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Vitamin C Advantages: Explore Its Importance to Health

Vitamin C, also called ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble essential vitamin that the human body is unable to synthesise. Subsequently, it’s vital to intake vitamin C from dietary sources. Vitamin C performs many vital physiological roles within the body. It’s a robust antioxidant that helps with the prevention of diseases akin to diabetes, cataracts, atherosclerosis, heart diseases, and cancer.



Beneficial Intake of Vitamin C

Based on the National Institute of Health (NIH), the present really useful dietary allowance for vitamin C is as follows:

Age Male Female
0-6 months 40 mg 40 mg
7-12 months 50 mg 50 mg
1-3 years  15 mg 15 mg
4-8 years 25 mg 25 mg
9-13 years 45 mg 45 mg
14-18 years 75 mg 75 mg (pregnancy-80 mg, lactation- 115 mg)
19+ years 90 mg 75 mg (pregnancy-85 mg, lactation- 120 mg)
Smokers require 35 mg/day more vitamin C than non-smokers. 

Health Advantages of Vitamin C

Fights Against Free Radicals

It is not any secret that vitamin C is a robust antioxidant. Antioxidants assist in strengthening the immune system. It helps to guard the cells from free radicals. Too many free radicals cause oxidative stress that causes various chronic diseases like cancer, Neurodegenerative diseases (akin to Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s), Arthritis, Chronic inflammation and age-related eye conditions (like cataracts and age-related macular degeneration). Vitamin C neutralises free radicals and prevents cellular damage. Studies claim it has free radical scavenging and pro-oxidative aspects.

Regulates High Blood Pressure

Vitamin C assists in reducing hypertension by acting as a diuretic. It encourages the kidneys to remove excessive sodium and water from the body and relaxes the blood vessel partitions, lowering blood pressure. Scientific studies indicate that taking vitamin C supplements can result in a decrease in each the upper (systolic) and lower (diastolic) numbers of your blood pressure reading. In simpler terms, it might assist in lowering each the upper and lower values if you measure your blood pressure.

Fights Heart Diseases

Vitamin C reduces the center disease risk by lowering high triglycerides or LDL levels of cholesterol. It decreases the risks of plaque buildup in arteries, thereby stopping stroke and atherosclerosis. A severe lack of vitamin C resulted in various cardiovascular diseases.  

Reduces Blood Uric Acid Levels

The body releases uric acid as a waste product. Its high concentrations have the potential to crystallise and accumulate within the joints, resulting in gout. It causes terrible pain and inflammation within the joints. Studies suggest that vitamin C helps in reducing blood uric acid levels and stopping gout. 

Prevents Iron Deficiency

Iron absorption and iron metabolism rely upon vitamin C. By combining with ferric iron to generate a chelate at an acidic pH that’s soluble on the alkaline pH of the duodenum; vitamin C helps the body absorb iron. Essentially, because of this vitamin C stops ferrous iron from oxidising to ferric iron by making the stomach’s pH higher. 

Slows Ageing 

Vitamin C’s antioxidant qualities are advantageous for stopping ageing. Vitamin C boosts collagen, which prevents skin sagging. When applied to the skin, it helps recent collagen turnover. It also protects skin cell protein from getting damaged. Studies have proved vitamin C serum helps to delay ageing and visual signs of biological skin ageing, giving your skin a fresh, shiny, young look. 

Reduces the Risk of Cancer

Vitamin C, as an antioxidant, helps reduce cancer risk by neutralising harmful free radicals that may damage DNA and result in cancerous mutations. Moreover, it supports the immune system, aiding within the elimination of cancerous cells. While it’s not a direct cancer preventative, a food regimen wealthy in vitamin C can contribute to a reduced cancer risk by promoting cellular health and immune system functionality.

Summary

Vitamin C offers a large number of health advantages. It functions as a potent antioxidant, combating free radicals and protecting against chronic diseases. Moreover, it aids in regulating blood pressure, lowering levels of cholesterol, and stopping plaque buildup in arteries. Vitamin C also lowers uric acid levels, stopping painful conditions like gout. It promotes iron absorption, stopping iron deficiency, and contributes to youthful skin by boosting collagen production. Furthermore, its immune-boosting and DNA-protecting properties make it a precious consider reducing cancer risk. Overall, vitamin C is a flexible nutrient that supports overall health and well-being.

10 Best Sources of Vitamin C

Below are a few of one of the best sources of vitamin C. 

Citrus Fruits 

Citrus fruits like oranges (53.2 mg/100 g), kiwis (92.7 mg/100 g), lemons (53 mg/100 g), grapefruits (31.2 mg/100 g), and cherries (7 mg/100 g) have a wonderful vitamin C content. The antioxidants in citrus fruits contribute to healthy skin by combating free radicals.

Read More: Citrus Superpower: Humble fruits full of goodness

Berries

Berries like strawberries (58.8 mh/100 g), blueberries (9.7 mg/100 grams), gooseberry (27.7 mg/100 g), raspberries (23 mg/100 g), blackberries (21 mg/100 g) are vitamin-c wealthy and in addition suitable for weight-loss diets. 

Pineapple

This sweet, juicy tropical fruit with spiky, leathery skin is superb in vitamin C. Based on USDA, pineapple consists of 47.8 mg/100 gms of vitamin C. It acts as a fantastic addition to varied desserts or savoury food items. Bromelain, present in pineapple, can have anti-inflammatory properties and support digestion.

Healthy recipes using pineapple

Bell Peppers

Most individuals are unaware of the indisputable fact that bell peppers have a greater vitamin C content than lemons and oranges. USDA states that 100 g of bell pepper incorporates 128 mg of vitamin C. Subsequently, adding it to your food regimen can provide your body with sufficient vitamin C. 

Guava

Guava is a nutrient-dense tropical food that’s amazing so as to add to your every day food regimen. Guavas have a wonderful vitamin C, antioxidants, potassium, and fibre content. It incorporates 228 mg per 100 grams. Guava is a superb source of dietary fibre, aiding in higher digestion and promoting a sense of fullness, making it ideal for weight management.

Read More: Guava – Advantages, Dietary Facts, & Healthy Recipes

Papaya

Papaya is wealthy in vitamin C. It incorporates 60.9 mg per 100 grams. There are many other vital nutrients in papaya. Whether eaten raw or ripe, it has potential health advantages. You may add it to several dishes or desserts. Papaya provides papain, an enzyme that aids digestion and might soothe digestive issues.

Mango

Everyone loves eating mangoes. Mangoes will not be only tasty, but this delicious pulpy tropical fruit has a high vitamin C content. USDA states it incorporates 36.4 mg of vitamin C per 100 g serving. Mangoes have an alkalising effect on the body, which might help maintain a healthy pH balance.

Read More: Mango – Advantages, Nutrition, Calories and Recipes

Lychees

Sweet, small and pulpy lychees have potential antioxidant properties that protect against diabetes, heart diseases, cataracts, oxidative stress, certain cancers, etc. It’s high in vitamin C. There’s 71.5 mg of vitamin C in 100 g of lychees. 

Tomatoes

Tomatoes are low in calories and high in antioxidants. It also has essential amino acids like valine, lysine, arginine, leucine, etc. There’s 17.8 mg of vitamin C in 100 grams of tomatoes. Tomatoes are wealthy in potassium, which lowers blood pressure and reduces heart disease risk. 

Read More: The Phenomenal Health Advantages of Tomatoes

Watermelon

Watermelons are greater than just water and sugar. It has quite a few vital nutrients that provide a wide selection of health advantages. Furthermore, it’s high in antioxidants and vitamins. The vitamin C content of watermelon is high. Based on USDA, 100 grams of watermelon consists of 8.1 mg of vitamin C.

Read More: Watermelon – Advantages, Nutrition and Healthy Recipes

Summary

Strawberries, blueberries, gooseberries, raspberries, and blackberries offer a vitamin C boost, making them suitable for weight-loss diets. Low in calories, tomatoes contain 17.8 mg of vitamin C per 100 grams and are high in antioxidants. Papaya, with 60.9 mg of vitamin C per 100 grams, offers various health advantages and flexibility in cooking. A nutrient-dense tropical fruit, guava incorporates a remarkable 228 mg of vitamin C per 100 grams. Oranges, kiwis, lemons, grapefruits, and cherries are wealthy in vitamin C, with various content levels.

Risks of Vitamin C Overdose 

There are hardly any risks related to vitamin C-rich foods. Vitamin C overdose can also be rare because because it is water soluble, the body excretes the additional amounts inside a number of hours. Nevertheless, if one takes vitamin C supplements, possible risks of overdose may occur. Overdose may result in symptoms akin to digestive distress and kidney stones. Furthermore, patients who’re more susceptible to kidney stones should be cautious with their vitamin C intake. 

Summary

Vitamin C unwanted effects are rare because because it is water soluble, the body excretes the additional amounts inside a number of hours. Nevertheless, overdose may occur by taking vitamin C supplements. That will result in digestive distress. Furthermore, patients who’re more susceptible to kidney stones should be cautious with their vitamin C intake. 

HealthifyMe Suggestion

Heat can reduce the effectiveness of vitamin C because it’s particularly heat-sensitive. To preserve the dietary value of foods or supplements that contain these vitamins, it’s best to avoid high-temperature cooking or storage. As an alternative, consider incorporating it into your food regimen in fresh form. 

So, in case you are making lemon tea or poha and wish so as to add lemon it ought to be added because the last step to get the utmost profit.

The Final Word

Vitamin C has quite a few useful roles within the human body. It assists in stopping cellular damage, cancers, and skin ageing, prevents free radical damage, enhances wound healing, and boosts the immune system. Health experts suggest vitamin C also treats colds, flu, allergies, motion sickness, etc. There are numerous fresh vegetables and fruit high in vitamin C content which are a superb fit to your food regimen to fulfill the every day vitamin C requirements. Nevertheless, keep in mind that vitamin C is heat sensitive; due to this fact, cooking will reduce the vitamin C content. 

Disclaimer: The aim of this text is simply to disperse knowledge and lift awareness. It doesn’t intend to interchange medical advice from professionals. For further information, please contact our certified nutritionists Here.

Ceaselessly Asked Questions

Q. What’s vitamin C, and why is it essential for the body?

A. Vitamin C can also be often known as ascorbic acid. It’s a water-soluble vitamin. It’s a potent antioxidant and has several health advantages. The human body is unable to synthesise it. Subsequently, it’s vital to intake vitamin C from dietary sources.

Q. What are the first natural sources of vitamin C?

A. There are numerous natural sources of vitamin C. They’re kiwi, bell peppers, guavas, oranges, tomatoes, lemons, mangoes, papayas, etc. Berries are also very high in vitamin C content. Some examples include strawberry, blackberry, gooseberry, and blueberry.  

Q. Can vitamin C help boost the immune system?

A. Actually, vitamin C promotes the activity of white blood cells (WBC). Additionally it is a robust antioxidant. 

Q. How does vitamin C contribute to skin health?

A. Vitamin C’s antioxidant qualities are advantageous to skin health. Furthermore, vitamin C boosts collagen and prevents your skin from sagging. It also delays visible signs of biological skin ageing.

Q. Are there potential advantages of vitamin C for wound healing?

A. Vitamin C has wound-healing properties. It’s involved in all phases of wound healing because it performs a vital role in neutrophil apoptosis and clearance. Furthermore, it has potential contributions towards tissue healing, repair and regeneration.

Q. Can vitamin C act as an antioxidant within the body?

A. Actually, vitamin C is an antioxidant that protects the body from oxidative stress. It also fights against free radical damage. Studies have demonstrated vitamin C to be an efficient antioxidant that takes part in various vital functions to defend the body from harmful microbes.

Q. Does vitamin C assist in the absorption of iron from plant-based sources?

A. Health experts, dieticians, and scientists claim that vitamin C boosts iron absorption within the body from plant sources. For instance, it helps with iron absorption from oranges, kiwis, guavas, bell peppers, strawberries, tomatoes, and papaya.

Q. Are there links between vitamin C and cardiovascular health?

A. Absolutely! Vitamin C reduces high triglycerides or LDL levels of cholesterol. It decreases the risks of plaque buildup in arteries.

Q. What role does vitamin C play in collagen production?

A. Studies claim vitamin C increases collagen type 1. Collagen is crucial for good skin health. When topically applied to the skin, it helps recent collagen production.

Q. Can vitamin C support eye health and forestall age-related vision issues?

A. Actually, vitamin C can support eye health and forestall age-related vision issues, in keeping with studies. It helps prevent cataracts, protects eyes against UV light damage, and avoids age-related macular degeneration.

Q. Are there potential cognitive advantages of vitamin C for brain health?

A. Studies have shown the potential cognitive advantages of vitamin C for brain health. It promotes mental alertness, response time, concentration, and memory.

Q. Can vitamin C help reduce the danger of certain chronic diseases?

A. Absolutely! Vitamin C prevents and treats various diseases akin to diabetes, heart disease, cancer, etc. Health experts suggest vitamin C also treats colds, flu, allergies, motion sickness, and helps in strengthening the immune system and supports wound healing.

Q. Are there interactions or unwanted effects of excessive vitamin C consumption?

A. Vitamin C unwanted effects are rare because because it is water soluble, the body excretes the additional amounts inside a number of hours. Nevertheless, overdose may occur by taking vitamin C supplements. That will result in digestive distress. Furthermore, patients who’re more susceptible to kidney stones should be cautious with their vitamin C intake.

Q. How does vitamin C compare to other vitamins and supplements for health?

A. Vitamin C has powerful antioxidants that prevent free radical damage to the cells. Vitamin C supplements are more energetic, less toxic, and readily absorbable by the body.

Q. What’s the really useful every day intake of vitamin C for adults and youngsters?

A. The precise value is determined by the age and gender of the person. The really useful vitamin C for 7 to 12 months is 50 mg. For 1 to three years, it’s 15 mg. For 4 to eight years, it’s 25 mg; for 9 to 13 years, it’s 45 mg. For 14 to 18 years, it’s 75 mg (each female and male). For adults above 19 years, 90 mg for males and 75 mg for females.

Research Sources

VitaminC-HealthProfessional

Two Faces of Vitamin C—Antioxidative and Pro-Oxidative Agent

Effects of vitamin C supplementation on blood pressure: a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials

Vitamin C and Heart Health: A Review Based on Findings from Epidemiologic Studies

Vitamin C Intake and Serum Uric Acid Concentration in Men

Treatment efficacy of vitamin C or ascorbate was given as co-intervention with iron for anaemia – A scientific review and meta-analysis of experimental studies.

The Roles of Vitamin C in Skin Health

The Role of Vitamin C in Cancer Prevention and Therapy: A Literature Review

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on Oranges

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on Kiwi 

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on lemon

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on grapefruit

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on strawberries

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on blueberries

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on gooseberries

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on raspberries

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on blackberries

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on pineapples

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on peppers

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on tomato

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on Guava

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on papaya

Data by the US Department of Agriculture on mango

https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/1102668/nutrients

https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/167765/nutrients

Effect of vitamin C and its derivatives on collagen synthesis and cross-linking by normal human fibroblasts

Vitamin C Status and Cognitive Function: A Systematic Review

Vitamin C and the Lens: Latest Insights into Delaying the Onset of Cataract

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