Foods with vitamin C are easy to find if you know where to look. And that’s a good thing if you are planning to consider this useful and important nutrient for your daily diet. You might already know that vitamin C, also called ascorbic acid, supports a healthy immune system. But the health benefits of vitamin C go way beyond launching strong attacks against germs. With the help of this article, we will try to figure out some of the righteous benefits of Vitamin C rich foods, and will also enlist some of the sources of Vitamin C.
What is Vitamin C
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant, which helps to neutralize unstable molecules called free radicals. When free radicals are left unchecked, they can damage cells through a process called oxidative stress, which can set the stage for various conditions, including cardiovascular disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and diabetes.
Our tissues and skin are solely dependent upon Vitamin C. This useful nutrient is a water-soluble vitamin and it is a key player in the formation of blood vessels, cartilage, muscle, and the skin-smoothing protein collagen. Besides all, it is even more important in collagen formation than protein is.
Benefits of Vitamin C
- Stimulates Collagen Synthesis – The body depends on vitamin C for the synthesis of collagen, which is found in the connective tissue around the body. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body and plays a critical role in connective tissues like those found in our organs and of course our hair, skin, and nails. Many dermatologists found that topically applying vitamin C to the skin led to increased collagen production and younger-looking skin. The increased collagen synthesis also means vitamin C helps wounds heal, according to Oregon State University.
- Leads to Better Absorption – Vitamin C leads to better absorption when combined with iron. Iron supports proper growth and development, aids the body’s ability to deliver oxygen throughout the body, and helps make certain hormones.
- Enhances Brain Functions – Vitamin C also plays a role in neurotransmitter synthesis and cognitive function. Neurotransmitters are important for sending messages from the brain to the rest of the body, and here is where vitamin C accelerates the process of our brain function.
- Prevents Chronic Diseases – Due to its antioxidant properties, Vitamin C is highly regarded as a neutralizer from free radicals. These free radicals are harmful substances produced in the body that cause damage to cells and tissues. The antioxidants in Vitamin C help to protect against the development of serious health conditions, such as cancer or heart disease.
Best Vitamin C Rich Foods for Your Dietary Intake
1.) Citrus Fruits – Citrus fruits are considered one of the best Vitamin C rich foods, they grow on flowering trees and shrubs and have an excellent source of Vitamin C. Vitamin C is an ingredient that helps to boost immunity, thus making you healthy and disease-free. Besides all, citrus fruits have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, which act as a defensive mechanism to keep your body safe against any external virus hit.
2.) Broccoli – Broccoli is considered one of the best Vitamin C rich foods. It is one of the best sources of antioxidant foods, especially vegetables. It has all the necessary antioxidants like carotenoids lutein, zeaxanthin and beta-carotene, which play a pivotal role in fighting cancer and also boost immunity. Many antioxidants get destroyed by heat, but beta-carotene antioxidants become more potent despite cooking the vegetable.
3.) Papaya – Papaya is considered one of the best Vitamin C rich foods. A cup of cubed papaya provides 88 mg of vitamin C. Besides all, consuming papaya includes a reduced risk of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer aids in digestion, improves blood glucose control in people with diabetes, lowers blood pressure, and improves wound healing. Papayas add versatility to recipes and can be pureed for sweet and savoury sauces, soups, or sorbets. Papayas also make for a good marinade, as they have an enzyme called papain which helps tenderize meat by breaking down proteins.
4.) Amla – Indian gooseberry, commonly known as amla, is no less than a superfood since it is considered one of the best Vitamin C rich foods. It is widely used in ayurvedic medical concoctions. It is a rich source of vitamin C and is known for its ability to enhance the natural defence system of the body. Amla can protect from various seasonal diseases and can be easily termed as the best fruit for vitamin C.
Amla is a powerhouse of antioxidants and ancient medicine endorses the consumption of this fruit to prevent the formation of cancer cells. It can be consumed raw, in the form of juice, churna, candy, pickles or supplements. If you are suffering from severe hair loss turn to Indian gooseberry, right away. Massaging the scalp with amla oil strengthens the follicles, and provides lustre while vitamin C prevents premature greying. Amla juice has become quite popular in recent years and it found a place on the menus of many restaurants offering fresh vegetable and fruit juices.
5.) Pineapple – Pineapple is considered one of the best Vitamin C rich foods. One cup of pineapple chunks provides 82 calories, 0.9g of protein, 22g of carbohydrates, and 0.2g of fat. Pineapple is an excellent source of vitamin C. As with the majority of fruits, the calories from pineapple come primarily from carbohydrates. One cup of fresh pineapple chunks contains 22 grams of carbohydrates. Of these 22 grams, 16g are in the form of sugar (fructose) and 2g come from fibre. Despite its signature sweetness, pineapple can be included in any healthy eating plan so long as it’s prepared the right way. Pineapple is low in fat and sodium with an abundance of health-promoting vitamins and minerals.
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as a health advice. We would ask you to consult a qualified professional or medical expert to gain additional knowledge before you choose to consume any product or perform any exercise.