Vitamin C, or ascorbic acid, is an essential vitamin required by the body to convert carbohydrates into glucose and thus provide energy to the cells that need it. This nutrient also works with folic acid and some B vitamins to produce healthy new cells, collagen, and neurotransmitters in the brain and central nervous system. Vitamin C can be found in foods such as fruits, vegetables, fish, and meat; but it’s hard to get enough from food alone, which is why supplementation is also important for maintaining optimal levels of this vitamin in your system. Learn more about what Vitamin C does in the body here.
Health Benefits of Vitamin C
1. Boosts Immunity
High doses of vitamin C can potentially prevent or slow the progression of osteoarthritis. It may also reduce the severity and duration of colds, flu, and other respiratory illnesses when taken at the first sign of symptoms. Additionally, one study found that vitamins C and E combined may protect against sun damage by reducing the risk of skin cancer by 36%.
2. Reduces Inflammation
Vitamin C has been shown to reduce inflammation in the body, including reducing the risk of inflammatory bowel disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and asthma. The antioxidant properties of vitamin c also help protect cells from damage. The recommended daily allowance (RDA) for adults is 90 mg per day.
3. Aids in Wound Healing
It aids in wound healing by promoting the proliferation of fibroblasts and encourages the growth of new skin cells. It also stimulates collagen production, which helps wounds heal faster.
4. Prevents Scurvy
It’s best known for its ability to prevent and cure scurvy, a disease caused by a lack of vitamin C. Scurvy causes bleeding gums, bruising, and skin discoloration due to the body not being able to produce collagen. A person with scurvy will feel tired and weak and have difficulty healing from wounds or injuries.
5. Promotes Healthy Skin
Vitamin C is a nutrient that supports the synthesis of collagen, which maintains the skin’s elasticity and appearance. It also has antioxidant properties to neutralize free radicals in the body, which can lead to skin damage. The body does not produce vitamin c on its own, so people need to get it through diet or supplements.
6. Reduces Risk of Heart Disease
It’s an essential nutrient that humans need to maintain a healthy lifestyle. It helps strengthen the immune system and protects against common illnesses like the flu. Plus, it’s been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease.
7. Lowers Blood Pressure
It can help lower blood pressure, increase your immunity and make you look younger. It’s also an antioxidant that helps fight free radicals, which are harmful molecules that can damage cells in the body.