Do you know that vitamin C benefits are numerous and are one of the essential vitamins your body is unable to produce?
Vitamin C is one of the crucial vitamins that helps form and maintain bones, skin, and blood vessels.
Moreover, it is an antioxidant. It is found in some foods, especially fruits and vegetables, however, you can also take it in the form of supplements.
Other names of vitamin C are L-ascorbic acid, ascorbic acid, and L-ascortate.
Vitamin C is water-soluble and the daily recommended intake is 75 mg for women and 90 mg for men.
While it is commonly advised to get vitamin C intake from foods, many individuals choose to use supplements to meet their required intake.
Keep on reading to learn more Vitamin C benefits, recommended values, and why it is important for your body.
Why do you need Vitamin C?
Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin and your body cannot store it. To maintain the appropriate amount of domain C, you need to consume foods that contain it every day.
Your body needs vitamin C for different functions that are as follows:
It helps your body to produce collagen, L-carnitine, and some neurotransmitters.
Vitamin C is an antioxidant and helps to remove unwanted substances or reactive oxidative species, POS from your body.
Moreover, it helps your body to absorb iron, boost your immune system, and enhance the wound healing process.
ROS are substances like free radicals that result from natural bodily processes, exposure to pollution, and other environmental factors.
The antioxidant activity can help reduce inflammation and lower the risk of developing various conditions which also include some types of cancers.
Your body needs vitamin C to produce collagen which is the main component of connective tissues and makes up to 1 to 2% of the muscle tissue.
It is important to note that collagen is an important component in fibrous tissues like tendons, ligaments, skin, the cornea, cartilage, bones, the gut, and blood vessels.
However, low levels of this vitamin in your body can lead to scurvy.
Symptoms of this condition are swollen joints, bleeding gums, and loose teeth, anemia, and tiredness.
Requirements of Vitamin C
According to the Office for Dietary Supplements, you need to consume the following recommended daily allowances RDA per day:
Moreover, it is important to discuss or seek medical advice on the dose in case of vitamin C deficiency.
Now let’s discuss Vitamin C benefits in detail.
Vitamin C benefits: Help reduce Blood Uric Acid and Prevent Gout
It is very painful and involves inflammation of the joints, especially in the big toes.
Moreover, if you have gout, you can experience swelling and sudden, severe attacks of pain.
Gout symptoms appear when there is too much uric acid in your blood.
Uric acid is the waste that your body produces and at high levels, it may crystalize and deposit in the joints.
Different studies suggest that one of the vitamin C benefits is that it can help reduce uric acid in the blood and as a result, protects you against bout attacks.
For instance, men who consume vitamin C observed significantly lower blood levels of uric acid than those who consume less amount of it, according to studies.
While there are a number of studies that prove the strong link between vitamin C and uric acid levels, more studies can help to study the effects.
Vitamin C Benefits: Prevents Iron Deficiency
Iron is an important nutrient that helps in a number of functions your body performs.
It is also essential for making red blood cells and transporting oxygen throughout your body.
Moreover, vitamin C supplements can help to improve the absorption of iron for the diet.
It also assists in converting iron that your body poorly absorbs in your body like plant-based sources of iron into a form that is easier to absorb, according to studies.
This is particularly useful if you consume a meat-free diet as meat is a major source of iron.
In fact, consuming 100 mg of vitamin C can help to improve the absorption of iron by 67%, according to studies.
As a result, vitamin C can help reduce the risk of anemia in individuals who are prone to iron deficiency.
Thus, if you have low iron levels, consuming more vitamin C-rich foods can help improve your blood iron levels.
One of the main vitamin C benefits is that it helps to boost your immunity as vitamin C is involved in different parts of the immune system.
First of all, it helps to encourage the production of white blood cells or lymphocytes and phagocytes to protect your body against infection.
Second, vitamin C helps these white cells function more effectively while protecting them from damage by harmful molecules like free radicals.
Thirdly, this vitamin is an important part of your skin’s defense system, and its actively transported to the skin.
There it can act as an antioxidant and help strengthen the barriers to your skin.
Studies indicate that taking vitamin C can shorten wound healing time.
Moreover, low vitamin C levels have been linked to poor health outcomes.
Protects Memory and Thinking as you Age
Dementia is a broad term that helps to describe symptoms of poor thinking and memory.
It is important to note that studies suggest that over 35 million people all around the world suffer from it.
Moreover, studies suggest that oxidative stress and inflammation near your brain, spine, and nerves together known as the central nervous system can increase your risk of dementia.
One of the advantages of vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant.
Low levels of this vitamin may be linked to an impaired ability to think and remember.
Additionally, studies suggest that people with dementia may have lower levels of vitamin C.
Furthermore, high vitamin C intake from foods or supplements provides a protective effect on thinking and memory as your age.
Therefore, taking vitamin C supplements may aid against conditions like dementia.
Risk of Heart Diseases
According to WHO, heart disease is the leading cause of death all around the world.
Many factors can increase the risk of heart disease like high blood pressure, high triglyceride levels or LDL, bad cholesterol levels, and low HDL or good cholesterol levels.
Therefore, vitamin C may help to reduce these risks, in turn, which helps to reduce heart disease risk.
For instance, an analysis of 9 studies indicates that individuals who take at least 700 mg of vitamin C daily show a 25% lower risk of heart diseases than those who don’t.
However, many scientists are unsure whether those who consume vitamin C-rich foods along with a healthy lifestyle than those who take supplements.
In short, consuming at least 500 mg of vitamin C daily can help to reduce the risk of heart disease.
However, if you already consuming it, then supplements may not provide additional heart health benefits.
Manage High Blood Pressure
According to studies, about one-third of Americans suffer from High Blood Pressure.
Moreover, WHO suggests that high blood pressure puts you at a higher risk of heart disease and is the leading cause of death globally.
Studies indicate that vitamin C can help lower blood pressure in both those with or without high blood pressure.
An animal study suggests that taking vitamin C supplements can help reduce systolic blood pressure or the upper value by 2.8 mmHg and diastolic or lower value of blood pressure by 1.5mmHg on average.
While these results are promising, it is not clear theater the effects on blood pressure are long term or not.
Moreover, if you have high blood pressure, then you should not rely on taking vitamin C alone.
Reduce the Risk of Chronic Diseases
Another vitamin C benefit is that it is a powerful antioxidant and helps to strengthen the natural defenses of your body.
Antioxidants are molecules that boost your immune system and it does so by protecting the cells from harmful molecules. i.e. free radicals.
When free radicals accumulate, they can increase oxidative stress in your body, which is linked to many chronic studies according to studies.
Moreover, studies show that consuming more vitamin C can increase your blood antioxidant levels by 30% and it helps to fight inflammation.
Unproven Claims of Vitamin C Benefits
While most vitamin C benefits are backed by scientific evidence, it also has different unproven benefits.
The following are some of them:
Reduce Cancer Risk: A few studies suggest that taking vitamin C can lower your risk of several cancers.
However, most studies indicate that vitamin C does not affect the risk of developing cancer.
Treat Lead Toxicity: Though individuals with lead toxicity appear to have a low level of vitamin C, however, there is no strong evidence that shows vitamin C can treat lead toxicity.
Protect against Eye Diseases: Vitamin C has been linked to reducing risks of eye diseases like cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.
However, vitamin C supplements have no effect or cause any harm.
Prevent Common Cold: While this vitamin appears to reduce the severity of colds and recovery time by 8% in adults and 14% in children, it does not prevent them.
Vitamin C Benefits: Are they Worth it?
Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that you need to take from citrus fruits or supplements. Moreover, studies indicate that it has a number of health benefits.
These include boosting your immune system, protecting against gout, improving iron levels, and reducing heart diseases and dementia risks.
Overall, Vitamin C supplements are great ways to improve your vitamin C intake if you struggle to get them through diet. However, avoid getting a high dose of vitamin C as it can cause complications.