Reaction to natural vitamin C (18 months)

My 18 month old daughter is having a reaction to the natural vitamin C I'm giving her. Her skin turns bright red. The vitamin contains sodium ascorbate in a base of rose hips, Acerola berries, hesperidin, and citrus bioflavonoids. The vitamin is 100mg, but I've only been giving her about 1/3 of it to her because of the reaction. She is still reacting to it at the smaller dose. Any hints as to why she is reacting to it and what I can do?

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Sue Gilbert

Sue Gilbert works as a consulting nutritionist. For many years she worked with Earth's Best Organic Baby Food, integrating nutrition and... Read more

Dear V.,

My guess is she is reacting to the acerola cherries or the rose hips, but without isolating them to feed to her it would be hard to say for sure. Because it is so expensive, and sometimes physically impossible to isolate ascorbic acid (vitamin C) from a natural source, 'natural' vitamins often come with residuals of the plant they are being isolated from. Rose hips and Acerola cherries are very high in vitamin C which is why they are used for the manufacturing of natural vitamins.

Before I suggest an alternative, you should first evaluate your daughter's diet to determine if perhaps she is already getting her RDA of vitamin C, which is 40 milligrams. If you conclude that she is not, than I suggest you allow her 4 ounces a day of a vitamin C enriched baby juice, and make an effort to increase her intake of other fresh fruits and vegetables. The vitamin C used to enrich baby juice is pure vitamin C with no plant residuals that may cause allergic reactions. It is manufactured vitamin C but its chemical structure is exactly like the vitamin C found in nature, and the human body cannot detect the difference.

Thank you for writing.

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