Almost everyone has heard of vitamin C and knows how important it is for our health, but do you know why? Hearing about all the brilliant benefits of vitamin C may have you opting for a glass of OJ more often or scouring the beauty isle for vitamin-C enriched skin goodies!
Are you ready to see what vitamin C can do for you? Discover some of the best benefits vitamin C has to offer in this handy guide.
As you will discover, this useful vitamin is very important for a variety of body functions, from supporting our immune system to helping to reduce the appearance of those fine lines and wrinkles and so much more!
Let’s find out what vitamin C is good for!
Need a boost? Healthy plant sugars meet vitamin C goodness with this vitamin C-rich ice lolly to keep you energised in more ways than one!
When your body is very deficient in vitamin C, you are at high risk for scurvy. Depression, personality changes, listlessness and general malaise are some of the symptoms of scurvy, making vitamin C vital for normal mental health.Vitamin C also helps our body cells communicate with each other and contributes to the synthesis of some hormones (noradrenaline and adrenaline).2 These hormones help to regulate your mood and ability to concentrate. They also work with other hormones to help the body respond to exercise and stress.3
Vitamin C plays a big part in keeping our cartilage and bones strong by helping our bodies to make collagen. Collagen is the most abundant protein in our bodies and acts as a scaffold to provide structure and strength. About 90% of the matrix proteins in our bones are collagen, so it makes sense that it is good for our bones and cartilage.Some research suggests that higher vitamin C intake appears to be associated with higher bone mass density and lower bone loss. Very high vitamin C levels have also been seen to help protect against hip and other bone fractures.6 Another micronutrient needed for strong and healthy bones is calcium, so try this calcium and vitamin C recipe for a double whammy of bone support.
If you feel like your skin needs a boost – vitamin C could help! Do you ever wonder why we get those fine lines and wrinkles as we age? The decline in elasticity and ‘plumpness’ in our skin is due, for the most part, to our natural collagen levels decreasing as we age.There are two main options in using vitamin C to help your skin:
Feeling tired and fatigued sometimes is normal – especially if you lead a busy lifestyle or exercise a lot. However, if you’re feeling exhausted all the time is a sure sign that your body is struggling to convert the energy you give it into action. If you are fuelling your body with the food and drink it needs and still feeling the fatigue, it could mean that your body is lacking in certain micronutrients, like vitamin C.Weakness and fatigue are among the symptoms of a vitamin C deficiency, so it’s important to make sure you’re getting enough. A cause and effect relationship has been established between the intake of adequate levels of vitamin C and reduced tiredness and fatigue.8
Not only does vitamin C do a good job on its own, it can help other micronutrients do their job too! Vitamin C helps our bodies to absorb iron – one of the most important minerals for health. Iron is an important component of haemoglobin, which is found in our red blood cells and carries oxygen from our lungs to the rest of our bodies.
When we don’t consume enough iron - or it isn’t being absorbed properly in our bodies – it can have detrimental effects on our health. So it's important to not let your iron go to waste – make sure you have enough vitamin C for your body to put it to good use.
Now we’ve covered the function of vitamin c in our bodies and all its wonderful benefit health, let’s find out how much you need to stay healthy.
If you consume a healthy balanced diet with plenty of fresh fruit and veg, you will probably be getting enough vitamin C. However, our bodies cannot make or store vitamin C. Of you don’t hit your 5-a-day target as much as you’d like, you may need to reconsider your diet or start taking a supplement. Try tracking your food for a few days to see if you’re hitting the recommended vitamin C targets below:
Please consult a medical professional if you think you or a member of your family may be experiencing vitamin C deficiency. If untreated it can cause a multitude of health problems.
Last updated: 7 July 2020