Summer is over and autumn is coming. Schools have started and running noses, the flu and allergies are also on their way.
I had always been the first one to catch a viral infection, whether it was a common cold or the flu. It was the year 2016. My family and I had moved to Spain. I hoped things would be better in a Mediterranean climate, but it wasn’t. In fact, they became worse than they had ever been.
That winter I was down with a bug five times. I’d lost a lot of weight and I felt very weak. I decided to make an appointment with my doctor. She ran some tests and after a few weeks I went back for the results. She told me that everything was good and according to her my problem must be stress related.
If I had left it to that, my life would have been very different from what it is today.
I knew something must have been going on in my body. Every person is different; some people I know seem to have very strong immune systems and are rarely ill. Obviously my immune system wasn’t that strong. In my search on how to strengthen my own immune system I discovered some very interesting books.
One of them has changed my life forever.
In that book I have discovered something simple, inexpensive, harmless and remarkably effective. Since I had no other options (now I know, it should have been my first option to try it) and these authors seemed experts in this area I decided to give it a shot.
Ever since I’ve integrated this simple method in my life, I haven’t had the flu. Not even a running nose or cough. And my hay fever is gone. What it is?
We all know vitamin C is good for us. We eat oranges and squeeze lemon in our water every once in a while. Most people I know take 1000 mg daily according to the RDA (Recommended Dietary Allowance). This level of intake prevents sickness and death in short-term but has little relevance in disease prevention. If you want to prevent yourself from getting ill, you need an optimal intake. An optimal intake is the amount of vitamin C that is close to your maximum absorption.
Every person is biologically unique and it is impossible to specify a single intake for a large group of people. The age and stage of someone’s health also influences the required intake. Some healthy people tolerate 2000 mg of vitamin C but when they are stressed or ill, they tolerate a 50- fold or even a 100-fold. If you want to prevent yourself from a running nose or the flu (or any other nasty diseases for that matter; read “Vitamin C: The Real Story“) you have to establish your own level of vitamin C intake.
Here’s how you do it:
Start with a low dose of vitamin C and repeat it every hour until you experience some bowel movement (gas, distention and loose stools). This level of intake is your bowel tolerance level. The optimal intake is 50-90% of this maximum. Note that consuming a lot of carbs can interfere with the bowel tolerance test and indicate a lower limit. Your daily intake should be your optimal intake.
If you feel you’re getting a cold of you’ve got the first sign of the flu, your intake should be at therapeutic level. Take it in frequent dosages to bowel tolerance level. The Vitamin C Foundation recommends taking at least 8000 mg of vitamin C every 20 minutes for 3-4 hours until bowel tolerance. The major side effect of vitamin C overload is an unmistakable diarrhea. This indicates absolute saturation. The therapeutic level is the highest amount that will not give you diarrhea.
In Linus Paulings book: “How to Live Longer and Feel Better”, Dr. Cathcart has provided estimates of the amount to reach bowel tolerance in various diseases. These values range from 30.000 milligrams for a mild cold up to 200.000 milligrams for a viral pneumonia. An individual’s bowel tolerance level indicates the severity of the illness.
As Linus Pauling has described: “ You must remember, too, to be on the lookout for the first symptoms of the cold and to be prepared to take immediate action. If you wait a day, or even a few hours, and if you take too small an amount of the vitamin C, the cold may reach the stage where it cannot be stopped.”
Let autumn begin!
Photo by Jeremy Thomas on Unsplash