Vitamin C

There has been much in the news in the past several decades about the importance of Vitamin C. Vitamin C can be found in green vegetables and in citrus fruits. Vitamin C is touted as being the cure for the common cold, an aid to curing cancer or prolonging the life of a cancer patient, and a boost for the immune system. Vitamin C is the source for building collagen, which is the connective tissue throughout the body. It builds or maintains blood, bones and skin. It is an antioxidant, so it keeps cells healthy and functioning properly. Some studies show that consumption of Vitamin C reduces the symptoms of allergies in some people. It also protects vitamins A and E, and allows them to do the beneficial work these two vitamins do in the body. Vitamin C also protects fatty acids necessary for a healthy body.

Vitamin C is one of the water soluble vitamins. This means that it isn't stored in the body and that it is expelled through urination when the body doesn't need it. Unlike the water soluble vitamins, fat soluble vitamins are not expelled by the body. They are stored in the fatty tissue and in the liver, thus it is possible to have a build up. The body takes as much of the fat soluble vitamins as it needs out of storage when it requires it. Both water soluble vitamins and fat soluble vitamins are needed for the proper functioning of the body. Without the required amount of vitamins, the body doesn't have what it needs and the individual will suffer symptoms of a vitamin deficiency. This is why many food items have a label giving the amount of ingredients in it and how much of the recommended daily allowance they fulfil.

Some of the foods that contain higher levels of vitamin C are honeydew melons, orange juice, red peppers, strawberries, mangos, mandarin oranges, cantaloupe and kiwi. Citrus fruits such as oranges, tangerines and grapefruit and many types of berries are excellent sources of Vitamin C. Dark green vegetables such as broccoli, tomatoes, potatoes, spinach and turnip greens are also good sources of this vitamin. Since many folks don’t eat their fruits and vegetables as often as they should, they may lack the proper amount of vitamin C. Therefore, a vitamin supplement might be in order.

Vitamin C is also known as ascorbic acid and performs a number of useful and essential functions in the body. It helps to develop and maintain healthy bones, ligaments, tendons, teeth and gums. It promotes the development of collagen which is why it is a good healing agent. Collagen is used in the healing process for bones and skin cuts. Vitamin C also helps build healthy blood vessels and capillaries. Vitamin C may also have something to do with cholesterol levels, according to some new studies, but these studies are not conclusive at this time. People also take vitamin C to fight the common cold and other forms of infection. This is probably why people take Vitamin C to boost their immune system. The vitamin also prevents scurvy and helps the absorption of iron. Vitamin C is also an antioxidant meaning that it prevents cancer-causing agents from forming from nitrates. Linus Pauling believed that vitamin C was responsible for preventing certain kinds of cancers.

Since vitamin C performs so many useful functions for the body, there are many different conditions that indicate a vitamin C deficiency. Lack of Vitamin C causes a condition called scurvy. Scurvy symptoms include bleeding and bruising, hair and tooth loss, joint pain and swelling. If not treated, scurvy could also cause death. More symptoms of Vitamin C deficiency include weak capillaries and skin haemorrhages. The individual will have big black-blue marks on his body, so big that the entire forearm can be covered. Bleeding gums and tooth decay are other symptoms as well as anaemia, nosebleeds and loss of appetite. Wounds will not heal quickly without a sufficient amount of vitamin C and the individual may be plagued by fractures and swollen and painful joints as well as feeling weak.

The recommended amount of Vitamin C per person is 60 milligrams per day. If you are a smoker, you will need to add 35 milligrams per day to this amount, making your total Vitamin C requirement 90 milligrams per day. This is a minimum required amount of Vitamin C. To protect yourself from cardiovascular diseases, take about 400 milligrams of Vitamin C per day. Studies have also shown that people who eat vegetables and fruit 6-7 days per week have 29 percent less incidence of strokes. Another benefit of taking higher levels of Vitamin C is that it seems s to help prevent cancer. People who take Vitamin C or regularly consume foods with Vitamin C have a smaller chance of developing cancers of the colon, mouth, throat, oesophagus, rectum, stomach and lungs.

Vitamin C is present in fruits and vegetables. If an individual doesn't take in enough through normal diet, he can take vitamin C supplements when can be purchased at any drugstore.