Scientific Opinion on the substantiation of health claims related to vitamin C and protection of DNA, proteins and lipids from oxidative damage (ID 129, 138, 143, 148), antioxidant function of lutein (ID 146), maintenance of vision (ID 141, 142), collagen formation (ID 130, 131, 136, 137, 149), function of the nervous system (ID 133), function of the immune system (ID 134), function of the immune system during and after extreme physical exercise (ID 144), non-haem iron absorption (ID 132, 147), energy-yielding metabolism (ID 135), and relief in case of irritation in the upper respiratory tract (ID 1714, 1715) pursuant to Article 13(1) of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006

Tabs

Article
Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies
EFSA Journal
EFSA Journal 2009; 7(9):1226 [28 pp.].
doi
10.2903/j.efsa.2009.1226
Panel members at the time of adoption
Jean-Louis Bresson, Albert Flynn, Marina Heinonen, Karin Hulshof, Hannu Korhonen, Pagona Lagiou, Martinus Løvik, Rosangela Marchelli, Ambroise Martin, Bevan Moseley, Hildegard Przyrembel, Seppo Salminen, Sean (J.J.) Strain, Stephan Strobel, Inge Tetens, Henk van den Berg, Hendrik van Loveren and Hans Verhagen
Contact
Type
Opinion of the Scientific Committee/Scientific Panel
On request from
European Commission
Question Number
EFSA-Q-2008-916
EFSA-Q-2008-917
EFSA-Q-2008-918
EFSA-Q-2008-919
EFSA-Q-2008-920
EFSA-Q-2008-921
EFSA-Q-2008-922
EFSA-Q-2008-923
EFSA-Q-2008-924
EFSA-Q-2008-925
EFSA-Q-2008-928
EFSA-Q-2008-929
EFSA-Q-2008-930
EFSA-Q-2008-931
EFSA-Q-2008-933
EFSA-Q-2008-934
EFSA-Q-2008-935
EFSA-Q-2008-936
EFSA-Q-2008-2450
EFSA-Q-2008-2451
Adopted
2 July 2009
Published
1 October 2009
Last Updated
9 December 2010. This version replaces the previous one/s.
Affiliation
European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), Parma, Italy
Note
Download Article (395.04 KB)
Abstract

No abstract available

Summary

This scientific output, published on 9 December 2010, replaces the earlier version published on 1 October 2009[1].

Following a request from the European Commission, the Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies was asked to provide a scientific opinion on a list of health claims pursuant to Article 13 of Regulation 1924/2006. This opinion addresses the scientific substantiation of health claims in relation to vitamin C and the following claimed effects: protection of DNA, proteins and lipids from oxidative damage, antioxidant function of lutein, maintenance of vision, collagen formation, function of the nervous system, function of the immune system, function of the immune system during and after extreme physical exercise, non-haem iron absorption, energy-yielding metabolism, and relief in case of irritation in the upper respiratory tract pursuant to Article 13(1) of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006. The scientific substantiation is based on the information provided by the Member States in the consolidated list of Article 13 health claims and references that EFSA has received from Member States or directly from stakeholders.

The food constituent that is the subject of the health claims is vitamin C, which is a well recognised nutrient and is measurable in foods by established methods. The Panel considers that vitamin C is sufficiently characterised.

The Panel concludes that a cause and effect relationship has been established between the dietary intake of vitamin C and the protection of DNA, proteins and lipids from oxidative damage, normal collagen formation, normal function of the nervous system, normal function of the immune system, maintenance of normal function of the immune system during and after extreme physical exercise, non-haem iron absorption and normal energy-yielding metabolism.

The Panel considers that, in order to bear a claim, a food should be at least a source of vitamin C as per Annex to Regulation 1924/2006. Such amounts can be easily consumed as part of a balanced diet. The target population is the general population.

The Panel considers that, in order to bear the claim related to the maintenance of normal function of the immune system during and after intense physical exercise, a food should contain at least 200 mg vitamin C to be consumed daily in addition to the usual diet. Such amounts can be easily consumed as part of a balanced diet. The target population is subjects performing intense physical exercise.

The Panel concludes that a cause and effect relationship has not been established between the dietary intake of vitamin C and the promotion of the antioxidant function of lutein, and the relief in case of irritation in the upper respiratory tract.

The evidence provided is insufficient to establish a cause and effect relationship between the dietary intake of vitamin C intake and the maintenance of normal vision.

Keywords
Vitamin C, collagen formation, immune function, oxidative damage, energy metabolism, non-haem iron absorption, physical exercise, health claims.
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Number of Pages
28