Health Benefits Of Vitamin C

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

To help your body work more efficiently, you will find the Vitamin C is a necessity. Vitamin C is also known as ascorbic acid and it is a very popular vitamin, but many people do not really know much about it.
Like Vitamin B, Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin. Hence, if it is not used by your body, it gets eliminated via urination.
 Usually, both vitamins B and C are stored in the liver. This is where your body draws on this vitamin for support of its functions.

Research showed that humans were once able to create their own Vitamin C naturally. Somehow, this ability was lost over the generations. Certain animals are known to still possess this natural functional ability. However, the primates and the guinea pigs have also lost their ability. This is why research studies, including those that involve Vitamin C, are often conducted on guinea pigs based on this similarity to the humans.

Vitamin C helps in collagen production. Collagen is a substance found in various parts of your body. They can be found in your connective tissues, smooth muscle cells, skeletal cells, and cartilage. Vitamin C plays a critical part in the process of hydroxylation to amino acids. With this process of adding hydrogen and oxygen, procollagen is produced. This process happens when your body requires it. Vitamin C also helps to prevent Vitamins A and E from oxidizing as well.

A deficiency in Vitamin C can cause you to develop scurvy. Scurvy is not a very common condition except in alcoholics. The main reason why it inflicts alcoholics especially is because alcoholics tend not to consume much of anything else other than their drinks. Scurvy comes with symptoms like bleeding gums, easy bruising, slow healing of wounds, joint pain, and the reduction of muscle tone.

It is important that you have a regular diet that gives you adequate Vitamin C. For this, you need to consume citrus fruits, such as limes, grapefruits, oranges, and limes. Other food sources of Vitamin C can be found in potatoes, tomatoes, and green peppers.

Health experts recommend a daily allowance of somewhere in the range of 60 to 90mg of Vitamin C. On the average, Americans consume about 72mg daily of Vitamin C.

Luckily, scurvy can be prevented with just 5 to 7mg of Vitamin C and you can take as much as 2000mg daily without any ill side effects. Any Vitamin C over this dosage will not cause permanent problems other than diarrhea.

Many people believe in the myth that the more Vitamin C that you take, the longer that you will live. However, a study by the Mayo Clinic showed that the reverse may be true. If you find it hard to get Vitamin C from natural food sources, then you can always turn to Vitamin C supplements. These will help ensure that you take the recommended daily allowance.


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