Vitamin C Does Not Cause Kidney Stones

We were just discussing the possibility that Vitamin C lowers intraocular pressure. In that discussion, someone raised the question about Vitamin C and kidney stones. I researched this topic recently by carefully reading some of the newest peer review research that claims Vitamin C does cause kidney stones. A careful review shows that this claim is not substantiated. During my research, I ran across The Vitamin C Foundation Forums. I want to refer anyone with questions about Vitamin C and kidney stones to two forum threads (here and here).

I will quote just one exchange to give you a taste of the conclusion.

Cardiologist Says Vitamin C Will Damage Kidney  
My cardiologist was alarmed when I told him of the high dose of vitamin C I've been taking. He says it could cause kidney damage and strongly recommended against it. I haven't been able to find anything on the Web about this. Just curious as to your thoughts on this. I have no plans to quit taking my Pauling Therapy (as Heart Technology).

Medical Textbooks are Simply Wrong  
The nicest thing we can say is that your cardiologist isn't making this up out of thin air. Medical textbooks actually list kidney damage (oxalate production) as a possible (theoretical) side effect of taking vitamin C!?!

Doctors are taught that vitamin C may cause kidney stones, and the hospitals are filled with cardiovascular patients.

This erroneous information is one reason Linus Pauling took an interest and began writing his books on vitamin C. HOW TO LIVE LONGER AND FEEL BETTER (1986) has a good treatment of the kidney stone issue.

Perhaps the best defense against such a charge is Dr. Thomas Levy's book Vitamin C, Infectious Diseases and Toxins (2002). I doubt your doctor would read it, but, Dr. Levy is also a lawyer. His book is written to be useful in court as a counter to much misinformation that is taught in medical schools.

There is a highly theoretical argument, but there have been no studies that have ever demonstrated the effect. In fact, Dr. Catchart who has treated over 20,000 patients with high vitamin C has yet to see a single kidney stone and believes vitamin C is protective against stones. Also a recent study of 85,000 nurses showed no correlation between vitamin C and kidney stones (but did correlate low vitamin B6).

If you want to ruin your kidneys, take common over the counter NSAIDS without vitamin C.

Owen R. Fonorow

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