Here is Why Vitamin C is So Crucial to the Human Body

C for crucial & collagen

Photo from amoon ra on Unsplash

Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin that is found in various foods. Water-soluble vitamins are not stored in the body and because of this, they must be consumed daily either through food or a supplement.

Its main benefits are:

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps support the immune system and can reduce the risk of many diseases.

Vitamin C helps lower the risk of heart disease.

Vitamin C boosts collagen production which helps support skin health.

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps support the immune system and can reduce the risk of many diseases.

As we naturally age, we become more susceptible to infections and diseases as our immune system weakens. The immune system has a harder time fighting off pathogens and this can lead to many problems. Antioxidants assist the immune system and thus getting enough antioxidants from food helps in keeping the immune system strong.

Vitamin C acts as an antioxidant which helps protect your cells against free radicals. Free radicals are unstable molecules that have unpaired electrons and because of this, they steal electrons from other cells which causes widespread damage and can lead to disease.

Consuming enough vitamin C helps supply the body with ample amounts of antioxidants which over the long run can help prevent many diseases. Antioxidants have been shown to prevent diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, etc.

It is commonly believed that intaking a vitamin C supplement every day can help treat or even prevent a cold. However many studies have shown that taking daily vitamin C doesn’t reduce the risk of getting a cold. On the other hand, research has shown that vitamin C shortens the length of a cold and decreases the severity of the illness.

A 2013 review from the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews showed that people who took at least 200 mg of vitamin C regularly over the course of the trial recovered from the cold faster than participants who took a placebo. Adults and children who took vitamin C saw an 8% and 14% reduction respectively in the duration of their cold compared to the placebo group.

This illustrates that while vitamin C can’t prevent a cold, it helps support the immune system by providing extra support which helps get over a cold faster.

Vitamin C helps lower the risk of heart disease.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death worldwide. As we age, heart disease becomes more prevalent with heart attacks and coronary blockages occurring mostly in the elderly.

Atherosclerosis is the buildup of fats and cholesterol along the arterial wall. When this blockage becomes large enough to the point where it starts blocking a majority of the blood flow to the heart, a heart attack ensues. A major predisposing factor to atherosclerosis is LDL oxidation. Since vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant, it can help prevent this LDL oxidation which helps reduce the occurrence of atherosclerosis.

An analysis of 13 studies found that taking at least 500 mg of vitamin C daily reduced LDL cholesterol by 7.9 mg/dL and triglycerides by 20.1 mg/dL.

Additionally, high blood pressure is another predisposing factor for cardiovascular disease. High blood pressure puts too much strain and stress on the blood vessels which by making arteries less elastic can lead to a decrease in blood flow and heart disease.

Vitamin C helps relax blood vessels which in turn lowers blood pressure and reduces the stress on the cardiovascular system.

A research study showed that vitamin C supplements on average reduced systolic blood pressure by 4.9 mmHg and diastolic blood pressure by 1.7 mmHg.

Vitamin C boosts collagen production which helps support skin health.

Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body making up around 75–80% of human skin. As we age, collagen production starts to decline which can cause premature aging, wrinkles, etc.

This is where vitamin C can help.

Vitamin C is the co-factor for prolyl hydroxylase & lysyl hydroxylase. Both of these hydroxylase enzymes catalyze the hydroxylation of proline & lysine residues of procollagen which helps the collagen molecule properly fold into its triple-helix structure.

Thus, vitamin C is directly involved in collagen production which overall helps improve the skin. Since vitamin C is also an antioxidant, it helps fight off skin damage caused by UV rays and helps diminish the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Vitamin C helps in the growth and repair of tissue which helps keep the skin healthy and firm. It helps heal wounds primarily through the formation of collagen which helps build connective tissue.

Vitamin C is such an important vitamin to the body. Foods with the most vitamin C are:

Oranges (medium size): Provides 70 mg

Strawberries (150g): Provides 89 mg

Guavas (100g): Provides 200 mg

Mangos (1 cup): Provides 60 mg

The Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) of vitamin C is 75–90 mg.

If you want to learn more about the benefits of vitamin C, feel free to check out my other article: Here Is Why Everyone Is Raving About Vitamin C Serum

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Samir S.

Samir S.

Writing to Inform, Educate, & Teach | Obsessed with Health & Wellness | https://samir-s.medium.com/subscribe