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Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, Dec 31, 2022

Strep A: How We Can Protect Our Children
A simple, safe and effective nutrient protocol

by Damien Downing, MBBS, MRSB, Contributing Editor

OMNS (Dec. 31, 2022) When a lung infection occurs, several questions occur. Is it caused by a virus, or bacteria? And what is the best treatment? Although a bacterial infection can be treated with an antibiotic medicine, a virus cannot. But a bacterial infection commonly occurs after a viral lung infection. Is there a treatment for a viral infection that can also treat a bacterial infection? Yes: it's vitamin C, given at an appropriate dose.

There's an outbreak of Strep A infections in the UK right now, and it seems to be worse than most winters - some children have died. I'm scared for my kids. What's the best thing I can do to keep them safe?

Start your kids on vitamin C now. A gram (1,000 mg) per year of age per day.

What else? There must be more I can do.

Yes, give them vitamin D3, magnesium, and zinc too;

Vitamin D3 at a rate of 3,000 IU (international units) a day below 12 years of age, 6,000 IU above it.

Magnesium citrate or malate, 100-200 a day mg below 12 years, 300-400 mg above it. Less if it gives a laxative effect.

Zinc 15mgs a day at any age.

Keep this up till spring comes, and really don't worry about overdosing; at around these levels it's not going to happen.

What is the best way to take or give vitamin C?

Best is in lots of water, in divided doses spread throughout the day. It doesn't last more than a few hours in the body so you have to take it all the time, and the best way is to dissolve vitamin C powder in warm water then dilute it in cold water till it tastes OK. If it's like biting into a lemon, it's too strong, add more water. If it causes a laxative effect, lower the dose. These days you can get big tubs of vitamin C powder or crystals (same thing), or even 1 kilogram bags. A rounded teaspoon of the crystals is about 5 grams.

So how do you know all this?

Vitamin C works for Strep A and all infections, bacterial and viral. We have known this all my lifetime (b 1948) but it's still carefully ignored. It even works for sepsis, reducing your risk of death from that by over 80%. [1]

Why do I mention my lifetime? Because a remarkable, towering doctor called Frederick Klenner, working as a general practitioner in Reidsville, North Carolina figured it all out in the 1940s. He published a paper in 1948 titled "Virus pneumonia and its treatment with vitamin C" [2]. He cured all the polio cases he saw in three days (there was an epidemic in 1948), and cured tetanus, snakebite, radiation burns - the list goes on and on. With viruses he nailed it completely: "When proper amounts are used, it will destroy all virus organisms. Don't expect control of a virus with 100 to 400 mg of C."

Maybe the most important thing he did was to figure out the dosages needed. It's important because that's one of the methods used to discredit vitamin C, vitamin D and other nutrients - "the body only needs 50mgs per day of vitamin C, it would be dangerous to take 100 times that". That's 5 grams -- very safe for most people.

Klenner even worked out that pregnant women who took 10 grams every day had better, shorter labors, their babies were healthier and more lively, and they even got much less stretch marks.

For kids he figured out that the daily dose to prevent infective illnesses getting serious is a gram of vitamin C (that's 1,000 milligrams) per day, per year of life [3]. Simple as that. Don't worry about giving them too much - this is one instance where you really can't overdose because your body won't let you. Take too much and the body stops absorbing it so it comes out the other end as part of loose bowel motions. That's not a side-effect, that's information from your body.

Should I give them the flu vaccine?

A viral infection like flu, or even a cold, is the way that secondary bacterial infections can get a hold (in our respiratory system mainly). That's a fact of life, everybody knows it. So will a flu vaccine prevent it happening? That's more complicated. Influenza is not the only virus that can have this effect - they all can, including colds and our new friends the coronaviruses. But the flu jab will only work against flu, and that's if it works at all.

We don't yet know how effective the current flu vaccine is going to be, and there's a gap for 2020-21 due to Covid. According to the World Health Organization, every year 5-10% of adults will catch the flu, and 20-30% of children. Figures for past years show the vaccine to have been at very best 50% effective in preventing you being diagnosed with flu, so it might reduce your kids' chances of catching it from 1 in 4 to 1 in 8 [4]. There's no way of knowing what that will do to their risk of Strep A though. And there is some laboratory evidence that the flu vaccine has just the same effect as the flu infection - it increases the risk of secondary bacterial infections, at least in laboratory mice [5].

But there is one thing that treats influenza, colds, any virus, and bacterial infections too, including life-threatening sepsis. That's vitamin C. It even makes vaccines more effective [6]. So whether you vaccinate the kids or not, just make sure they take their vitamin C every day. Antibiotics? Of course, if really needed. But first make sure they take their vitamin C every day.


1. Li J (2018) Evidence is stronger than you think: a meta-analysis of vitamin C use in patients with sepsis. Critical Care 22:258.

2. Klenner FR (1948) Virus pneumonia and its treatment with vitamin C. South Med Surg. 110:36-38.

3. Smith LH (1988) Clinical guide to the use of vitamin C: The clinical experiences of Frederick R. Klenner, M.D.. Portland, OR: Life Sciences Press, 1988. Originally titled: Vitamin C as a fundamental medicine: Abstracts of Dr. Frederick R. Klenner, M.D's published and unpublished work. ISBN 0-943685-01-X. Reprinted 1991, ISBN 0-943685-13-3.

4. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2022) Influenza: Past Seasons' Vaccine Effectiveness Estimates. Accessed 2022-12-27.

5. Mina MJ, McCullers JA, Klugman KP (2014) Live attenuated influenza vaccine enhances colonization of Streptococcus pneumoniae and Staphylococcus aureus in mice. mBio. 5(1):e01040-13.

6. Levy TE (2012) Vitamin C Prevents Vaccination Side Effects; Increases Effectiveness. Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, February 14, 2012

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