The danger of taking antiMALARIALs, VITAMIN C and Blood tonics together

 

Are you in the habit of taking Vitamin C and Blood tonic with the drugs you take? Please don’t do so whenever you have malaria.

The liver is an important organ in the life process of malaria parasites in the body and is rich in Iron. When iron supplements or blood tonics and capsules are taken, they accumulate more in the liver where malaria parasites multiply very favourably since they depend a lot on iron for their multiplication. In fact, these parasites also attack red blood cells and destroy them (haemolysis) just to get more iron. This in turn causes inflammatory symptoms that present as malaria; and that’s why malaria, left untreated, will gradually result in anaemia (low concentration of red blood cells in the body).

 

Malaria parasites depend a lot on iron for their multiplication

 

Vitamin C, on the other hand, whether gotten from fruits like orange, grape, fruit juice, or tablets sold in pharmacies, helps with the absorption of iron which goes mostly to the liver and blood. This may be good for a patient who has anaemia as it helps to build up blood in the body, but it is detrimental to people who have malaria as the malaria parasites will have more iron to feed on and grow further. Also, Vitamin C helps young malaria parasites grow to maturity in the body.

Artemisinin Combination Therapy (ACTs) like artemether and amodiaquine which are contained in antimalarials like Coartem, Artequick, e.t.c. act by releasing oxidative derivatives in the body to mop up the parasites, but vitamin C acts as an antioxidant which counters the effect of the oxidative derivatives and so the antimalarial effect is not fully achieved.

 

Vitamin C helps young malaria parasites grow to maturity in the body.

 

So, please avoid taking antimalarials, Vitamin C (in any form) and blood tonic (iron) together. When you have finished taking the antimalarial (usually 3days), you can commence your vitamin C and blood tonic.

Hope you learned something new!

 

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