Vitamin C elevates red blood cell glutathione in healthy adults

Carol Johnston, Claudia G. Meyer, J. C. Srilakshmi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

95 Scopus citations

Abstract

We examined the effect of supplemental ascorbic acid on red blood cell glutathione. Subjects consumed self-selected vitamin C-restricted diets, and, under double-blind conditions, ingested placebo daily for week 1 (baseline). 500 mg L-ascorbate/d for weeks 2-3, 2000 mg L-ascorbate/d for weeks 4-5. and placebo daily for week 6 (withdraw). Mean red blood cell glutathione rose nearly 50% (P < 0.05) after the 500-mg period compared with baseline, and the changes from baseline for individual subjects ranged from +8% to +84%. However, the increases in plasma vitamin C and red blood cell glutathione were not correlated (r = 0.22). At the 2000-mg dosage, mean red blood cell glutathione was not significantly different from the value obtained at the 500-mg dosage. After the placebo-controlled withdraw period, red blood cell glutathione did not differ from baseline. These data indicate that vitamin C supplementation (500 mg/d) maintains reduced glutathione concentrations in blood and improves the overall antioxidant protection capacity of blood.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)103-105
Number of pages3
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Volume58
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1993

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Keywords

  • Antioxidants
  • Ascorbic acid
  • Glutathione
  • Red blood cell lytic sensitivity
  • Vitamin C

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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