Virtually everyone will understand the basic concept of vitamins and how they’re essential to human health. Vitamins get categorised by groups and named after letters – some of those letters have numerals after them.
It makes sense to have a balanced diet because it means you absorb the vitamins your body needs each day from different sources, such as food and supplements. While all vitamins are essential, one you should pay particular attention to is vitamin C.
What is vitamin C?
There’s no denying that vitamin C is one of your body’s most needed vitamins. It’s sometimes known as ascorbic acid or ascorbate, and is crucial for several enzymes in your body to function correctly.
“Vitamin C is an essential nutrient involved in the repair of tissue and the enzymatic production of certain neurotransmitters.” Wikipedia
Vitamin C is also essential because it helps your body’s immune system to function correctly.
Without vitamin C, your body will be significantly more susceptible to illnesses that your immune system would otherwise fight off with ease.
Did you know that vitamin C also reduces the length of time your body needs to fight common colds?
It won’t make a difference if you start taking it only when you get a cold, but if you take it on a daily basis as part of your supplement routine then it can reduce the length of a cold:
“When taken daily, vitamin C very slightly shortened cold duration — by 8% in adults and by 14% in children.” WebMD
It’s also a useful vitamin to help protect against scurvy, immune system deficiencies, and can even play a pivotal role in fighting cancer.
How does vitamin C help your body?
Apart from helping to fight off infections and diseases, how else does vitamin C help your body?
Let’s take a look.
· It’s an antioxidant
Your body carries out many complex processes – even when you’re fast asleep at night. As you can imagine, there are many by-products of those processes that your body needs to expel somehow.
“As the most well-known nutritional antioxidant, vitamin C is capable of reducing oxidative damages and inflammation in the pulmonary system by scavenging excess ROS and activating NF-κB pathway, respectively (Tecklenburg et al., 2007).”
Vitamin C plays a significant role in removing unwanted substances, such as reactive oxygen species (ROS), from your body. If those substances remain in your body, they can cause damage to your cells.
What exactly are reactive oxygen species?
“A type of unstable molecule that contains oxygen and that easily reacts with other molecules in a cell. A build-up of reactive oxygen species in cells may cause damage to DNA, RNA, and proteins, and may cause cell death. Reactive oxygen species are free radicals. Also called oxygen radical.” Cancer.gov
· It helps your wounds heal
When you get injured, whether it’s significant trauma from a vehicle accident or a simple paper cut, your body begins the healing process.
As you already know, vitamin C helps your body to prevent infections. Your body’s healing process would be considerably longer if you didn’t have vitamin C giving you a helping hand.
Secondly, vitamin C helps reduce inflammation caused by injuries.
In fact, vitamin C helps in all parts of the wound healing process:
“Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid (AA), is involved in all phases of wound healing. In the inflammatory phase it is required for neutrophil apoptosis and clearance. During the proliferative phase, AA contributes towards synthesis, maturation, secretion and degradation of collagen.” PubMED
· It’s good for your skin
Collagen is a protein abundant in your body, and scientists consider it the foundation of your skin’s structure.
Did you know your skin comprises around 75% to 80% collagen?
Your body naturally produces collagen, but it needs vitamin C to make that happen.
“Vitamin C is absolutely essential for synthesis of collagen. Vitamin C is the essential cofactor for the two enzymes required for collagen synthesis: prolyl hydroxylase (to stabilize the collagen molecule) and lysyl hydroxylase (to give structural strength cross-linking).” Science Direct
How to get vitamin C
Our bodies can’t make vitamin C, so everyone will need to get their vitamin C from these sources each day:
Getting vitamin C from healthy wholesome food is one of the best ways to ensure you are eating lots of nutritious foods every day!
Many foods are abundant in vitamin C, such as juicy fruits like oranges, grapefruit, strawberries and pineapples, as well as many delicious vegetables such as spinach, bell peppers, broccoli and sweet potatoes.
In fact, once you search, you’ll find that most fruits and vegetables that you already love are great sources of vitamin C. If you’re eating plenty of fresh plant-based food each day then you should already be getting a good amount of vitamin C each day.
Many people take vitamin supplements to boost their nutritional intake each day and to make sure they really are getting enough. Liposomal vitamins enable your body to absorb vitamin C quickly and are a preferable delivery method for vitamin supplements.
Vitamin C is a crucial vitamin needed by your body for several reasons. You must get enough vitamin C each day to help your body ward off infections, reduce inflammation from injuries, and keep your skin in good condition. Through a healthy diet packed full of fresh fruits and veggies you can meet your daily requirements, but you may also wish to take a vitamin C supplement to be on the safe side.