If you have diabetes, take a cruise to your local Aisle of Produce and capture some high-C treasures like kiwifruit, strawberries, sweet red peppers, broccoli and oranges. Here’s why: An Italian study of adult-onset diabetics found that those who took 1,000 milligrams of vitamin C supplements daily for four months had lower levels of total and LDL cholesterol, triglycerides and fasting insulin (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, vol. 14, no. 4).
“Though we need more confirming studies that vitamin C helps, I personally believe future work will prove it has an effect,” says diabetes expert Stanley Mirsky, M.D., Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, New York, author of Controlling Diabetes the Easy Way (Random House). For his own patients, he advises making high-C foods menu staples plus taking a C supplement. If you decide to try extra vitamin C, its recommend supplements up to 500 mg. (equal to six oranges) for everyone, not just those with diabetes. Tip: To maintain maximum blood levels of C around the clock, a recent study suggests we need to take 500 mg. twice a day, roughly 12 hours apart.