitamin C supplements and niacin-simvastatin, they should talk to their doctor about ways to make each more effective. Doctors do not know whether vitamin C also affects the ability of other medicines similar to Zocor.

A person’s body cannot make vitamin C, so people need to eat enough foods that contain vitamin C to meet their daily needs. If someone is at risk of a vitamin C deficiency, they can take vitamin C supplements.

The ODS advise aiming for the following RDA of vitamin C each day:

AgeMaleFemale
1–3 years15 mg15 mg
4–8 years25 mg25 mg
9–13 years45 mg45 mg
14–18 years75 mg65 mg
19+ years90 mg75 mg

People who smoke should take 35 mg more vitamin C per day than those who do not smoke.

During pregnancy or when breastfeeding, women should get the following levels of vitamin C per day:

  • 14–18 years: 80 mg during pregnancy and 115 mg when breastfeeding
  • 19 years and older: 85 mg during pregnancy and 120 mg when breastfeeding

There is not enough research to suggest an RDA for vitamin C in those younger than 1 year of age. As a result, the ODS provide an “adequate intake,” which is the amount that is likely to be sufficient:


What happens when you take too much vitamin C?

Vitamin C is usually safe to take even at high dosages. However, people may sometimes experience mild side effects, such as digestive discomfort. Rarely, more serious side effects can occur.

Vitamin C is an essential vitamin for the human body. It is an antioxidant, and it helps with a range of important processes, including lowering blood pressure, fighting inflammation, and creating collagen.

In this article, we look at the recommended upper limits of vitamin C intake, possible side effects of taking too much, and other warnings.

Share on Pinterest It is usually safe to frequently eat foods high in vitamin C.

Frequently eating foods high in vitamin C should not lead to any health issues. Taking too much vitamin C through supplements can, however, cause side effects.

In adults, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin C is 90 milligrams (mg) for males and 75 mg for females.

Adults who take more than 2,000 mg of vitamin C per day may experience side effects.

When a person takes more than the recommended limit of vitamin C, they may experience mild digestive disturbances. These can occur if the vitamin C that the body does not absorb irritates the gastrointestinal tract.

Common mild side effects of too much vitamin C include:

The body does not absorb all of the vitamin C that it gets from supplements.

For example, if a person takes 30–180 mg of vitamin C each day, their body absorbs about 70–90% of this vitamin. If a person takes more than 1 gram (g) of vitamin C per day, the body absorbs less than 50% of the vitamin, which reduces the risk of negative side effects. The excess leaves the body in the urine.

As vitamin C can cause unpleasant symptoms if a person takes too much, the Food and Nutrition Board have established “tolerable upper intake levels.”

According to the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) , the upper limit for vitamin C intake in people aged 19 years and over is 2,000 mg in males and females. The limit remains the same for pregnant or breastfeeding women.

The upper daily vitamin C levels for children and infants are as follows:

  • 400 mg for infants aged 1–3 years
  • 650 mg for children aged 4–8 years
  • 1,200 mg for children aged 9–13 years
  • 1,800 mg for teenagers aged 14–18 years
  • 1,800 mg in pregnant or breastfeeding teenagers aged 14–18 years

There are exceptions to these limits, which only apply if a person’s doctor has not specified a different intake. Some people may have to take larger amounts of vitamin C for medical treatments.

Less commonly, people may experience severe side effects from taking too much vitamin C. Long term intake above the recommended levels increases the risk of these negative effects.

Possible health risks of taking too much vitamin C include:

Kidney stones

Doctors believe that too much vitamin C supplementation could result in a person excreting the compounds oxalate and uric acid in their urine. These compounds could lead to kidney stone formation.

The authors of a case study in the journal Kidney Internationalreported that a woman developed kidney stones after taking 4 g or more of vitamin C each day for 4 months.

However, researchers have not conducted any larger scale studies on vitamin C intake and kidney stone formation. They do know that people who have a history of kidney stones are more likely to form them if they take large amounts of vitamin C, according to the ODS .

Nutrient imbalances

Another concern regarding excessive vitamin C intake is that it can impair the body’s ability to process other nutrients.

For example, vitamin C may reduce the levels of vitamin B-12 and copper in the body.

The presence of vitamin C can also enhance iron absorption in the body, which could lead to excessively high levels.

Cause bone spurs

According to the Arthritis Foundation, one study found that the presence of very high vitamin C levels in the body increased the likelihood of a person developing painful bone spurs.

However, the Foundation also cited a research study that found that people with low levels of vitamin C had a higher risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, a painful inflammatory joint condition.

These findings emphasize the need for appropriate vitamin C supplementation that provides neither too much nor too little.

Impair the effectiveness of niacin-simvastatin

Evidence suggests that taking vitamin C supplements may impair the body’s ability to increase high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol in people taking the combination drug niacin-simvastatin. This drug combines the vitamin niacin with the statin simvastatin (Zocor), and people take it to treat high cholesterol.

Doctors consider HDL cholesterol the “good” cholesterol because it reduces the amount of harmful cholesterol in the blood.

If a person takes vitamin C supplements and niacin-simvastatin, they should talk to their doctor about ways to make each more effective. Doctors do not know whether vitamin C also affects the ability of other medicines similar to Zocor.

A person’s body cannot make vitamin C, so people need to eat enough foods that contain vitamin C to meet their daily needs. If someone is at risk of a vitamin C deficiency, they can take vitamin C supplements.

The ODS advise aiming for the following RDA of vitamin C each day:

AgeMaleFemale
1–3 years15 mg15 mg
4–8 years25 mg25 mg
9–13 years45 mg45 mg
14–18 years75 mg65 mg
19+ years90 mg75 mg

People who smoke should take 35 mg more vitamin C per day than those who do not smoke.

During pregnancy or when breastfeeding, women should get the following levels of vitamin C per day:

  • 14–18 years: 80 mg during pregnancy and 115 mg when breastfeeding
  • 19 years and older: 85 mg during pregnancy and 120 mg when breastfeeding

There is not enough research to suggest an RDA for vitamin C in those younger than 1 year of age. As a result, the ODS provide an “adequate intake,” which is the amount that is likely to be sufficient:


What happens when you take too much vitamin C?

Vitamin C is usually safe to take even at high dosages. However, people may sometimes experience mild side effects, such as digestive discomfort. Rarely, more serious side effects can occur.

Vitamin C is an essential vitamin for the human body. It is an antioxidant, and it helps with a range of important processes, including lowering blood pressure, fighting inflammation, and creating collagen.

In this article, we look at the recommended upper limits of vitamin C intake, possible side effects of taking too much, and other warnings.

Share on Pinterest It is usually safe to frequently eat foods high in vitamin C.

Frequently eating foods high in vitamin C should not lead to any health issues. Taking too much vitamin C through supplements can, however, cause side effects.

In adults, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin C is 90 milligrams (mg) for males and 75 mg for females.

Adults who take more than 2,000 mg of vitamin C per day may experience side effects.

When a person takes more than the recommended limit of vitamin C, they may experience mild digestive disturbances. These can occur if the vitamin C that the body does not absorb irritates the gastrointestinal tract.

Common mild side effects of too much vitamin C include:

The body does not absorb all of the vitamin C that it gets from supplements.

For example, if a person takes 30–180 mg of vitamin C each day, their body absorbs about 70–90% of this vitamin. If a person takes more than 1 gram (g) of vitamin C per day, the body absorbs less than 50% of the vitamin, which reduces the risk of negative side effects. The excess leaves the body in the urine.

As vitamin C can cause unpleasant symptoms if a person takes too much, the Food and Nutrition Board have established “tolerable upper intake levels.”

According to the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) , the upper limit for vitamin C intake in people aged 19 years and over is 2,000 mg in males and females. The limit remains the same for pregnant or breastfeeding women.

The upper daily vitamin C levels for children and infants are as follows:

  • 400 mg for infants aged 1–3 years
  • 650 mg for children aged 4–8 years
  • 1,200 mg for children aged 9–13 years
  • 1,800 mg for teenagers aged 14–18 years
  • 1,800 mg in pregnant or breastfeeding teenagers aged 14–18 years

There are exceptions to these limits, which only apply if a person’s doctor has not specified a different intake. Some people may have to take larger amounts of vitamin C for medical treatments.

Less commonly, people may experience severe side effects from taking too much vitamin C. Long term intake above the recommended levels increases the risk of these negative effects.

Possible health risks of taking too much vitamin C include:

Kidney stones

Doctors believe that too much vitamin C supplementation could result in a person excreting the compounds oxalate and uric acid in their urine. These compounds could lead to kidney stone formation.

The authors of a case study in the journal Kidney Internationalreported that a woman developed kidney stones after taking 4 g or more of vitamin C each day for 4 months.

However, researchers have not conducted any larger scale studies on vitamin C intake and kidney stone formation. They do know that people who have a history of kidney stones are more likely to form them if they take large amounts of vitamin C, according to the ODS .

Nutrient imbalances

Another concern regarding excessive vitamin C intake is that it can impair the body’s ability to process other nutrients.

For example, vitamin C may reduce the levels of vitamin B-12 and copper in the body.

The presence of vitamin C can also enhance iron absorption in the body, which could lead to excessively high levels.

Cause bone spurs

According to the Arthritis Foundation, one study found that the presence of very high vitamin C levels in the body increased the likelihood of a person developing painful bone spurs.

However, the Foundation also cited a research study that found that people with low levels of vitamin C had a higher risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, a painful inflammatory joint condition.

These findings emphasize the need for appropriate vitamin C supplementation that provides neither too much nor too little.

Impair the effectiveness of niacin-simvastatin

Evidence suggests that taking vitamin C supplements may impair the body’s ability to increase high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol in people taking the combination drug niacin-simvastatin. This drug combines the vitamin niacin with the statin simvastatin (Zocor), and people take it to treat high cholesterol.

Doctors consider HDL cholesterol the “good” cholesterol because it reduces the amount of harmful cholesterol in the blood.

If a person takes vitamin C supplements and niacin-simvastatin, they should talk to their doctor about ways to make each more effective. Doctors do not know whether vitamin C also affects the ability of other medicines similar to Zocor.

A person’s body cannot make vitamin C, so people need to eat enough foods that contain vitamin C to meet their daily needs. If someone is at risk of a vitamin C deficiency, they can take vitamin C supplements.

The ODS advise aiming for the following RDA of vitamin C each day:

AgeMaleFemale
1–3 years15 mg15 mg
4–8 years25 mg25 mg
9–13 years45 mg45 mg
14–18 years75 mg65 mg
19+ years90 mg75 mg

People who smoke should take 35 mg more vitamin C per day than those who do not smoke.

During pregnancy or when breastfeeding, women should get the following levels of vitamin C per day:

  • 14–18 years: 80 mg during pregnancy and 115 mg when breastfeeding
  • 19 years and older: 85 mg during pregnancy and 120 mg when breastfeeding

There is not enough research to suggest an RDA for vitamin C in those younger than 1 year of age. As a result, the ODS provide an “adequate intake,” which is the amount that is likely to be sufficient:


What happens when you take too much vitamin C?

Vitamin C is usually safe to take even at high dosages. However, people may sometimes experience mild side effects, such as digestive discomfort. Rarely, more serious side effects can occur.

Vitamin C is an essential vitamin for the human body. It is an antioxidant, and it helps with a range of important processes, including lowering blood pressure, fighting inflammation, and creating collagen.

In this article, we look at the recommended upper limits of vitamin C intake, possible side effects of taking too much, and other warnings.

Share on Pinterest It is usually safe to frequently eat foods high in vitamin C.

Frequently eating foods high in vitamin C should not lead to any health issues. Taking too much vitamin C through supplements can, however, cause side effects.

In adults, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin C is 90 milligrams (mg) for males and 75 mg for females.

Adults who take more than 2,000 mg of vitamin C per day may experience side effects.

When a person takes more than the recommended limit of vitamin C, they may experience mild digestive disturbances. These can occur if the vitamin C that the body does not absorb irritates the gastrointestinal tract.

Common mild side effects of too much vitamin C include:

The body does not absorb all of the vitamin C that it gets from supplements.

For example, if a person takes 30–180 mg of vitamin C each day, their body absorbs about 70–90% of this vitamin. If a person takes more than 1 gram (g) of vitamin C per day, the body absorbs less than 50% of the vitamin, which reduces the risk of negative side effects. The excess leaves the body in the urine.

As vitamin C can cause unpleasant symptoms if a person takes too much, the Food and Nutrition Board have established “tolerable upper intake levels.”

According to the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) , the upper limit for vitamin C intake in people aged 19 years and over is 2,000 mg in males and females. The limit remains the same for pregnant or breastfeeding women.

The upper daily vitamin C levels for children and infants are as follows:

  • 400 mg for infants aged 1–3 years
  • 650 mg for children aged 4–8 years
  • 1,200 mg for children aged 9–13 years
  • 1,800 mg for teenagers aged 14–18 years
  • 1,800 mg in pregnant or breastfeeding teenagers aged 14–18 years

There are exceptions to these limits, which only apply if a person’s doctor has not specified a different intake. Some people may have to take larger amounts of vitamin C for medical treatments.

Less commonly, people may experience severe side effects from taking too much vitamin C. Long term intake above the recommended levels increases the risk of these negative effects.

Possible health risks of taking too much vitamin C include:

Kidney stones

Doctors believe that too much vitamin C supplementation could result in a person excreting the compounds oxalate and uric acid in their urine. These compounds could lead to kidney stone formation.

The authors of a case study in the journal Kidney Internationalreported that a woman developed kidney stones after taking 4 g or more of vitamin C each day for 4 months.

However, researchers have not conducted any larger scale studies on vitamin C intake and kidney stone formation. They do know that people who have a history of kidney stones are more likely to form them if they take large amounts of vitamin C, according to the ODS .

Nutrient imbalances

Another concern regarding excessive vitamin C intake is that it can impair the body’s ability to process other nutrients.

For example, vitamin C may reduce the levels of vitamin B-12 and copper in the body.

The presence of vitamin C can also enhance iron absorption in the body, which could lead to excessively high levels.

Cause bone spurs

According to the Arthritis Foundation, one study found that the presence of very high vitamin C levels in the body increased the likelihood of a person developing painful bone spurs.

However, the Foundation also cited a research study that found that people with low levels of vitamin C had a higher risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, a painful inflammatory joint condition.

These findings emphasize the need for appropriate vitamin C supplementation that provides neither too much nor too little.

Impair the effectiveness of niacin-simvastatin

Evidence suggests that taking vitamin C supplements may impair the body’s ability to increase high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol in people taking the combination drug niacin-simvastatin. This drug combines the vitamin niacin with the statin simvastatin (Zocor), and people take it to treat high cholesterol.

Doctors consider HDL cholesterol the “good” cholesterol because it reduces the amount of harmful cholesterol in the blood.

If a person takes vitamin C supplements and niacin-simvastatin, they should talk to their doctor about ways to make each more effective. Doctors do not know whether vitamin C also affects the ability of other medicines similar to Zocor.

A person’s body cannot make vitamin C, so people need to eat enough foods that contain vitamin C to meet their daily needs. If someone is at risk of a vitamin C deficiency, they can take vitamin C supplements.

The ODS advise aiming for the following RDA of vitamin C each day:

AgeMaleFemale
1–3 years15 mg15 mg
4–8 years25 mg25 mg
9–13 years45 mg45 mg
14–18 years75 mg65 mg
19+ years90 mg75 mg

People who smoke should take 35 mg more vitamin C per day than those who do not smoke.

During pregnancy or when breastfeeding, women should get the following levels of vitamin C per day:

  • 14–18 years: 80 mg during pregnancy and 115 mg when breastfeeding
  • 19 years and older: 85 mg during pregnancy and 120 mg when breastfeeding

There is not enough research to suggest an RDA for vitamin C in those younger than 1 year of age. As a result, the ODS provide an “adequate intake,” which is the amount that is likely to be sufficient:


What happens when you take too much vitamin C?

Vitamin C is usually safe to take even at high dosages. However, people may sometimes experience mild side effects, such as digestive discomfort. Rarely, more serious side effects can occur.

Vitamin C is an essential vitamin for the human body. It is an antioxidant, and it helps with a range of important processes, including lowering blood pressure, fighting inflammation, and creating collagen.

In this article, we look at the recommended upper limits of vitamin C intake, possible side effects of taking too much, and other warnings.

Share on Pinterest It is usually safe to frequently eat foods high in vitamin C.

Frequently eating foods high in vitamin C should not lead to any health issues. Taking too much vitamin C through supplements can, however, cause side effects.

In adults, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin C is 90 milligrams (mg) for males and 75 mg for females.

Adults who take more than 2,000 mg of vitamin C per day may experience side effects.

When a person takes more than the recommended limit of vitamin C, they may experience mild digestive disturbances. These can occur if the vitamin C that the body does not absorb irritates the gastrointestinal tract.

Common mild side effects of too much vitamin C include:

The body does not absorb all of the vitamin C that it gets from supplements.

For example, if a person takes 30–180 mg of vitamin C each day, their body absorbs about 70–90% of this vitamin. If a person takes more than 1 gram (g) of vitamin C per day, the body absorbs less than 50% of the vitamin, which reduces the risk of negative side effects. The excess leaves the body in the urine.

As vitamin C can cause unpleasant symptoms if a person takes too much, the Food and Nutrition Board have established “tolerable upper intake levels.”

According to the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) , the upper limit for vitamin C intake in people aged 19 years and over is 2,000 mg in males and females. The limit remains the same for pregnant or breastfeeding women.

The upper daily vitamin C levels for children and infants are as follows:

  • 400 mg for infants aged 1–3 years
  • 650 mg for children aged 4–8 years
  • 1,200 mg for children aged 9–13 years
  • 1,800 mg for teenagers aged 14–18 years
  • 1,800 mg in pregnant or breastfeeding teenagers aged 14–18 years

There are exceptions to these limits, which only apply if a person’s doctor has not specified a different intake. Some people may have to take larger amounts of vitamin C for medical treatments.

Less commonly, people may experience severe side effects from taking too much vitamin C. Long term intake above the recommended levels increases the risk of these negative effects.

Possible health risks of taking too much vitamin C include:

Kidney stones

Doctors believe that too much vitamin C supplementation could result in a person excreting the compounds oxalate and uric acid in their urine. These compounds could lead to kidney stone formation.

The authors of a case study in the journal Kidney Internationalreported that a woman developed kidney stones after taking 4 g or more of vitamin C each day for 4 months.

However, researchers have not conducted any larger scale studies on vitamin C intake and kidney stone formation. They do know that people who have a history of kidney stones are more likely to form them if they take large amounts of vitamin C, according to the ODS .

Nutrient imbalances

Another concern regarding excessive vitamin C intake is that it can impair the body’s ability to process other nutrients.

For example, vitamin C may reduce the levels of vitamin B-12 and copper in the body.

The presence of vitamin C can also enhance iron absorption in the body, which could lead to excessively high levels.

Cause bone spurs

According to the Arthritis Foundation, one study found that the presence of very high vitamin C levels in the body increased the likelihood of a person developing painful bone spurs.

However, the Foundation also cited a research study that found that people with low levels of vitamin C had a higher risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, a painful inflammatory joint condition.

These findings emphasize the need for appropriate vitamin C supplementation that provides neither too much nor too little.

Impair the effectiveness of niacin-simvastatin

Evidence suggests that taking vitamin C supplements may impair the body’s ability to increase high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol in people taking the combination drug niacin-simvastatin. This drug combines the vitamin niacin with the statin simvastatin (Zocor), and people take it to treat high cholesterol.

Doctors consider HDL cholesterol the “good” cholesterol because it reduces the amount of harmful cholesterol in the blood.

If a person takes vitamin C supplements and niacin-simvastatin, they should talk to their doctor about ways to make each more effective. Doctors do not know whether vitamin C also affects the ability of other medicines similar to Zocor.

A person’s body cannot make vitamin C, so people need to eat enough foods that contain vitamin C to meet their daily needs. If someone is at risk of a vitamin C deficiency, they can take vitamin C supplements.

The ODS advise aiming for the following RDA of vitamin C each day:

AgeMaleFemale
1–3 years15 mg15 mg
4–8 years25 mg25 mg
9–13 years45 mg45 mg
14–18 years75 mg65 mg
19+ years90 mg75 mg

People who smoke should take 35 mg more vitamin C per day than those who do not smoke.

During pregnancy or when breastfeeding, women should get the following levels of vitamin C per day:

  • 14–18 years: 80 mg during pregnancy and 115 mg when breastfeeding
  • 19 years and older: 85 mg during pregnancy and 120 mg when breastfeeding

There is not enough research to suggest an RDA for vitamin C in those younger than 1 year of age. As a result, the ODS provide an “adequate intake,” which is the amount that is likely to be sufficient:


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