Low plasma ascorbate levels in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus consuming adequate dietary vitamin C.


Sinclair AJ, Taylor PB, Lunec J, Girling AJ, Barnett AH




Diabet Med


questionnaire, 54.0 +/- 28.9 (patients) vs 65.0 +/- 30.9 (controls) mg. Vitamin C intake derived from both methods was significantly correlated (p < 0.001). Plasma ascorbate (30.4 +/- 19.1 mumol l-1) and dehydroascorbate (27.6 +/- 6.4 mumol l-1) levels were significantly lower in patients vs in controls (68.8 +/- 36.0 and 31.8 +/- 4.8 mumol l-1, respectively), p < 0.0001 and p < 0.01. Plasma ascorbate levels were significantly correlated with vitamin C intake derived from the food diary (p < 0.01) and questionnaire (p < 0.01) methods in the diabetic group only. Low ascorbate levels in diabetes appears to be a consequence of the disease itself and not due to inadequate dietary intake of vitamin C. A short vitamin C questionnaire is a convenient and reliable estimate of vitamin C intake.