Vitamin C and Autism Ranking: Insufficient/Mixed evidence


Vitamin C - also known as ascorbic acid - is a water-soluble vitamin. Vitamin C is found in a wide variety of fruit and vegetables including peppers, broccoli, Brussels sprouts etc. It can also be taken as a dietary or nutritional supplement.

Some people believe that individuals with autism don't have enough vitamin C in their bodies, or that their bodies are poor at making use of the vitamin C available to them.

Other people believe that individuals with autism do not have the correct amount of dopamine in their bodies or that it is not working effectively. They believe that vitamin C can be used to change the amount and the action of the dopamine that is there.

Both groups of people believe that taking supplements of vitamin C - often alongside other vitamins and minerals - can help to change the brain chemistry of individuals with autism, resulting in improvements in behaviour.

Our Opinion

There is no consistent and robust research evidence to suggest that vitamin C benefits individuals with autism.

However there are many anecdotal reports of the benefits of vitamin C from a wide variety of sources.

Because of this, further research into the use of vitamin C may be justified provided that it is carried out in a scientifically robust manner.


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29 Jul 2016
Last Review
01 Jul 2014
Next Review
01 Jul 2017