Vitamin C


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Vitamin C - Food Sources and Deficiency Symptoms

Vitamin C is a water-soluble, antioxidant vitamin, also known as ascorbic acid. Vitamin C, helps in the absorption of iron, and maintain capillaries, bones, and teeth. Humans do not have the ability to make their own vitamin C. Therefore, we must obtain vitamin C through our diet.

Vitamin C is good for the immune defence system. It helps in the protection from bacteias and viruses. It helps in healing wounds.

Functions of Vitamin C:

The main functions of vitamin c are as:-

  • The main function of vitamin c is that is that, it helps in the synthesis of collagen, which is an important component of blood vessels, tendons, ligaments, and bone.
  • Vitamin C also plays an important role in the synthesis of the neurotransmitter , norepinephrine.
  • It is also required for the synthesis of carnitine , a small molecule that is essential for the transport of fat to cellular organelles called mitochondria , for conversion to energy.
  • Vitamin C is a biological reducing agent, it is also linked to prevention of degenerative diseases - such as cataracts, certain cancers and cardiovascular diseases.
  • Vitamin C may also be able to regenerate other antioxidants such as vitamin E.
  • Vitamin C is also involved in the metabolism of cholesterol to bile acids , which may have implications for blood cholesterol levels and the incidence of gallstones.
  • Vitamin C is also a highly effective antioxidant.
  • It helps to protect the body against pollutants.
  • Ascorbic acid also promotes healthy cell development, proper calcium absorption, normal tissue growth and repair - such as healing of wounds and burns.

Deficiency of vitaminC:

Scurvy, is the main disease, that is caused by the deficiency of vitamin C, which is characterized by easily bruised skin, muscle fatigue, soft swollen gums, decreased wound healing and hemorrhaging, osteoporosis, and anemia. The primary cause of vitamin C deficiency is poor diet. Vitamin C deficiency may develop in people who eat only such foods as dried meat, tea, toast, and canned vegetables. Pregnancy, breastfeeding, surgery, and burns can significantly increase the body's requirements for vitamin C and the risk of vitamin C deficiency.

Scurvy in infants is rare because breast milk usually supplies enough vitamin C and infant formulas are fortified with the vitamin.

The symptoms of the deficiency of vitamin C, may include irritability, depression, weight loss, fatigue, and general weakness. The gums become swollen, purple, and spongy. The teeth eventually loosen. Infections may develop, and wounds do not heal.

Acute scurvy is characterized by:

  • easy bruising, or bruising with no apparent cause
  • loose teeth
  • superficial bleeding
  • fragility of blood vessels
  • poor healing
  • compromised immunity
  • mild anemia

Sources of vitamin c:

Vvitamin C, is obtained from fruits and vegetables. Some excellent sources of vitamin C are oranges, green peppers, watermelon, papaya, grapefruit, cantaloupe, strawberries, kiwi, mango, broccoli, tomatoes, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage, and citrus juices or juices fortified with Vitamin C.

Vitamin C is sensitive to light, air, and heat, so it is best to eat fruits and vegetables raw, or minimally cooked in order to retain their full vitamin C content.

The following list contains sources for vitamin C in descending order, from greatest to least.

Peppers, red chili
Peppers, red sweet
Kale leaves
Collar leaves
Turnip greens
Peppers, green sweet
Brussels sprouts

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