Vitamin C is an essential micronutrient. Unlike most animals, humans are unable to synthesise vitamin C naturally and can only get it through our diet. Vitamin C plays a crucial role in the growth, development and repair of all body tissues, especially collagen, carnitine and neurotransmitters biosynthesis.
For this reason, we need to ensure we get plenty of vitamin C from the food and drink we consume each day. Below are some of the amazing ways vitamin C can improve our health.
Reduces Your Risk of Heart Disease and Cancer
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant, helping to strengthen your body’s natural defenses against chronic disease. Antioxidants boost your immune system by protecting cells from harmful molecules called free radicals. When free radicals accumulate, they create oxidative stress, a state that has been linked to many chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes and some cancers. Studies show that consuming more vitamin C can increase your blood antioxidant levels by up to 30%.
Slows Skin Ageing
Vitamin C affects cells on both the inside and outside of your body and its powerful antioxidant properties can be beneficial when it comes to ageing. Studies have found that higher vitamin C intakes were associated with a lower likelihood of a wrinkled appearance, dryness of the skin, and a better skin-aging appearance.
Lowers High Blood Pressure
Approximately 1 in 3 Australians aged 18 and over have high blood pressure. High blood pressure puts you at risk of heart disease, which is the leading cause of death globally. Vitamin C can help lower blood pressure in healthy adults as well as those with high blood pressure. Keep in mind that people with high blood pressure shouldn’t rely on vitamin C supplements alone for treatment.
Helps Prevent Iron Deficiency
Iron is another essential nutrient that’s important for making red blood cells and transporting oxygen throughout your body. Vitamin C assists the body in absorbing iron that is normally poorly absorbed, such as plant-based sources of iron. This is useful for people on a meat-free diet. Consuming 100 mg of vitamin C can improve iron absorption by 67%.
Reduces Blood Uric Acid Levels
Uric acid is a waste produced by your body that can crystallise and deposit in the joints. This causes gout, a type of arthritis associated with intense pain and inflammation of the joints. While there isn’t enough research to say for certain, there appears to be a strong link between vitamin C intake and lower uric acid levels in the blood.
Sources of Vitamin C
We should consume at least 75 to 90mg of vitamin C rich foods every day. Good sources of vitamin C include:
- Citrus fruits
- Red cabbage
- Cooked broccoli
- Red and green capsicum
- Sweet potatoes
- Kiwi fruit
Many people use supplements to ensure they meet their daily requirement. Some research also indicates that taking 500mg of vitamin C through supplements increases the likelihood of enjoying the health benefits.
Looking for More Health Advice?
At Releaf Clinics and Dispensaries, our doctors can provide tailored health advice to help you improve your physical and mental health. As a dedicated clinic and dispensary group, we can simplify the consultation process and make it easier for you to access the medicine you need.
Our telehealth consults allow you to access services with Releaf Clinics’ doctors via phone and video chat. Contact us today to chat about how we can help improve your health.