13 Benefits of Vitamin C Rich Foods and Supplements - For Health & Skin

Table of Content
About Vitamin C - The 'Antibiotic' Vitamin
Health Benefits of Vitamin C
  • Prevents and Treats Common Cold
  • Helps in the Absorption of Iron
  • Prevention and Treatment of Scurvy
  • Relieves Stress and Depression
  • Reduces High Cholesterol Levels
  • Helps in the Treatment of Cancer
  • Treatment of Nephritis
More Health Benefits of Vitamin C
Rich Sources of Vitamin C
Deficiency Symptoms of Vitamin C
Skin and Hair Benefits of Vitamin C
Precautions

About Vitamin C - The 'Antibiotic' Vitamin
The story of the vitamin C which is also known as ascorbic acid, is the most interesting and fascinating among vitamins and minerals. Vitamin C appears in a white crystal form and it is readily soluble in water. It can be easily destroyed by heat, oxidation, drying and storage. Alkalinity is also distinctly destructive to this vitamin. The absorption of ascorbic acid in to the bloodstream takes place in the upper part of the small intestine. The adrenal and pituitary tissue, brain, pancreas, kidney, liver and spleen have relatively high concentration of vitamin C and the blood cells contain more of this vitamin than the bloodstream. Vitamin C can be excreted by the kidney through urine. When there is large intake of vitamin C per day, the unabsorbed ascorbic acid is largely excreted in faeces and in smaller extent in urine.
The story of the vitamin C which is also known as ascorbic acid, is the most interesting and fascinating among vitamins and minerals. Vitamin C appears in a white crystal form and it is readily soluble in water. It can be easily destroyed by heat, oxidation, drying and storage. Alkalinity is also distinctly destructive to this vitamin. The absorption of ascorbic acid in to the bloodstream takes place in the upper part of the small intestine. The adrenal and pituitary tissue, brain, pancreas, kidney, liver and spleen have relatively high concentration of vitamin C and the blood cells contain more of this vitamin than the bloodstream. Vitamin C can be excreted by the kidney through urine. When there is large intake of vitamin C per day, the unabsorbed ascorbic acid is largely excreted in faeces and in smaller extent in urine. 

Vitamin C is lost from some vegetables during the first few minutes of cooking.
One of the most significant function of vitamin C is the formation of collagen (a protein substance that holds the cells together). Failure to synthesize collagen may result to delay in healing wounds. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that protects the body from the damage of free radicals and helps the body to maintain connective tissues including bones, blood vessels and skin. Ascorbic acid also enhances the absorption of iron which is needed for building new blood cells, buoyant health, vitality and endurance. It promotes healthy gums and teeth and also ensures clear and fresh complexion.

This vitamin is very necessary for proper functioning of the adrenal and thyroid glands and have shown to protect against physical and mental stress. It also counteracts the toxic effects of drugs and provides protection against the harmful effects of toxic chemicals from food, water and the environment.


Health Benefits of Vitamin C
About Vitamin C - The 'Antibiotic' Vitamin  Health Benefits of Vitamin C  Prevents and Treats Common Cold Helps in the Absorption of Iron Prevention and Treatment of Scurvy Relieves Stress and Depression Reduces High Cholesterol Levels Helps in the Treatment of Cancer Treatment of Nephritis More Health Benefits of Vitamin C  Rich Sources of Vitamin C  Deficiency Symptoms of Vitamin C  Skin and Hair Benefits of Vitamin C  Precautions

Vitamin C has been used as therapeutic agent in the treatment of several disease and unhealthy conditions like haematemesis (vomiting of blood), nose bleeds, bleeding piles, Melania (black stools caused by blood in the intestines), erythema nodosum (red nodules in the skin), deep corneal ulcers, anoxia (loss of smell), defective formation of dentine and enamel, periodontitis (bleeding from the gum), inflammation of the tongue, delay in growth and development, rickets and scurvy. Adequate intake of this vitamin with vitamin B complex during the entire period of pregnancy may prevent congenital deformities in babies. Some rich sources of vitamin B complex includes sea foods, eggs, milk, tomatoes, spinach, avocados, banana, watermelon and mangoes.

Prevents and Treats Common Cold
According to Dr Linus Pauling, a noble prize winning scientist, frequent use of vitamin C in the optimum daily amount will prevent common cold and flu. If the cold have already appeared, intake of large doses of vitamin C will relieve the symptoms and shorten its duration. The effectiveness of ascorbic acid in fighting common cold and flu depends on the dosage. Although the preventive ability of vitamin C to prevent cold has not been fully proved by scientists, it has shown to work effectively in reducing severe cold by 8% in adults and 15% in children.

Helps in the Absorption of Iron
As mentioned previously, vitamin C improves and enhances the absorption of iron. Iron is an essential mineral that have some important function in the body. It is necessary for the formation of haemoglobin (red blood cells), transportation of oxygen throughout the body, supports the muscle and also improves the functioning of the brain. Eating foods rich in vitamin C is favourable for people who suffer low level of iron and as a result, it reduces the risk of anemia which is mainly caused by deficiency of iron.


Prevention and Treatment of Scurvy
Vitamin C has been known to be beneficial in scurvy over the years, especially in children. Scurvy is usually as a result of vitamin C deficiency, thus may be prevented by adequate intake of this vitamin. Prolonged scurvy may result to bleeding from the gums and decrease in red blood cells. Vitamin C is an ideal treatment for scurvy in children who suffer from malnutrition due to poverty.



Relieves Stress and Depression
The vitamin C is needed so greatly during stress because the deficiency is likely to occur even if the intake is in the recommended daily amount. It is very helpful in restoring some emotional balance in those who suffer from depression and other uncomfortable conditions. Studies have shown that proper intake of vitamin C improves mood and stimulates libido.

Reduces High Cholesterol Levels
Research have shown that low level of vitamin C produces high level of cholesterol. The administration of vitamin C in the recommendation daily allowance will correct severe atherosclerosis and result in the formation of bile acids and excretion of cholesterol. The intake of vitamin C in large doses by patients suffering from atherosclerosis and high blood pressure, may therefore result in a marked decline in their blood cholesterol and gradual drop in blood pressure. Taking vitamin C in adequate amount may increase the HDL cholesterol and reduce the LDL cholesterol. Hence, vitamin C plays a role in maintaining the cardiovascular health.

Helps in the Treatment of Cancer
Most cancer patients, especially children with leukemia show symptoms of bleeding gum, haemorrhage and bruising which are known to be vitamin C deficiency symptoms. Thus, the intake of a recommended amount of vitamin C will help in this condition.

Treatment of Nephritis
A person that suffers from any kidney diseases is likely to suffer from vitamin C deficiency due to stress, medication and high urinary loss. The danger of haemorrhage is also increased and a mild lack of vitamin C can cause blood to appear in the urine. The intake of vitamin C in this condition should be decided under medical advice.


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More Health Benefits of Vitamin C
  • Vitamin C is a strong antioxidant that strengthens the body's natural defenses and fights against disease and free radicals, thereby boosting the immune system.
  • It reduces the blood uric acid levels and prevent gout attacks.
  • It lowers the risk of cataracts.
  • It is very useful for boosting energy.
  • Vitamin C reduces the release of histamine, thereby preventing allergies.
  • Research shows that vitamin C helps to prevent Alzheimer’s disease and protect against memory loss.
35 Rich Sources of Vitamin C
Source
mcg
Maize
6,000
Parsley
281,000
Drumstick leaves
220,000
Turnip greens
180,000
Cabbage
124,000
Carrot leaves
79,000
Celery leaves
62,000
Radish leaves
81,000
Cauliflower
56,000
Fenugreek leaves
62,000
Turnips
43,000
Green Tomatoes
31,000
Spinach
28,000
Custard apples
37,000
Oranges
30,000
Melons
26,000
Ripe Mangoes
16,000
Sweet potatoes
24,000
Potatoes
17,000
Green Papayas
12,000
Lettuce
10,000
Coconut
7,000
Coconut milk
3,000
Indian Gooseberries
600,000

Guavas
212,000
Orange Juice
64,000
Limes
63,000
Ripe Papayas
57,000
Strawberries
52,000
Sweet limes
45,000
Lemons
39,000
pineapples
38,500
Beef Liver
20,000
Cow Milk
5,000

Deficiency Symptoms of Vitamin C
Deficiency of vitamin C may result to scurvy, skin haemorrhages, deterioration in collagen capillary weakness, soft and swollen gums, anemia, Easy brushing by weakening the blood vessels, painful and swollen joints, weak tooth and bones, poor immunity, fatigue and uncomfortable mood, unnecessary weight gain, frequent nosebleeds, dry and splitting hair, iron deficiency and slow healing of wounds and sores. It may also lead to premature aging, thyroid insufficiency and poor resistance to all infections.


Skin and Hair Benefits of Vitamin C
Vitamin C is highly valued when it comes to skin health. It fights the signs of aging and also boost collagen production. Sun rays causes loss of collagen which leads to aging, wrinkles, sags and hair loss. It also fights free radicals caused by UV radiation. Vitamin C helps to lighten the skin and inhibit melanin production for good skin tone. Absorption of iron is necessary for health hair growth.

Vitamin C is highly valued when it comes to skin health. It fights the signs of aging and also boost collagen production. Sun rays causes loss of collagen which leads to aging, wrinkles, sags and hair loss. It also fights free radicals caused by UV radiation. Vitamin C helps to lighten the skin and inhibit melanin production for good skin tone. Absorption of iron is necessary for healthy hair growth.

Precautions: There are no proven toxic or harmful effects of vitamin C, though excessive intake may give rise to some occasional side effects like diarrhea, excess urination, kidney stones and skin rashes. In this case, the dose should be reduced if any of these symptoms occur.

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