5 Foods To Increase Your Vitamin C Intake
In modern life, many of us are deficient in nutrients and vitamins, without even realising it. A lot of people assume that we can get most of our daily recommended vitamin allowances through our diet and, whilst this is the case in some aspects, often our diets aren’t enough to provide us with everything we need. This can lead to health concerns such as fatigue, anaemia, bone loss, muscle cramps and even links to chronic illnesses or disease.
Vitamin C is an essential vitamin, but your body can’t produce it naturally. This means that vitamin C needs to be consumed as part of your daily diet. Vitamin C has many roles and health benefits, whilst also being known as a powerful antioxidant and having positive impacts on your skin health and immune function. With many adults not getting anywhere near enough vitamin C to support their natural bodily function, here are 5 foods you can eat to increase your vitamin C intake
What Benefits Does Vitamin C Have?
Vitamin C is essential for our overall health and wellness, with it benefitting particular health conditions. Vitamin C is especially recommended to boost immune health, as it can support your immune system’s cellular function.
Ensuring that you consume the recommended daily vitamin C allowance may also help to protect your body against illness and disease and, although studies show that regular vitamin C intake likely won’t protect you from catching a common cold, it can drastically reduce the severity or duration of cold symptoms. Vitamin C can also help to manage and maintain high blood pressure, protect against iron deficiency and protect your memory.
One single red pepper contains 169% of your daily recommended intake of vitamin C. Red peppers are one of the best natural sources of the vitamin and has one of the highest percentages. Consuming just a few pieces of red pepper per day, whether cut up in a salad, sliced and enjoyed with hummus or a fresh yoghurt dip or grilled with pasta is enough to help you increase your vitamin C intake for the day.
Oranges are one of the most well-known sources of vitamin C and are one of the easiest ways you can boost your intake. A single, medium orange contains around 70 milligrams of vitamin C, with grapefruits and lemons also being rich in vitamin C. You can eat the fruit itself, infuse water with natural fruit juice, cook with lemons and lime or juice together with other fruits and veg to make a smoothie or juice. It’s important to steer clear of fruit juices that you can buy in a carton, as they generally contain large amounts of sugar.
Green Leafy Vegetables
Green and leafy vegetables such as brussel sprouts, broccoli, cabbage, kale and spinach all have naturally high levels of vitamin C, but it’s important to keep an eye on the way you cook them. Broccoli, for example, contains around 40 milligrams of vitamin C, but if it is boiled for a prolonged period of time, this could cause a lot of the goodness to dissipate. Enjoy raw, juiced or lightly steamed or boiled.
When compared gram to gram, fresh herbs such as thyme and parsley, have around three times more vitamin C than oranges and around 28g of fresh herbs contain around 45mg of vitamin C – around 50% of your daily recommended intake. Even just adding a tsp or two of fresh herbs to your dinner can boost your vitamin C intake, helping to strengthen your immune system and fight against infections.
Around 150g of strawberries contain around 89mg of your daily vitamin C intake – just 1mg short of your recommended daily intake. Strawberries contain a great mixture of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, manganese, folate, flavonoids and other powerful antioxidants. Studies have shown that, because of their high antioxidant content, strawberries can help protect against diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cholesterol.
Vitamin C is absolutely vital to your immune system and is a huge contributor to many different factors on your health and body. Not getting enough vitamin C can have hugely negative effects on your health and can affect you in a number of different ways. Although citrus fruits could be one of the most popular and well-known sources of vitamin C, there are many different foods that contain vitamin C that you can enjoy as part of your daily diet. If you don’t think you’re consuming enough vitamin c, then you can always add a vitamin C tablet or supplement to your daily diet.
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