Low amounts of vitamin C correlates with increased body fat and waist measurements. Nutrition researchers at Arizona State University report that the amount of vitamin C in the blood is directly related to fat oxidation during both exercise and at rest.
The study shows that those who consume adequate quantities of vitamin C oxidize 30% more fat while doing normal exercises than individuals with an inadequate quantity of Vitamin C consumption.
The research however, does not imply that vitamin C can be considered the new remedy for obesity and the new means of causing weight loss. Rather, it establishes that consuming insufficient quantities of vitamin C is liable to hamper any efforts of weight loss.
Before beginning a controlled four-week diet, 20 obese men and women were randomized by gender and body weight into a Vitamin C group, taking a 500 mg vitamin C daily and a control group taking a placebo. All participants consumed a diet adjusted to promote slow weight loss. The diet contained 67% of the RDA for vitamin C.
At the beginning of the study, participants with the lowest blood concentrations of vitamin C exhibited a higher body fat mass and tended not to oxidize fat well compared to their less obese counterparts. As the participants moved through the four week diet, with a steady amount of vitamin C being consumed, blood vitamin C concentrations increased 30 percent in those taking vitamins and fell 27 percent in the control group whose only vitamin C intake was the 67 percent of the USRDA contained in the food. As vitamin C blood concentrations fell, so did the participants’ ability to oxidize fat.
Vitamin C is an essential cofactor for the biosynthesis of a small protein-like molecule known as carnitine. Carnitine functions to shuttle fat molecules to the site of fat oxidation in tissue cells. When cells do not have access to fat molecules, feelings of fatigue ensue since energy metabolism is affected. Moreover, fat tends to accumulate in tissues when carnitine concentrations are reduced.