Perhaps you have noticed that iron food supplements almost always contain ascorbic acid (vitamin C) in its synthetic form. Vitamin C contributes to iron absorption and, thus plays an important role in iron food supplements. You can also find Acerola cherry pills and powder in food supplements as these are natural sources of vitamin C. Nôgel´s iron food supplements contain freeze-dried Acerola cherry powder.
What is the difference between synthetic ascorbic acid and natural Acerola cherry powder?
Synthetic ascorbic acid is almost always produced from fermented corn syrup, which is genetically modified. Almost 80% of synthetic ascorbic acid used in food supplements is produced in China. Corn syrup itself does not contain vitamin C but one method to produce ascorbic acid from it is to process it with acetone. Different methods are used for producing ascorbic acid, and glucose and fermentation are the basis of all of these methods. It has been found in scientific research that regular consumption of ascorbic acid among men increases the risk of kidney stones . It has also been found that consuming 1000-2000 mg of ascorbic acid a day increases urinary oxalate and, therefore, increases the risk of kidney stones among both men and women . For some people, synthetic ascorbic acid can cause headaches, diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal cramps and heartburn but this tends to happen only when large amounts are consumed.
Acerola cherries grow mainly in Brazil and they contain a lot of natural vitamin C. Acerola vitamin C supplements, in both pill and powder form, have been available in pharmacies and shops for many years already. 100 grams of freeze-dried Acerola cherry powder contains about 15,000-20,000 milligrams of natural vitamin C.
For example, in Estonia, the daily recommended allowance for vitamin C is 80 mg. This is the minimum amount to be consumed. The maximum safe daily amount is up to 2000 mg. As vitamin C is water-soluble, it is not stored to the body, and therefore, there are no risks related to over-consumption, unlike with oil-soluble vitamins like vitamin D. You definitely shouldn´t worry about consuming too much vitamin C when eating a lot of berries and vegetables. This is natural vitamin C and your stomach will let you know when you are full!
In addition to vitamin C, Acerola cherry powder also contains carotenoids, antioxidants like anthocyanins, bioflavonoids, different macro and micro nutrients and vitamins. Although no considerable different has been found in the absorption of synthetic ascorbic acid and natural vitamin C, natural vitamin C sources are recommended. When choosing natural vitamin C, your body also gets many other useful nutrients vitamins! This is the reason why Nôgel´s iron food supplements contain freeze-dried Acerola cherry powder – to contribute to better iron absorption in a natural way! In our iron syrup for children, we use organic juice concentrate as a natural vitamin C source. The content of vitamin C has been analyzed in laboratory.
 Massey et al. Ascorbate increases human oxaluria and kidney stone risk. J Nutr. 2005 Jul;135(7):1673-7 Ferraro et al. Total, Dietary, and Supplemental Vitamin C Intake and Risk of Incident Kidney Stones. Am J Kidney Dis. 2016 Mar67(3):400-7