Natural Standard Bottom Line Monograph, Copyright © 2013 (www.naturalstandard.com). Commercial distribution prohibited. This monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. You should consult with a qualified healthcare provider before making decisions about therapies and/or health conditions.
While some complementary and alternative techniques have been studied scientifically, high-quality data regarding safety, effectiveness, and mechanism of action are limited or controversial for most therapies. Whenever possible, it is recommended that practitioners be licensed by a recognized professional organization that adheres to clearly published standards. In addition, before starting a new technique or engaging a practitioner, it is recommended that patients speak with their primary healthcare provider(s). Potential benefits, risks (including financial costs), and alternatives should be carefully considered. The below monograph is designed to provide historical background and an overview of clinically-oriented research, and neither advocates for or against the use of a particular therapy.
Aerobic oxygen, bis-beta-carboxyethyl germanium sesquioxide, Ge-132, germanium, organic germanium, organic germanium-132, oxygen, salt water, stabilized oxygen.
Note: This review does not cover vitamin O that contains germanium. Please see the individual monograph on germanium for more information.
Oxygen is an integral part of human existence. Some have dubbed this element as "vitamin O," even though it is not a true vitamin. Proponents of vitamin O claim that disease occurs because the body is lacking in oxygen. Therefore, by ingesting oxygen through vitamin O supplements, these ailments can be reversed.
There appears to be two types of vitamin O products on the market. The first is an expensive health supplement that is composed largely of salt water and "stabilized" or "aerobic" oxygen. Companies, such as RGarden, marketed vitamin O (without germanium) claiming that it could cure or prevent serious diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and lung disease and when taken by mouth, enrich the bloodstream with supplemental oxygen. These claims were never substantiated with scientific evidence; however, numerous testimonials mention the effects of vitamin O on a variety of conditions. The second vitamin O product contains germanium, which when synthetically derived may be nontoxic and safe at high doses.
There is no scientific evidence currently available regarding the effectiveness of vitamin O or the benefit of ingesting stabilized or aerobic oxygen. Vitamin O (oral or topical oxygen) has not been proven to be an effective treatment for its claimed uses.
These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.
No available studies qualify for inclusion in the evidence table.
*Key to grades:A: Strong scientific evidence for this use; B: Good scientific evidence for this use; C: Unclear scientific evidence for this use; D: Fair scientific evidence against this use (it may not work); F: Strong scientific evidence against this use (it likely does not work).
The below uses are based on tradition or scientific theories. They often have not been thoroughly tested in humans, and safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious and should be evaluated by a qualified health care professional.
Alzheimer's disease, amyloidosis (rare disease that causes the buildup of amyloid, a protein and starch, in tissues and organs), antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), asthma, cancer, canker sores, cataracts, chronic bronchitis, common cold, cough, diabetes mellitus, diabetic ulcers, ear infections, energy booster, fatigue, flu, glaucoma, headaches, heart disease, hemorrhoids, hypertension (high blood pressure), immunostimulation, improving breathing, lung disease, memory loss, metabolic disorders, obesity, pain, prostate problems, shingles, sleep disorders.
The below doses are based on scientific research, publications, traditional use, or expert opinion. Many herbs and supplements have not been thoroughly tested, and safety and effectiveness may not be proven. Brands may be made differently, with variable ingredients, even within the same brand. The below doses may not apply to all products. You should read product labels, and discuss doses with a qualified healthcare provider before starting therapy.
Adults (over 18 years old):
There is no proven safe or effective dose for vitamin O in adults.
Children (under 18 years old):
There is no proven safe or effective dose for vitamin O in children.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not strictly regulate herbs and supplements. There is no guarantee of strength, purity or safety of products, and effects may vary. You should always read product labels. If you have a medical condition, or are taking other drugs, herbs, or supplements, you should speak with a qualified healthcare provider before starting a new therapy. Consult a healthcare provider immediately if you experience side effects.
There are no known reports of allergy to vitamin O.
Side Effects and Warnings
Vitamin O, although not a proven treatment for any condition, is theoretically safe. However, vitamin O may not be safe when purchased from certain sellers as some products marketed as vitamin O have been known to contain inorganic germanium, which can cause kidney damage and toxicity.
Manufacturers have reported side effects of slight headache or too much energy following too much vitamin O at one time.
Use cautiously in patients who are likely to replace proven, effective medications with vitamin O.
Use cautiously in patients with high blood pressure who are watching their sodium intake, as some vitamin O products contain salt.
Pregnancy and Breastfeeding
Vitamin O is not recommended in pregnant or breastfeeding women due to a lack of available scientific evidence.
Most herbs and supplements have not been thoroughly tested for interactions with other herbs, supplements, drugs, or foods. The interactions listed below are based on reports in scientific publications, laboratory experiments, or traditional use. You should always read product labels. If you have a medical condition, or are taking other drugs, herbs, or supplements, you should speak with a qualified healthcare provider before starting a new therapy.
Interactions with Drugs
Vitamin O products may contain sodium chloride (salt); therefore, patients with high blood pressure should be aware. Use cautiously if taking blood pressure-lowering agents due to possible additive effects.
Interactions with Herbs & Dietary Supplements
Vitamin O products may contain sodium chloride (salt); therefore, patients with high blood pressure should be aware. Use cautiously if taking blood pressure-lowering herbs or supplements due to possible additive effects.
This information is based on a systematic review of scientific literature edited and peer-reviewed by contributors to the Natural Standard Research Collaboration (www.naturalstandard.com).
Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.
Asaka T, Nitta E, Makifuchi T, et al. Germanium intoxication with sensory ataxia. J.Neurol.Sci. 1995;130(2):220-223. View Abstract
Fujimoto M, Ishibashi H, Shimamura R, et al. [A patient with liver cirrhosis manifesting various symptoms including cerebellar ataxia due to germanium intoxication]. Fukuoka Igaku Zasshi 1992;83(3):139-143. View Abstract
Iijima M, Mugishima M, Takeuchi M, et al. [A case of inorganic germanium poisoning with peripheral and cranial neuropathy, myopathy and autonomic dysfunction]. No To Shinkei 1990;42(9):851-856. View Abstract
Kamijo M, Yagihashi S, Kida K, et al. [An autopsy case of chronic germanium intoxication presenting peripheral neuropathy, spinal ataxia, and chronic renal failure]. Rinsho Shinkeigaku 1991;31(2):191-196. View Abstract
Krapf R, Schaffner T, Iten PX. Abuse of germanium associated with fatal lactic acidosis. Nephron 1992;62(3):351-356. View Abstract
Nagata N, Yoneyama T, Yanagida K, et al. Accumulation of germanium in the tissues of a long-term user of germanium preparation died of acute renal failure. J.Toxicol.Sci. 1985;10(4):333-341. View Abstract
Obara K, Saito T, Sato H, et al. Germanium poisoning: clinical symptoms and renal damage caused by long-term intake of germanium. Jpn.J.Med. 1991;30(1):67-72. View Abstract
Raisin J, Hess B, Blatter M, et al. [Toxicity of an organic Germanium compound: deleterious consequences of a "natural remedy"]. Schweiz.Med.Wochenschr. 1-8-1992;122(1-2):11-13. View Abstract
Schroeder HA, Balassa JJ. Abnormal trace metals in man: germanium. J.Chronic.Dis. 1967;20(4):211-224. View Abstract
Takeuchi A, Yoshizawa N, Oshima S, et al. Nephrotoxicity of germanium compounds: report of a case and review of the literature. Nephron 1992;60(4):436-442. View Abstract
Van der Spoel JI, Stricker BH, Schipper ME, et al. [Toxic damage of kidney, liver and muscle attributed to the administration of germanium-lactate-citrate]. Ned.Tijdschr.Geneeskd. 6-22-1991;135(25):1134-1137. View Abstract
Copyright © 2013 Natural Standard (www.naturalstandard.com)
The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.
March 22, 2017