Eating foods that are high in vitamin C can help prevent conditions such as cardiovascular disease, strokes, cancer, and the common cold. Foods high in vitamin C include: oranges, grapefruits, strawberries, sweet red peppers, tomatoes, and broccoli.
Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin needed for the growth and repair of tissues in all partsof the body. It is one of many antioxidants.
Vitamin C is essential for the formation of collagen, an important protein that is used to make skin, tendons, scar tissue, ligaments, and blood vessels. It is necessary for the healing of wounds, and for the repair and maintenance of bones, teeth, and cartilage.
Vitamin C also acts as an antioxidant. Antioxidants are nutrients that provide some protection against various health conditions such as heart disease, arthritus, and cancer. Like other antioxidants, vitamin C blocks some of the damage that is caused by free radicals. Free radicals are by-products that occur when our bodies transform food into energy. Antioxidants also help to reduce damage to the body that is caused by toxic chemicals and pollutants such as cigarette smoke.
A large amount of vitamin C is used by the body during any kind of healing process including: healing from an infection, disease, injury, or surgery. During that period, extra vitamin C may be needed.
Symptoms of vitamin C deficiency include dry and splitting hair, gingivitis, bleeding gums, dry and scaly skin, anemia, decreased wound-healing rates, weakened enamel of the teeth, easy bruising, swollen and painful joints, nosebleeds, decreased ability to ward off infection, and possibly weight gain due to slowed metabolic rate and energy expenditure.
Note: A variety of medical conditions can lead to the symptoms mentioned above. Therefore, it is important to have a physician evaluate them so that appropriate medical care can be given.
Taking high doses of vitamin C can cause diarrhea, gas, and acid indigestion (upset stomach).
Caution: Eating natural foods that are high in vitamin C is the safest and healthiest way to get an adequate supply of the nutrient. Due to risk of toxicity, individuals should always consult with a knowledgeable health care provider before starting doses of supplements. Before giving supplements to children, it is recommended that you first consult with their pediatrician. Also, some supplements may interfere with medications. If you are taking medication, it is recommended that you consult with your physician before taking any supplements. All supplements should be kept in childproof bottles and out of children’s reach.
Sweet red pepper, raw, chopped, ½ cup – (141 mg)
Strawberries, whole, 1 cup – (82 mg)
Orange juice ¾ cup – (75 mg)
Orange 1 medium – (70 mg)
Grapefruit juice ¾ cup – (60 mg)
Broccoli, cooked, ½ cup – (58 mg)
Grapefruit ½ medium – (44 mg)
Potato, baked, 1 medium – (26 mg)
Tomato 1 medium – (23 mg)