Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Vitamin C : Sources, Daily Requirements, Functions In Our Body, Deficiency, Hipervitaminosis

Vitamin C : Sources, Daily Requirements, Functions In Our Body, Deficiency, Hipervitaminosis

Deficiency of Vitamin C
Vitamin C

Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid) is a water-soluble vitamin found in a lot of fruits and vegetables. It cannot be produced by our body and also our body cannot store it, which means we need it from our diet every day to maintain adequate levels of Vitamin C in our body. Vitamin C plays an important role in number of bodily functions including the production of Callogen, L-carnitine and some neurotransmitters. It also helps metabolize protein and it's antioxidant activity may reduce the risk of some cancers. Vitamin C is the most sensitive of all vitamins to heat.

Sources Of Vitamin C :

The main dietary sources of Vitamin C are fresh fruits and green leafy vegetables. Traces of Vitamin C occur in fresh meat and fish but scarcely in cereals. When you regularly has consumed diet rich in fruits and vegetables, then you are probably are getting enough Vitamin C. Here are the list of Foods (having highest amount of Vitamin C) that are very healthy and easily available.
Source of vitamin C
Sources of Vitamin C

Guava : Guava is very rich of Vitamin C. One medium-sized Guava contains about 125 mg of Vitamin C.

Amla Or Indian Gooseberry : Amla or Indian Gooseberry is one of the excellent sources of Vitamin C. Every 100 gm of Amla contains 41.6 mg of Vitamin C.

Orange : One full glass of 240 ml orange juice contains near about 125 mg of Vitamin C. So you only need to take one serving that can supply enough Vitamin C to your body. If you eat one whole orange of average size, you are supplied with Vitamin C of 50 mg and its flesh containing fiber helps you to promote easier digestion.

Grapefruit : One normal-sized Grapefruit is packed with about 90 mg of Vitamin C. In an average, every 100 gm of Grapefruit contains 37 mg of Vitamin C.

Green Pepper : This kind of medium-sized bell pepper contains 95 mg of Vitamin C, which supply your body sufficient amount of Vitamin C of one full day.

Red Sweet Pepper : It is quite similar to green pepper, but only difference is they taste milder in flavour. One red sweet pepper contains upto 150 mg of Vitamin C.

Pineapple : Pineapple is an another delicious fruit which contains about 56.4 mg of Vitamin C in 100 gm sliced pineapple.

Papaya : One large papaya is packed with about 230 mg of Vitamin C. So, one cup of sliced papaya supplies you enough amount of Vitamin C.

Kale : It is also often used as salad. One cup of raw kale contains about 80 mg of Vitamin C and Kale is also rich in Vitamin A, Calcium and Iron.

Snow Pea : One cup of cooked snow peas contains about 75 mg Vitamin C. It is also rich source of Vitamin A, Vitamin K, calcium and protein.

Strawberry : Strawberry is often easily added into oatmeal, cereal or yogurt as a healthy breakfast. With eating just 100 gm of strawberry slices, you may get 58.8 mg of Vitamin C supply.

Kiwifruit : This one green little fruit can provide 60 mg of Vitamin C. It also consumed for weight loss and healthy digestion.

Brussels sprout : One cup of cooked Brussels sprout contains 96 mg of Vitamin C and it is also rich in fiber which improves digestion. It acts as antioxidant for healthier looking skin.

Tomato : One raw tomato contains about 20 mg of Vitamin C.

Cobbage : One cup of cooked cabbage has about 60 mg of Vitamin C.

Cauliflower : One cup cooked cauliflower has about 30 mg of Vitamin C, and also rich in fiber, calcium, potassium, folate and Vitamin K.

Broccoli : One cup of chopped cooked broccoli contains about 50 mg of Vitamin C. It also provides great nutrients of calcium, potassium, fiber, Vitamin A and Vitamin K.

Honeydew Melons : You can get around 30 mg of Vitamin C from one cup of honeydew melon balls. It also contains potassium, Vitamin B complex and Vitamin K.

Cantaloupe : Every 100 gm of cantaloupe contains about 36.7 mg of Vitamin C. Thus, by eating just one cup of cubed cantaloupe, you consume about 60 mg of Vitamin C in your body.

Potato : One medium-sized potato contains about 10 mg of Vitamin C.

Lemon : Just one lemon can supply your body hoto 31 mg of Vitamin C.

Blackcurrant : Blackcurrant provide your body about 60 mg of Vitamin C per 100 gm.

Litchi : 100 gm of Litchi contains about 71.5 mg of Vitamin C.

Clementine : 100 gm of Clementine contains hoto 48.8 mg of Vitamin C.

Mulberry : 100 gm of Mulberries supply your body about 36.4 mg of Vitamin C.

Mango : 100 gm of sliced mango contain hoto 27.7 mg of Vitamin C.

Functions Of Vitamin C in Human Body :

Aside from its ability to prevent Scurvy, Vitamin C is also essential for many metabolic processes.

(1) Vitamin C is essential for the synthesis and maintenance of collagen. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body. It comprises about 25% to 35% of the total protein content in the body. Its strong, connective, elongated fibrils are found in skin, ligaments, tendons, cartilage, bone, blood vessels, the intestines, and the discs between spinal vertebrae. It is also found in the cornea and in muscle tissue.

(2) Vitamin C helps to protect the skin by promoting the production and migration of fibroblasts that support normal wound healing.

(3) Vitamin C protects the skin from wrinkles seen in premature aging.
(4) High concentration of Vitamin C stimulate the synthesis of type IV collagen, which has important filtration characteristics in the kidney, the blood-brain barrier, and the arterial lining.

(5) Vitamin C has a major role in synthesis of Basement Membrane which has important functions in the kidneys, lungs, etc.

(6) Vitamin C maintains the gel-like state of the basement membrane, helping to suppress tumor invasion through the basement membrane. In addition, basement membrane functions as a restrictive barrier to prevent cancer cells from passing deeper into tissues.

(7) Vitamin C accelerates the deposition of other important basement membrane protein in the area between the dermis and epidermis.

(8) Vitamin C is an essential cofactor for the synthesis of carnitine - an amino acid that is necessary for the transport of fatty acids into mitochondria. This transfer of fatty acids is a key factor in the production of the ATP that is necessary for cellular energy.

(9) Vitamin C has direct involvement in the synthesis of neurotransmitters (like norepinephrine) that facilitate the electric flow between neurons and nerve cells in the body and in the brain. The body's ability to respond to the external and internal environment, as well as the brain's ability to think and to remember, is dependent on these essential substances.

(10) Vitamin C promotes calcium incorporation into bone tissues. It also protects against leaching of calcium out of the bones, and fights the oxidative stress that works against assimilation.

(11) Vitamin C also stimulates the formation of the cells that incorporate calcium into bone tissue (osteoblasts) and inhibits the development of cells that dissolve calcium out of bone tissues (osteoclasts).

(12) Vitamin C is also required in collagen cross-linking, needed to form the dense matrix for optimal bone strength.

(13) As a powerful antioxidant, Vitamin C fights oxidative stess in bone tissues and may also protect against damage caused by harmful molecules (free radicals), toxic chemicals, pollutants.

(14) Vitamin C has a major role in functions and maintenance of Immune System of human body, such as –
  • Production of interferons
  • Functions of phagocytes, Nitric oxide production by phagocytes
  • Cytokine production by white blood cells
  • Cell-mediated immune response
  • T-lymphocyte and B-lymphocyte proliferation
  • Antibody production and complement activity
  • Natural killer cell activity
  • Detoxification of histamine
  • Neutralization of oxidative stress
  • Immune response to vaccination
  • Prostaglandin formation
  • Cyclic GMP levels in lymphocytes

(15) Vitamin C inhibites various forms of T-lymphocyte death and Neuraminidase production.

(16) Vitamin C can help to manage blood chemistry levels - Vitamin C is helpful in managing blood pressure, blood cholesterol and blood uric levels that can help lower heart disease risk factors.

(17) It can help to prevent iron deficiency by improving iron absorption.

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Daily Requirements of Vitamin C :

The daily requirements of Vitamin C generally depends on your age. According to National Institute of Health (NIH), the recommended dietary allowanc (RDA) for Vitamin C for human as follows –
  • For Children - 40 mg to 60 mg per day
  • For Adult Men - 90 mg per day
  • For Adult Women - 75 mg per day
  • For Pregnant Women - 85 mg per day
  • Breastfeeding Women - 120 mg per day
People who smoke have to take more Vitamin C than the average person because smoking depletes Vitamin C in the tissues and blood.

Deficiency Symptoms Of Vitamin C :

Severe deficiency of Vitamin C results in Scurvy. Symptoms of Scurvy can begin within three months of decreased Vitamin C intake. These are the following symptoms of Scurvy –

(1) Dental :
Bleeding gums
Receding gums
Dental caries
(2) Hematological/Connective Tissue
Hemolytic Anemia
(3) Integumentary & Rheumatological
Impaired wound healing
Follicular hyperkeratosis
'Coiled' hairs
Perifollicular hemorrhage
Joint Pain
Sjogren's syndrome
(4) Systemic

It is to be noted that any/some of the above symptoms may be developed in your body at a time due to deficiency of Vitamin C.

Hypervitaminosis Of Vitamin C :

As Vitamin C is water soluble, our body will process excess vitamin C and pass it out in urine to avoid toxification. However, excess intake of Vitamin C for a long time may lead to hypervitaminosis of Vitamin C causing –
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Insomnia
  • Formation of oxalate stones in kidney
  • The excessive consumption of vitamin C may aggravate iron storage disease in patients of thalassemia or hemochromatosis due to excess absorption of iron from intestine.

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