It seems like everyone is coming down with a cold lately – even my cat has the sniffles!
And I’m willing to bet that the lovely people at the stores are having a hard time keeping vitamin C pills on the shelf.
So I thought I would tell you a little about this little vitamin.
What is vitamin C?
Two-hundred and fifty years ago, a disease called scurvy killed as many as two-thirds of sailors on long journeys. Luckily, someone fancy discovered that citrus fruits containing vitamin C could prevent scurvy. Vitamin C is also know as ascorbic acid.
Fun fact: Humans, along with monkeys, guinea pigs, fruit bats, and some birds and fish are the only animals that need to eat vitamin C.
Why is vitamin C good for you?
- Promotes formation of collagen, an important protein found in connective tissue, cartilage, bone matrix, tooth dentin, skin, and tendons
- Works as an antioxidant to protect vitamin A, vitamin E, polyunsaturated fatty acids, and iron from destruction
- Promotes iron absorption which is especially helpful for non-meat sources of iron
- Helps with the metabolism of certain amino acids and the synthesis of several hormones and neurotransmitters
- Helps with immune system functioning
- Prevents bleeding gums and pinpoint hemorrhages under the skin
- Prevents scurvy
Despite all of this awesomeness and what you may have heard, there is actually no convincing evidence that large doses of vitamin C prevent colds although supplements may help those who fail to meet their needs through foods.
What are some vitamin C rich foods?
Vitamin C is mainly found in fruits and vegetables and some are better sources than others.
Fun fact: Vitamin C is easily damaged by heat, iron, and copper which is why raw fruits and vegetables are the best sources.
|½ cup red peppers||142|
|1 kiwi fruit||57|
|½ cup cooked Brussels sprouts||49|
|½ cup strawberries||47|
|RDA for adult men||90|
|RDA for adult women||75|
|RDA for men who smoke||125|
|RDA for women who smoke||110|
RDA is the amount of a nutrient that meets the needs of most people of a specified age and sex.
Did you notice strawberries in there? I did!
What’s your favorite vitamin C food?
- Strawberries (projecteatme.wordpress.com)