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Vitamin C Synthetic/Natural


ecoli
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So, in my chem lab we had to write a procedure that helps us determine the difference between natural and synthetic vitamin C. I know all the lab procedures we should use (mostly titrations, spectroscophy and the like) but I don't know what the difference is, so I don't no what techniques to use, or how to interepret those results. Can anyone help a brother out?

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By vitamin C do you mean soley ascorbic acid? I think (not verified) synthetic vitamin C is purely ascorbic acid and natural might be a bit more heterogeneous in terms of other compounds in might contain

 

This is what I think this means. Natural C contains bioflavinoids and stuff, and synthetic contains just ascorbic acid... I THINK. My lab manual is kind of non-decriptive about this. As in, it doesn't tell me anything about the differences.

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Wikipedia says that actual vitamin C is the l-enantiomer of ascorbic acid, and that the d one is harmless but useless. I know in many living systems only one chirality is ever produced (amino acids, I think), while in a chemical reaction, both are equally produced. Maybe that's how you tell them apart?

 

Mokele

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Wikipedia says that actual vitamin C is the l-enantiomer of ascorbic acid' date=' and that the d one is harmless but useless. I know in many living systems only one chirality is ever produced (amino acids, I think), while in a chemical reaction, both are equally produced. Maybe that's how you tell them apart?

 

Mokele

 

I knew about the L-anatiomer already... that's not the right answer, I'm sure. All the vitamin C, even what's synthetically made is the L-anantiomer, at least that's what;s out into the pills. I'm sure there thinking of something different.

 

http://www.healthissuesmonthly.com/naturalvssyntheticvitamins.html

One way to tell if a product is synthetic is to use the word potencies. In reality, high concentrations have nothing to do with potency. A 10 000 mg capsule of Vitamin C may not necessarily be potent at all!

 

how could I meaure the potency?

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There are four possible ways of measuring the difference.

 

1) using circular dicorism http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circular_dichroism

 

2) reacting it with an enzyme that works on vitamin C. An enzyme will only be specific for one of the enantiomers.

 

3) crystalizing them and looking for two different cystal shapes under a microscope. I know it's the way loise pasteur did it originally.

 

4) Reacting them with another single enantiomer to make a diastereomer and sperating that based on different chemical properties.

 

 

I'd suggest the circular dicorism...

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To my opinion the best thing you can do is respond and tell that natural vitamin C and man-made vitamin C are the same and that you cannot make any difference between them.

 

If there is a difference, then it wil be due to impurities. But good refining methods certainly can make the natural product as pure as the synthetic product. Ascorbic acid crystallizes well from water, so it should not be that hard to make a pure compound from natural sources.

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There are four possible ways of measuring the difference.

 

1) using circular dicorism http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circular_dichroism

 

2) reacting it with an enzyme that works on vitamin C. An enzyme will only be specific for one of the enantiomers.

 

3) crystalizing them and looking for two different cystal shapes under a microscope. I know it's the way loise pasteur did it originally.

 

4) Reacting them with another single enantiomer to make a diastereomer and sperating that based on different chemical properties.

 

 

I'd suggest the circular dicorism...

 

Can't you just measure the optical rotation using a simple polarimeter? No need to involve some fancy (and expensive!) equipment like a CD spectrometer.

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To my opinion the best thing you can do is respond and tell that natural vitamin C and man-made vitamin C are the same and that you cannot make any difference between them.

 

If there is a difference' date=' then it wil be due to impurities. But good refining methods certainly can make the natural product as pure as the synthetic product. Ascorbic acid crystallizes well from water, so it should not be that hard to make a pure compound from natural sources.[/quote']

 

did the lab this morning. The results certainly seem to indicate this.

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If there is a difference' date=' then it wil be due to impurities. But good refining methods certainly can make the natural product as pure as the synthetic product. .[/quote']

 

If the impurities are of the non active optical isomer, what methods can be used to sererate the enantiomers if they have the same physical and chemical properties outside chiral enviroments?

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Can't you just measure the optical rotation using a simple polarimeter? No need to involve some fancy (and expensive!) equipment like a CD spectrometer.

 

Sure I guess you could lol. I just said that since that's what I'm used to having around, never actually used a polarimeter... This is pretty funny actually.

 

 

Actually to tell you the truth if the question is worded natural and artificial Vitamin C, than you can't tell the difference except for impurities. Since the non-natural isomer isn't vitamin C!! Even if produced artificially. It maybe ascorbic acid, but vitamin C only refers to the isomer used in the body.

I guess it's just a trick question.

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The question was probably designed to show you that chemically there really is no difference between a 'natural' substance and a man-made one. As an aside, hemlock is a natural substance and I wouldn't consider it something that I want to digest. Same thing with tetrodotoxin.

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The question was probably designed to show you that chemically there really is no difference between a 'natural' substance and a man-made one.

 

As is supported by the evidence I obtained from the lab.

 

However, on some websites, they were trying to say that vitamin C is a complex, not merely abscorbic acid, and that taking just abscorbic acid is bad, becuase it forces your body to get some other parts of the complex (such as bioflavinoids) from your body. My chem. prof. said that this was bunk, and that the legal definition of Vitamin C is abscorbic acid. Not being one to trust the Gov't and FDA blindly (I don't agree with a lot of the material about nutrition that they publish), I ask you guys, is this ok to assume?

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However, on some websites, they were trying to say that vitamin C is a complex, not merely abscorbic acid, and that taking just abscorbic acid is bad, becuase it forces your body to get some other parts of the complex (such as bioflavinoids) from your body. My chem. prof. said that this was bunk, and that the legal definition of Vitamin C is abscorbic acid. Not being one to trust the Gov't and FDA blindly (I don't agree with a lot of the material about nutrition that they publish), I ask you guys, is this ok to assume?

 

You're proffs are right. Vitamin C is abscorbic acid. I've seen those same rediculous claims that it's a complex. And they stem from a complete lack of understanding about how vitamins work, and anything related to metabolism. They mainly come from naturalist nuts who think that anything man made has to be bad for you and everything natural has to be good. There is no logic to thier claims.

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You're proffs are right. Vitamin C is abscorbic acid. I've seen those same rediculous claims that it's a complex. And they stem from a complete lack of understanding about how vitamins work, and anything related to metabolism. They mainly come from naturalist nuts who think that anything man made has to be bad for you and everything natural has to be good. There is no logic to thier claims.

 

These are the same people who will also claim that natural hot spring waters are very good for you too. (As they fail to realize that the reason the spring water is so hot is becuase of radioactive material which is decaying in the water which gives off the heat). :D

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some nutter tried to sell me Xenon enriched water as a cure all once. doubt the guy had a full set of marbles as i was coming out of the chemistry building at my university.

 

I love drinking noble gases in solution...

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