Darwin-L Message Log 8:99 (April 1994)

Academic Discussion on the History and Theory of the Historical Sciences

This is one message from the Archives of Darwin-L (1993–1997), a professional discussion group on the history and theory of the historical sciences.

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<8:99>From phlkcs@gsusgi2.gsu.edu  Wed Apr 27 11:32:18 1994

Date: Wed, 27 Apr 1994 12:31:06 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Kelly C. Smith" <phlkcs@gsusgi2.gsu.edu>
Subject: Re: vitamin C
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu

On Wed, 27 Apr 1994, Arlen Carey wrote:

> As I recall from the distant past (>1 ybp), some of the research/claims
> extolling the virtues of vitamin c for the health/nutrition of today's
> human population recommended massive doses for true palliative effects
> (massives doses = 15-20 grams per day).  How could our ancestors have
> consumed enough fruit to obtain an equivalent amount of vitamin c?
> (Perhaps part of the answer concerns the fact that some of the beneficial
> effects of such massive consumption are realized only relatively late in
> life--at a point so late that the benefits would have little if any
> effect on reproductive success.)  Any other ideas?

The beneficial effects of taking truly massive doses of C (if they exist)
need not be explained in terms of selection (at least not directly).
Humans were never selected for their responsivness to penicillin, etc.,
but they work nonetheless.
Kelly Smith

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