A Guide to Vitamin C

The Vitamin C has got to be the most widely known vitamin these days. It is not surprising because the body needs Vitamin C for over 300 functions. In fact, the Vitamin C has been proved to help protect against heart disease, cancer and other serious illnesses. Without the Vitamin C the body would not be able to heal itself either.

This is because the Vitamin C is vital for the formation of collagen. Whenever a person has a cut or an injury it is the collagen that helps repair the damage and without sufficient Vitamin C this would be almost impossible. Collagen has a multitude of functions in the body, including keeping the organs in place, and it would not be able to do this without sufficient Vitamin C.

The Vitamin C is also an antioxidant for the body and helps other vitamins and minerals to be absorbed better. Folic acid and iron, for example, need the Vitamin C to maximise their usefulness. The more Vitamin C that the body has, the better its defence against colds and other common ailments and the Vitamin C may not prevent a person catching a virus but it does help speed up the recovery process.

There is Vitamin C in almost every fruit and vegetable but some have far higher Vitamin C content than others. Cranberries and melons have high Vitamin C content. In fact, tropical fruits have the highest Vitamin C amounts of all fruit. Hot peppers are amongst the richest sources of the Vitamin C when it comes to vegetables. The hotter the pepper, the higher its Vitamin C content is.

Unfortunately, the Vitamin C is water soluble so many vegetables lose their effectiveness as a Vitamin C provider if they are boiled for a long time. Steaming or quick stir frying vegetables ensures that more of their Vitamin C content is retained. The recommended daily amount of the Vitamin C is easily obtained from eating five portions of fruit and vegetables a day if they are consumed raw or cooked quickly.

Vitamin C supplements are extremely useful to ensure that people obtain sufficient Vitamin C. However, with a balanced diet the amount of Vitamin C the body receives is likely to be sufficient. However, if a person begins feeling tired or lethargic then a Vitamin C supplement will help overcome this. There is no danger of having too much Vitamin C as the body simply excretes the excess.