Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is necessary for the growth, development and repair of all body tissues.
It’s involved in many body functions, including formation of collagen, absorption of iron,the proper functioning of the immune system, wound healing, and the maintenance of cartilage, bones, and teeth.
Because your body doesn’t produce vitamin C, you need to get it from your diet. Vitamin C is found in citrus fruits, berries, potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, broccoli and spinach.
Vitamin C is also available as an oral supplement, typically in the form of capsules and chewable tablets.
Vitamin C is a vitamin found in various foods and sold as a dietary supplement. It is used to prevent and treat scurvy.
Vitamin C is an essential nutrient involved in the repair of tissue and the enzymatic production of certain neurotransmitters.
Neurotransmitters are often referred to as the body’s chemical messengers. They are the molecules used by the nervous system to transmit messages between neurons, or from neurons to muscles. Communication between two neurons happens in the synaptic cleft (the small gap between the synapses of neurons).
Natural Sources of Vitamin C
Vitamin C is found in a wide variety of fruit and vegetables.
Good sources include:
- citrus fruit, such as oranges and orange juice
- brussels sprouts
What happens if I take too much vitamin C?
Taking large amounts (more than 1,000mg per day) of vitamin C can cause:
- stomach pain
These symptoms should disappear once you stop taking vitamin C supplements.
How much vitamin C do I need?
Adults aged 19 to 64 need 40mg of vitamin C a day.
You should be able to get all the vitamin C you need from your daily diet.
Vitamin C cannot be stored in the body, so you need it in your diet every day.
Health benefits of vitamin C
(1) Vitamin C is a strong antioxidant
Antioxidants act to protect the cells and limit the damage by stabilizing and mopping up free radicals.
So Vitamin C, Vitamin E and Beta Carotene could help keep the body younger and protect it against serious life threatening conditions.
Studies show that consuming more vitamin C can increase your blood antioxidant levels by up to 30%. This helps the body’s natural defences fight inflammation.
In relation to exercise, where oxidative stress and free radicals are prevalent due to the intense nature of it and its effect on the body, exercise-induced oxidative stress is highest for people with lower vitamin C levels.
We can then surmise that if you are currently training and engaging in intense daily workouts that you should supplement with vitamin C to prevent the deleterious effects of free radicals.
(2) Vitamin C boosts your immune system
We’ve already heard of how vitamin C prevents curable diseases such as scurvy and how it combats a variety of diseases.
As a result, it boosts your immunity and has been found to stave off illnesses such as colds and flu.
Studies show that vitamin C is essential to stimulate the immune system by increasing the strength and protection of the organism.
Due to its role in reducing inflammation, it is essentially for immunity and general health.
Finally, vitamin C protects the immune system, reduces the severity of allergic reactions and helps to fight off infections.
If you want to stay fit and healthy then adding more vitamin C to your diet should be a priority.
(3) Vitamin C helps maintain healthy skin and hair
If you want clearer skin and stronger hair then vitamin C plays a major role in making sure this becomes a reality.
Vitamin C helps build the protein collagen and coupled with the aforementioned absorption of iron you’ll not only have healthier skin and hair but you’ll maintain it.
Today, collagen is a bit of a buzzword but rather avoid supplementation and consume collagen-rich foods such as berries and foods high in omega-3 such as avocados and salmon.
Alongside your vitamin C diet you’ll ensure your natural beauty forever.
Symptoms of a vitamin C deficiency
If you’re deficient in vitamin C then you could suffer from the following symptoms:
- Inflammation of the gums (also called gingivitis)
- Slow wound healing
- Dry and splitting hair
- Rough and dry skin
- Weak immune system
- Swollen and painful joints
Read Also: Health Benefits of eating Crayfish