A randomized controlled trial of vitamin C in the prevention and amelioration of the common cold

Br J Prev Soc Med. 1976 Sep;30(3):193-6. doi: 10.1136/jech.30.3.193.


A randomized controlled trial of the effect of 1 g ascorbic acid per day in the prevention of the common cold was conducted on 688 adult women. There is evidence of a small reduction by vitamin C in the mean number of chest colds, but no evidence of any effect on simple colds. The existence of a subgroup of vulnerable women in the community who benefit from vitamin C was considered but further examination of the data gives no support to this conclusion.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Ascorbic Acid / therapeutic use*
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Common Cold / prevention & control*
  • Cough / prevention & control
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Placebos
  • Time Factors


  • Placebos
  • Ascorbic Acid