The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog ran from 2006 to 2016 and was intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

  • Recent Posts

  • Recent Comments

    Vitamin C, stress, and the risk of infection

    Prolonged physical exertion and environmental stress may depress immune cell function and increase the risk of an upper respiratory tract infection (URTI).

    Researchers from Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia studied the response to vitamin C under these conditions.

    First, the details.

    • 12 participants were randomly assigned to a treatment group.
      • 1500 mg of vitamin C per day for 12 days
      • Placebo
    • They performed about 120 minutes of cycling at 54% VO2max (aerobic capacity) in a 35° C and 13% relative humidity environment.
    • Saliva samples were collected before, after, and 72 hours after exercise.
    • Health logs of URTI symptoms were completed for 7 days post-exercise.
    • Testing was completed at baseline, then following acute (1 day) and short-term (8 day) vitamin C supplementation.
    • Neither the participants nor researchers knew the treatment — double-blind.

    And, the results.

    • Postexercise cortisol (as a marker of stress) declined significantly in the vitamin C group.
    • There were no changes in s-IgA (immunity) or in URTI symptoms between groups.

    The bottom line?
    It’s possible to lower stress with vitamin C under these conditions, but not URTI symptoms.

    2/19/09 18:40 JR

    Comments are closed.