There are very few people who can, hand on heart, say that they obtain the daily recommended vitamin and mineral amounts as per the government guidelines. After all, day-to-day commitments and responsibility often get in the way of tracking our diet so closely! Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is an essential water-soluble vitamin that should be consumed as part of a varied and balanced diet. Read on as we go over everything there is to know about it…
The Functions of Vitamin C
We aren’t exaggerating when we say that vitamin C is an essential vitamin as it is required on a daily basis in order to provide a handful of important functions in the body. For example, ascorbic acid plays a vital role in protecting cells and ensuring that they remain healthy; maintaining the health of skin, blood vessels, bones and cartilage; and assisting in the wound healing process. In fact, it is often well-known that a lack of vitamin C can lead to a disease known as scurvy.
Sources of Vitamin C
As a water-soluble vitamin, ascorbic acid can be obtained as part of your daily diet and there is often no need to look for additional sources through supplements. In fact, you can actually obtain a lot of vitamin C from a wide variety of fruits and vegetables like peppers, strawberries, blackcurrants, broccoli, brussel sprouts as well as citrus fruits like oranges. A lot of people like to get their vitamin C from shop-bought fresh orange juice, however it is important to remember that these are typically high in sugar so should be consumed in moderation.
Daily Recommended Amount
As a general guide, an adult should try to consume 75mg of vitamin C each day from the foods listed above and those which are similar. On the other hand, children need between 15mg and 75mg depending on their age whereas pregnant or breastfeeding women should try to consume a higher amount of 85-120mg each day.
Certain vitamins, such as ascorbic acid, are easily obtained through the diet which is why supplement versions can be quite harmful as a lot of people end up consuming a lot more than the body requires. Since vitamin C plays such an essential role in the body, it is important that you vary your diet and always ensure that it comes from nutritional sources like fruit and vegetables for the very best results.