What Does Vitamin C Do?

Strawberries are a whole foods source of natural vitamin C.
Photo by Mobius, Wikimedia Commons

When you feel a cold coming on, do you increase your vitamin C intake? If you reach for orange juice, strawberries or other vitamin C-rich whole foods, you're not alone. But, what does vitamin C do for the body and how do I know if I'm not getting enough?

Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, has not been proven to prevent or cure the common cold or flu, according to the Mayo Clinic. But, reaching for vitamin C rich foods will boost your overall health.

The powerhouse vitamin can reduce chances for developing cardiovascular disease and hardening of the arteries. Vitamin C also encourages body tissue growth and functioning, including the formation of connective tissues, collagen, elastin, fibronectin and fibrillin.

Medical professionals often recommend vitamin C supplements for those with cancer, AIDS, tuberculosis and other chronic illnesses. The vitamin expedites wound healing and assists the body in processing carbohydrates, fats and proteins.

Kirkland Vitamin C (500 mg), 500-Count, Tangy Orange, Chewable TabletsIf your body isn't absorbing enough vitamin C from your diet or nutritional supplements, you may notice an increased feeling of fatigue, depression, scurvy or muscle weakness. Tooth loss, oral bleeding and tender gums are another sign of vitamin C deficiency.

So, go ahead and load up on vitamin C-rich foods. Oranges, papaya, red bell peppers, strawberries, kale, grapefruit, broccoli and cantaloupe are natural whole food sources of vitamin C.

Sources and Suggested Further Reading:
Mayo Clinic: Ascorbic Acid (Oral Route)
 The Worlds Healthiest Foods: Vitamin C
NutraSanus: Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid) Information
Drugs.com: Vitamin C Powder

Until next time,
Choose Healthy!

Whole Foods Living


1 comment:

  1. Ascorbic acid is not the complete whole foods vitamin C, just one component of vitamin C.
    I suppose it's a matter of opinion. Most of the ascorbic acid in the U.S. comes from China. That might not matter to some people. Totally agree though, that getting it from your vitamin c rich foods is always the best.


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