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How well do you know your Vitamin C?

VITAMIN C, also known as ascorbic acid is a water-soluble vitamin, that is, it easily dissolves in water. It is not stored by the body so it must be taken up in food or supplements.

The maximum amount or tolerable intake level an adult can take per day is 2000 mg. Excess amounts are excreted in urine due to the body’s inability to store them.

Amounts taken past the maximum daily limit can lead to diarrhoea and gastrointestinal issues. According to a study on Dietary Antioxidants and Related Compounds, excess vitamin C can cause increased formation of kidney stones in those with existing kidney disease or a history of stones, increased levels of uric acid (a risk factor for gout), and increased iron absorption and overload in individuals with hemochromatosis, a hereditary condition causing excessive iron in the blood.

Benefits

Vitamin C has many benefits to the human body. Its primary function is to make collagen, a fibrous protein in connective tissue that is weaved throughout various systems in the body: nervous, immune, bone, cartilage, and blood. It is a strong antioxidant that can fight free radicals. It plays a big role in the immune system by healing wounds and controlling infections.

Sources

The best sources of this vitamin can be found in fruits and vegetables. Some examples are:
1) Bell peppers
2) Orange
3) Kale
4) Pineapples
5) Papayas
6) Tomatoes
7) Strawberries
8) Broccoli
9) White potatoes
10) Lemon

Deficiency

The most common signs of vitamin C deficiency include:

-Scurvy: The most telltale disease of severe vitamin C deficiency. Symptoms include skin spots caused by bleeding and bruising from broken blood vessels, swelling or bleeding of gums, and eventual loss of teeth, hair loss and delayed healing of skin wounds.

Fatigue and malaise.

-Iron-deficiency anemia due to decreased absorption of non-heme iron.

-Dry and splitting hair.

-Weakened immune system.

References:
-Institute of Medicine (US) Panel on Dietary Antioxidants and Related Compounds. Dietary Reference Intakes for Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Selenium, and Carotenoids. Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); 2000.

-Harvard School of Public Health.

-Byrdie.com

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How well do you know your Vitamin C? 2

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