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Vitamin C prevents but doesn’t cure diseases like coronavirus—medic

By: - Reporter / @KHallareINQ
/ 08:36 PM February 07, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — A medical consultant on Friday reminded the public that although taking Vitamin C could prevent contracting diseases such as the 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), it does not cure it.

The nCoV has already claimed the lives of 636 people in China.

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In an event launched by Stada Philippines in Taguig City, medical consultant Dr. Antonio Ligsay said that Vitamin C “prevents whatever virus.”

“Kasi anti-oxidants siya [Because it’s an anti-oxidant],” Ligsay said about taking Vitamin C. “As I said, it is not the treatment. It just prevents the spread.”

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“It can also boost the immune system,” he later added.

Vitamin C is also known as ascorbic acid, which is present in most fruits and vegetables. It can also come in tablet or syrup form of medicine.

There are two types of Vitamin C that are taken externally: ascorbic acid and sodium ascorbate.

Citing a study released by Cochrane Collaboration, which studied if Vitamin C can prevent and cure a common cold, Ligsay said the researchers found supplementation of Vitamin C “failed to reduce the incidence of colds in the normal population.”

A coronavirus, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), causes illnesses such as the common cold to more severe diseases such as the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV), Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV) and the new strain, the 2019-nCoV.

“Pag wala kang sakit, ‘pag wala kang risk factor, [If you’re not sick, if you don’t have a risk factor] it’s not going to work,” Ligsay explained.

However, he added that the study also found: “When you’re exposed to a brief period of physical stress, it seems that it shows clinically significant, statistically significant, that Vitamin C in supplementation, will reduce the incidence of the common cold when you’re in a stressful condition.”

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In another study conducted by the same researchers from Cochrane Collaboration, Ligsay said that while Vitamin C was proven to prevent the common cold, it showed that it could not prevent pneumonia.

The WHO said that if the 2019-nCoV becomes more severe, it can lead to pneumonia or breathing difficulties.

Ligsay said that aside from taking Vitamin C, a healthy lifestyle, such as proper diet, adequate sleep and regular exercise, is needed to prevent such diseases.

Asked if Vitamin C will be the next product of panic buyers following the 2019-nCoV rage, Ligsay answered: “Panic buying, because of what’s happening with us right now, as I said sa evidence na pinakita ko, pagka-meron ka nang sakit, the evidence didn’t show that it was good.” 

(As I said with the evidence that I showed, if you’re already sick, it does not show that it was good.)

“Dapat continuously taking siya, kasi bumababa ang levels natin. And supplements nga siya, [It should be taken continuously, because our levels go down. and it’s a supplement] it helps but it is not the trick,” the medical consultant added. 

“Pagka-hindi mo ginawa yung [If you didn’t do the things] like diet, exercise, enough sleep, then the amount of Vitamin C can help.”

Edited by JPV
TOPICS: Antonio Ligsay, novel coronavirus, Vitamin C
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