Szent-Györgyi was awarded the Nobel prize for the discovery of Vitamin C in the 1930s. He was working in Hungary with paprika, which, like citrus, contained something that was known to cure scurvy. He demonstrated that the active material in the paprika was ascorbic acid. The pharmacuetical industry was ecstatic because they could synthesise this and produce it in large quantities.
When Szent-Györgyi took this further distilling and extracting crystalline ascorbic acid to try on his on patients with scurvy, he expected a strong reaction. But it did nothing. The concentrated whole foods he had used in his research were far more effective.
He realised that although ascorbic acid is the active part of Vitamin C, it does not work on its own. He rightly attributed this to complex food factors such as bioflavonoids. Sadly, the industry paid no attention to this.
The form and dose of micronutrient supplementation is of crucial importance. Many health professionals believe that different forms of vitamins and minerals are the same, but isolates and food nutrients:
- Have different structures
- Use different metabolic pathways
- Function differently in the body.
We need our vitamins and minerals as food or in a food form.