Vitamin C and Olive Oil: Better Together

Some things are just better together, and these two powerful ingredients, olive oil and vitamin C, make an incredible combination that promotes overall wellness; in particular, they may even play an instrumental part in cancer prevention. Together, this dynamic duo could unlock dormant “ghost genes” within our bodies which may play an integral part in fighting disease.

Olive Oil: Exploring its Health Benefits

Olive oil has long been considered an invaluable source of heart-healthy fats like oleic acid. But its real strength lies in phenolic compounds found within. Not only can these potency antioxidants protect our cells from everyday damage; but their presence could activate dormant sections of DNA known as ghost genes – once activated they could help our bodies produce vitamin C more efficiently – an essential nutrient in fighting off oxidative stress that often leads to cancer development.

Vitamin C Is More Than an Immune Boost

We know vitamin C for its immune-enhancing and skin brightening benefits, as well as for its role in cancer prevention. In particular, its power lies in fighting off free radicals which damage cells and lead to cancerous changes. I’ve had so much success with Vitamin C in my fight against cancer that I devoted an entire chapter to it in my book, “I Used to Have Cancer”. With recent reports that olive oil could increase our natural production of vitamin C production, new avenues in cancer prevention strategies are opening.

For a long time, it was believed that human beings are incapable of producing our own vitamin C, a trait that sets us apart from many other animals. Significant research now shows that humans do produce vitamin C during the embryonic stage of development, and that ability continues for some time afterward:

“Substantial evidence exists that indicates the ability of the human liver to make vitamin C is present at birth and for a variable amount of time thereafter.” (The Restoration of Vitamin C Synthesis in Humans: Orthomolecular Medicine)

This unique aspect of human biology has led to the necessity of including vitamin C-rich foods in our diet or taking dietary supplements to prevent deficiencies and maintain overall health.

And now we learn that olive oil can maximize our body’s ability to produce vitamin C!

Olive Oil and Vitamin C Together Provide Extra Protection

Combining olive oil with vitamin C can enhance their respective protective effects, by increasing our body’s ability to produce its own vitamin C naturally, while olive oil boosts our body’s natural defenses against cancer development. Antioxidants found in olive oil and vitamin C protect cells from damage while possibly helping stop mutations that could eventually lead to cancer formation.

How much do you need to promote vitamin C production? According to an article written by Thomas E. Levy, MD, JD and Ron Hunninghake, MD, and published in Orthomolecular Medicine:

“In a small unpublished study, a supplement with olive leaf extract containing 50 mg of HT administered daily increased vitamin C blood levels between 50% and 200% in five volunteers after taking it for only a week. Furthermore, in four of the five subjects a clear-cut elevation in those blood levels was seen the day after the first dose.”

Simple (and Delicious!) Ways to Maximize the Synergistic Effect in Your Diet

Integrating olive oil and vitamin C into your daily meals is both delicious and healthful. Here are a few simple strategies for using these powerful ingredients in everyday meals:

Salad Dressings: One of the easiest and healthiest ways to combine olive oil and vitamin C is through fresh salads. Blend olive oil with lemon juice – an abundant source of Vitamin C – for an aromatic yet nutritious salad dressing, then spice it up further by including garlic or herbs for additional flavor!

  • Marinades: Start by marinating chicken, fish or vegetables with olive oil as the foundation. Next add citrus juices such as lemon or orange juice which contain high levels of Vitamin C along with herbs and spices that enhance flavor while simultaneously tenderizing meat. This method not only creates delicious aromas in your marinade but can help create more tender pieces of meat!
  • Roasted Vegetables: Add olive oil and spices before roasting your vegetables in the oven, finishing off by sprinkling a pinch of lemon juice over them to increase flavor while providing extra vitamin C benefits.
  • Smoothies: Olive oil may not be top of mind when creating smoothies, but just adding even small amounts can significantly increase your healthy fat consumption without altering their flavor significantly. When selecting fruit additions – like blueberries, blackberries and raspberries – add those in small amounts for the best result when creating this satisfying beverage.

Olive Oil and Vitamin C Benefits Go Beyond Diet

The advantages of olive oil and vitamin C extend far beyond their nutritional intake; topically applied they can nourish and protect skin – potentially decreasing risk for skin cancer by fighting oxidative damage at its source.

Make Your Own: Homemade Olive Oil and Vitamin C Serum


  • 1 tablespoon of high-grade extra virgin olive oil* and 1/2 teaspoon of vitamin C powder** (L-ascorbic acid).
  • 1 teaspoon of distilled or rose water (for its added fragrance and soothing properties). A dark glass dropper bottle should also be included to protect its integrity against light exposure.

*Be sure to use a cold-pressed 100% Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
**I personally like Vitality C, one of the best absorbed powders available.


  • Dissolve Vitamin C Powder in Distilled or Rose Water. For best results, in a small bowl thoroughly dissolve the vitamin C powder with either distilled water or rose water to form a serum solution.
  • Mix With Olive Oil. Combine your high-grade, cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil with your dissolved vitamin C solution as a carrier, aiding its absorption into the skin while simultaneously providing additional antioxidant benefits.
  • Store Appropriately. Pour the mixture into a dark glass dropper bottle to store. Storing in darkness helps protect vitamin C from degradation from exposure to light, prolonging its antioxidant benefits in your concoction.
  • Apply with Care. When using vitamin C serums on clean, slightly damp skin, apply just a few drops at night as it could make you more sensitive to sunlight in the morning.
  • Important Tips. Initially conduct a patch test to ensure no adverse reactions arise from regular use of this serum. For optimal results, small batches should be made frequently to preserve potency; it should ideally be consumed within one week after production.

This easy homemade serum combines the powerful antioxidant benefits of vitamin C with olive oil’s moisturizing and soothing benefits for an all-natural way to protect skin against environmental stressors and potential oxidative damage.



Thomas E. Levy, MD, JD, Ron Hunninghake, MD, The Restoration of Vitamin C Synthesis in Humans. Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, May 11, 2022.

North American Olive Oil Association.

Lozano-Castellón J, Vallverdú-Queralt A, Rinaldi de Alvarenga JF, Illán M, Torrado-Prat X, Lamuela-Raventós RM. Domestic Sautéing with EVOO: Change in the Phenolic Profile. Antioxidants (Basel). 2020 Jan 16;9(1):77. doi: 10.3390/antiox9010077. PMID: 31963124; PMCID: PMC7022658.

Lopez-Huertas E, Fonolla J. Hydroxytyrosol supplementation increases vitamin C levels in vivo. A human volunteer trial. Redox Biol. 2017 Apr;11:384-389. doi: 10.1016/j.redox.2016.12.014. Epub 2016 Dec 26. PMID: 28063380; PMCID: PMC5219601.

Yin X, Chen K, Cheng H, Chen X, Feng S, Song Y, Liang L. Chemical Stability of Ascorbic Acid Integrated into Commercial Products: A Review on Bioactivity and Delivery Technology. Antioxidants (Basel). 2022 Jan 13;11(1):153. doi: 10.3390/antiox11010153. PMID: 35052657; PMCID: PMC8773188.

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