Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is a compound that serves many purposes in the human body. Because of this, many researchers have questioned whether vitamin C has a direct effect on THC levels. Let’s explore this concept and discuss the interaction between vitamin C and THC in further detail.
What is vitamin C?
Everyone has heard of vitamin C, and we all know that it’s an important nutrient that can only be obtained from our diet. But what is vitamin C exactly and why do we need it?
Vitamin C is an antioxidant and an essential organic compound that must be included in every diet. People who do not have enough vitamin C in their diet develop a condition known as scurvy. The common symptoms of scurvy include weakness, fatigue, bruising, and bleeding gums.
Scurvy was prevalent in sailors throughout history because they didn’t have access to fresh fruits and vegetables while they were out at sea. As a remedy, citrus fruits such as limes and oranges began being recommended in the early 1800s because they contain high doses of vitamin C.
Vitamin C is essential because it has a range of important biological functions in the human body. These functions include:
- assisting immune function
- collagen synthesis
- regulating the synthesis of neurotransmitters
- eliminating reactive oxygen species from the body
- scavenging free radicals
- facilitating enzymatic reactions
Overall, vitamin C is important for helping your body fight pathogens, maintain cognitive health, prevent oxidative stress, contribute to growth, and repair damaged tissues or organs. Since vitamin C has so many vital roles, many researchers have questioned whether vitamin C can affect THC levels in the body.
Therefore, determining if a relationship is present between vitamin C and THC is important. For example, it would be useful to know if vitamin C reduces the amount of THC in the body for a drug test. Or perhaps vitamin C might mediate THC levels to protect the body from any damaging side effects.
Does vitamin C reduce THC levels?
Unfortunately, evidence as to whether vitamin C reduces the amount of THC in your body is insufficient. However, many people are curious about the interaction between vitamin C and THC because it could be the answer to faster detoxes.
For instance, if vitamin C does reduce the amount of THC in the body quickly, this could help people prepare for a drug test. Although THC is legal in many places, some workplaces still test for it. This is no different from how they would test for alcohol or illicit drugs. Any substance that causes intoxication is not safe or appropriate for most workplaces.
Some users on the internet have tested this theory and the results vary. Hence, if you’re drinking lots of orange juice to pass an upcoming drug test, you have no guarantees that this will work.
If you have no other options, it might be tempting to try a remedy such as orange juice. But if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is. Excessive attempts to detoxify your body can make a drug test look suspicious, especially if your attempt causes you to urinate a lot. As a result, your test could come back inconclusive, and you might be asked to perform the drug test again.
Additionally, drug tests have improved over the years, thus becoming more sensitive. Even if vitamin C can clear THC to some extent, trace amounts of THC will still be detectable.
Other people have also suggested that vitamin C might mask THC levels, so it will go undetected on a drug test. But, again, the evidence does not support this claim. And even if it were true, as mentioned earlier, drug tests have become more sensitive and can distinguish vitamin C from THC.
Vitamin C and Detoxes
Drug tests aside, is it possible that vitamin C aids in detoxes? In other words, if you want to eliminate toxins or unwanted compounds from your body, can vitamin C speed up this process?
Some evidence shows vitamin C levels in the body are depleted following drug use. Drugs such as cannabis, which are typically smoked, appear to deplete vitamin C stores rapidly, and chronic cigarette smokers are also more at risk of depleting their vitamin C.
Smoke inhalation can cause oxidative stress, a condition that damages cells and tissues within the body. To recover from this oxidative stress, vitamin C is required, which is why it becomes depleted following the use of drugs or smoke inhalation.
Therefore, vitamin C could aid the detoxification process in terms of helping your body recover. But it might not have any direct effect on reducing THC levels.
How long does THC remain in the body?
THC can remain in the body for up to 30 days. Although longer durations have been recorded.
How long THC remains in your body ultimately depends on your circumstances. For example, if you’re a chronic user, THC remains in your body for much longer and it may take several attempts before you can pass a drug test. If you rarely use products that contain THC, you might be lucky enough to clear the THC within a matter of days or weeks.
Another factor that influences how much THC remains in your body is your body fat percentage. THC is a lipophilic molecule, which means it can combine with and dissolve easily in lipids or fats. This means it can be stored in fat cells for long periods of time.
Hence, if your body fat percentage is higher, more THC may be stored in your body.
Overall, the amount of THC that remains in the body, and the duration, vary from person to person. If vitamin C does have some effect on reducing THC levels, the effect might not be enough to clear the chemical completely.
Do detoxes work?
If you’re looking at other detox methods besides vitamin C, beware that most detoxes are unreliable or have not been tested extensively. However, if you’re using a detox to improve your health regardless of whether your THC levels decline, they could offer some benefits.
Some people claim that drinking more water, eating a low-fat diet, and exercising also help them clear THC more quickly. Combining these methods will certainly have a greater effect, but it will still take some time before all traces of THC are gone.
Can vitamin C lower your tolerance to THC?
Another claim is that vitamin C can lower your tolerance to compounds such as THC. Tolerance refers to how sensitive you are to a particular compound. With THC, for example, if you have a high tolerance, then more THC is required to produce an effect. However, if you have low tolerance, less THC is required to produce an effect.
Therefore, it makes sense that someone would want to reduce their tolerance because the side effects become worse when doses get too high. Also, it’s annoying when a drug no longer works how it used to.
If vitamin C reduced your tolerance, then this would mean you could take more vitamin C and less THC. As a result, the THC levels in your body would reduce because the THC consumption would be less.
Although this sounds promising, the evidence doesn’t support this claim either. If you want to reduce your tolerance, the best way to achieve this is by taking a break from THC.
And during your break from THC, you could take vitamin C to improve your overall health.
The bottom line
It’s unlikely that vitamin C directly affects THC levels in the body. A common misconception is that vitamin C helps cannabis users pass drug tests. However, this method is unreliable—probably an urban legend—and it’s unlikely that vitamin C clears THC before a test. However, increasing your vitamin C intake after smoking cannabis is beneficial because smoke inhalation depletes your vitamin C stores.
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