The benefits of vitamin C are what make our body resistant from diseases. Vitamin C has powerful antioxidants, which make it the most effective and safest nutrients. An adequate amount of vitamin C in our body is associated with having better health!
The benefits of vitamin C include many biological functions. Vitamin C, like ascorbic acid, provides nutrients that will boost the immune system. It also contributes to the prevention of various diseases like hypertension, asthma, frequent colds and even potential cancer cells.
Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that acts in the synthesis of collagen in our body. With enough collagen, it will strengthen our muscles. It contributes to maintaining the good health of our cartilage, bones and teeth.
On some occasions, the benefits of vitamin C provide treatment and prevention to scurvy disease. Scurvy diseases are a medical condition linked to having vitamin C deficiencies.
Around 1550 B.C., the first symptoms of scurvy observed. The symptoms include detachment of teeth from gums, blood coming out from the nose, thinning of skin and fatigue. Not long enough, scurvy diseases were no longer a threat to the health of people. In the 18th century, a British Royal Navy, James Lind, found out that eating lemons and oranges lowered the risk of having scurvy. And in the early 20th century, it has been discovered that foods like lemons and oranges form ascorbic acid when synthesized. Soon, it is called vitamin C.
Vitamin C is essential in our body; however we cannot generate this vitamin. Also, our body can only store a few amounts of vitamin C. Inadequate amounts of vitamin C can result in deficiencies, which is less than 350 mg. It will defeat the benefits of vitamin C foods, which can cause bleeding gums, fatigue and bruise.
What is the deficiency of Ascorbic acid?
What is the reason for vitamin C deficiency? Well, knowing the causes of deficiency gives understanding to the many benefits of vitamin C.
Vitamin C deficiencies can cause the stop of collagen synthesis, which is vital to our skin, blood vessels, and specific tissues. You will know if you have a lack of it if you are quickly getting tired or experience fatigue. Other signs of vitamin C deficiency are bleeding of the gums and slow healing wounds, even when blood sugar is at normal levels. Vitamin C deficiency includes inflammation and oxidative stress and immune deficiencies, among others.
Who are vulnerable to having vitamin C deficiency? Those who are not eating 90% of the required vitamin C have a high risk of developing diseases related to this vitamin deficiency. So, it is essential to consume vitamin C foods regularly and prevent all these.
But when you eat vitamin C high foods regularly and still not getting the benefits of vitamin C, then you might have malabsorption issues. If you have this kind of health condition, you may need to consult your doctor and get some medical advice to counter vitamin C deficiency.
The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA)
Keep track of your daily consumption of vitamin C to know if you have a deficiency or overdosage. The factors in knowing your RDA are age and gender. It differs from women who are pregnant and breastfeeding. We also have some recommendations for those who smoke or are exposed as a secondhand smoker.
Now, to have the benefits of vitamin C, the recommendation for infants at ages 0 – 6 months is 40 mg per day, while 7 – 12 months is 50 mg per day. Children have some variations in vitamin C RDA, which includes 15 mg per day for 1 – 3 years old. Then, you will need 25 mg per day for 4 – 8 years old and a little bit higher for 9 – 13 years old, which comes as 45 mg per day.
For teens, the recommended vitamin C is 65 mg per day for girls of 14 – 18 years and 75 mg per day for boys of the same age. In early pregnancy at this age, 80 mg per day is needed, then increase the dosage to 115 mg per day on the lactating period.
Adults, on the other hand, need more vitamin C. At ages 19 and above, men will have to take 90 mg per day. On the other hand, women need 75 mg per day. Pregnant women at this age need 85 mg per day and 120 mg per day for breastfeeding women.
Dosage of vitamin C for smokers and secondhand need an extra 35 mg per day.
When it comes to supplements, vitamin C has a different dosage, depending on the package. For instance, some supplements have 1,000 mg per day. But in multivitamins, vitamin C is at 50 – 100 mg per capsule. You will need to opt for vitamin C supplements if you have a deficiency. However, an overdose of vitamin C has no adverse effect on our health. And it has little side effects on our kidneys if consumed without drinking enough water.
Vitamin C foods
There you have the RDA of vitamin C, which gives the benefits to our health. If you are going to consume healthy foods, we have prepared this vitamin C foods list.
The many benefits of vitamin C go beyond the prevention of some diseases. But what makes vitamin C the essential vitamin in our body—is because of cancer prevention and the boost in our immune system.
Our body is incapable of producing vitamin C. Therefore; we must consume foods that provide the health benefits of vitamin C to increase vitamin C absorption to our body.
You can have many berries as you want, but the highest vitamin C holder among them is the strawberries. Strawberries are also the tastiest berry in the world. It is a package with an abundant amount of fiber and antioxidants, which is useful for reducing oxidative stress and protection of heart from bad cholesterols. One serving of strawberries provides the RDA of vitamin C.
Other than berry, you can have a cherry. The acerola cherry is red fruit in bite-sized. But don’t be easily fooled by its looks, because the acerola cherry contains more vitamin C than an orange. It offers 65 times vitamin C compared to other fruits. Therefore, adding it to your salad and Greek yogurt will be beneficial to your health.
Of course, no doubt that you can have vitamin C from citrus fruits like lemon, limes, oranges and grapefruits. The famous orange juice can provide 93 mg of vitamin C while grapefruit offers 70 mg; both served in a small glass.
Vitamin C does not always come in sour taste. For instance, papaya offers vitamin C. Not just an ordinary amount, but it gives 100% of your RDA. And a plus factor with papaya—it’s great for smoothies and yogurt.
Like papaya, black currant is unimaginable high source of vitamin C. One serving of black currant provides about 180 mg, with potassium, iron and vitamin B. This fruit may not be famous as a source of vitamin C, but you cannot go wrong with this. So try eating some of it.
Consuming vitamin C at a young age makes our respiratory tract stronger than those who avoid it because of its sour taste. So try eating kiwi, green fruit with the right juiciness so that you won’t taste the acidity. It is tricky but beneficial at the same time.
Looking for another juicy fruit with a high amount of vitamin C? Well, look no further because you can have cantaloupe for that. One cup serving will give you approximately 67 mg of vitamin C. Other nutrients that you can get from melons are vitamin A and potassium.
Some fruits are not quite familiar to us, thus exotic fruits. Exotic fruits like guava and Amalaki fruit contains vitamin C, over 250 mg of the RDA.
Aside from vitamin C, guava comes with fiber, folic acid, potassium and other nutrients good for your diet. On the other hand, Amalaki fruit is from India is a nutrient-dense fruit that plays a fundamental role in Ayurvedic pharmacopeia. It is valued for boosting the immune system.
Other than fruits, there are certain vegetables with vitamin C. Bell peppers, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, tomatoes and dark leafy greens are good vitamin C sources.
Eating enough of these vegetables can provide us with the health benefits of vitamin C. Some of these are reducing the risk of heart attack, cataracts, and other diseases related to vitamin C deficiency.
With these vegetables in our meal plan, it can provide more than vitamin C. Many nutrients like fiber, vitamins and minerals can be delivered to our body.
Health benefits of vitamin C
Vitamin C sources have many benefits because of its antioxidant properties. Eating the right amount of ascorbic acid food source can give you the health benefits of vitamin C.
Sufficient amounts of vitamin C rich foods can provide adequate amounts of collagen that strengthen connective tissues and bones. This vitamin is famous for the prevention of common cold and cough. It also offers proper absorption of iron, which enhances the body’s resistance to infection. Also, you can have vitamin C to fight viruses.
The benefits of vitamin C go beyond common cold and cough — one of the critical roles of vitamin C in reducing the risk of hypertension. Hypertension develops cardiovascular diseases if not prevented during its early stages.
For health conditions that involve blood vessels like congestive heart failure, atherosclerosis, high cholesterol, among others, it needs adequate amounts of vitamin C rich foods. This vitamin provides proper dilation of blood vessels, making it one of the amazing benefits of vitamin C foods. It also protects our cardiovascular system from following medical conditions brought by an unhealthy lifestyle.
Reversing the effect of lead exposure to children is also one of the benefits of vitamin C rich foods. The toxicity of lead among the children who have been exposed to it over time makes abnormal development and growth. Common symptoms of lead toxicity are behavioral problems, learning disabilities and sometimes low IQ levels.
Lead toxicity also has adverse effects on adults like damage in kidneys and an increase in blood pressure. Therefore, an adequate amount of vitamin C from childhood going to adolescents is significant. It gives protection from lead toxicity. And if unavoidable in urban areas, it can reduce the lead levels in our blood.
One of the benefits of vitamin C is the improvement of mood and functioning of the brain. The mood swings of an individual happen because of the psychological distress that accumulates a lack of neurotransmitters. So, regular intake of vitamin C can prevent extreme moods like depression, anxiety and stress.
Asthma is another medical condition that can be prevented. We can have the benefits of vitamin C by reducing symptoms of asthma. Vitamin C can protect our body from harmful effects of pollution, which results in asthma and other allergies. Getting daily enough amounts from vitamin C sources can prevent us from developing asthma and other common diseases.
The great benefits of vitamin C help repair wounds by reducing blood sugar levels, making it at an average level. According to the study, increasing the consumption of vitamin C is helping our body to process insulin and glucose. One reason for diabetes is low levels of ascorbic acid. Therefore, one of the benefits of vitamin C in preventing the occurrence of diabetes.
The art of having an adequate amount of vitamin C
Indeed, vitamin C has a vital role to play in our body. Keeping us resistant to diseases and viruses is one of the significant benefits of vitamin C high foods to our health. Each vitamin and mineral is the nutrients that our body needs to balance our health. More so, the benefits of vitamin C are the keys to maintain a healthy body and an enjoyable life.