WHAT IS VITAMIN C?
Vitamin C, also known technically as L-ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin that plays an important part in our overall health. This vitamin can be found as a dietary supplement as well as naturally occurring in some foods and fortified into others. It’s interesting to note that humans, unlike many other species, are unable to synthesise vitamin C internally, making it a crucial component of our diet. It is impossible to undervalue the importance of vitamin C, which serves a variety of important roles in the body.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF VITAMIN C?
Vitamin C is more than just your standard vitamin; it’s a health food packed with advantages that can improve your wellbeing in several ways. Let’s examine a few of the outstanding benefits that vitamin C provides:
- Decreases the risk of chronic illnesses: Strong antioxidants like vitamin C can help your body’s defence mechanisms. Your cells are shielded from the damaging effects of free radicals by antioxidants, which are like the superheroes of the nutritional world. Free radical buildup can result in oxidative stress, a condition associated with many chronic diseases. According to studies, boosting your vitamin C consumption can increase the number of antioxidants in your blood by up to 30%, which can help your body fight inflammation and lower your chance of developing chronic diseases.
- May help in blood pressure management: A sizable segment of the population suffers from high blood pressure, which is a substantial risk factor for heart disease, the leading cause of death worldwide. According to research, vitamin C may help to decrease blood pressure. Studies have demonstrated that vitamin C supplementation can lower blood pressure by relaxing blood arteries. Vitamin C supplementation has shown beneficial effects on systolic and diastolic blood pressure in both healthy people and people with high blood pressure.
- May lower uric acid levels and prevent gout attacks: Gout, a severe form of arthritis, can be relieved by keeping uric acid levels in the blood at ideal levels. In the fight against gout, vitamin C has become a possible ally. According to studies, consuming more vitamin C helps lower blood uric acid levels, hence protecting against gout attacks. For instance, people who consumed more vitamin C had considerably lower levels of uric acid, and those who took vitamin C supplements had a 44% decreased risk of getting gout.
These exceptional vitamin C advantages highlight how crucial it is for preserving top health. Despite the numerous health claims and advantages, it is important to speak with a doctor or physician before consuming Vitamin C supplements so they can examine you and, if necessary, prescribe you Vitamin A medication. Your body may suffer negative consequences if you do it alone.
HOW DOES VITAMIN C WORK IN HUMAN BODY?
Whether it enters our bodies through food or supplements, vitamin C sets out on an exciting trip and becomes essential to a number of physiological functions. This journey starts in the small intestine, a vital passageway where vitamin C begins to change into a biological powerhouse. Being water-soluble, vitamin C has the special ability to dissolve easily in water. This quality guarantees that it will easily absorb into our bodies. Think of it as a little, thirsty traveller that is anxious to discover its destination.
When vitamin C enters our small intestine, it doesn’t stay the same; instead, it changes in our liver. Here, it experiences an amazing transition and takes on the identity of ascorbic acid, which is its active form. Ascorbic acid is the unsung hero who fulfils many important supporting jobs for vitamin C in our bodies. Ascorbic acid goes on a spectacular journey through our bloodstream with its newly discovered identity. Ascorbic acid reaches its destinations like a well-composed symphony nearing its finale. It encounters, strategically positioned retinoic acid receptors (RARs) in a variety of organs. Like keyholes, these receptors are designed to unlock specific biological processes in our bodies.
The way ascorbic acid interacts with these RARs resembles a precise molecular ballet. It has an impact on how many biological processes are regulated and even has control over how our genes express themselves. In essence, vitamin C in the form of ascorbic acid serves as a conductor, coordinating the smooth operation of the body’s critical functions.
HOW MUCH VITAMIN C CAN A PERSON TAKE?
For optimum health, it’s crucial to figure out how much vitamin C to include in your diet each day. Fortunately, recommendations made by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) include important details on suggested vitamin C dietary amounts. These recommendations cover both dietary sources and supplements, making sure that your nutritional needs are fully addressed.
The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA), which considers the typical daily consumption of nutrients required by healthy persons, is one of these recommendations. The RDA seeks to provide enough nutrients for 97-98% of the population. The RDAs for vitamin C for various life phases are listed below:
- Kids (1–3 years): 15 mg
- Adolescents (9–13 years): 45 mg
- Teens (14–18 years): 65–75 mg
- Adult women (aged 19 and older): 75 mg
- Adult men (aged 19 and older): 90 mg
- Pregnant women (aged 19 and older): 85 mg
- Breastfeeding women (aged 19 and older): 120 mg
It’s crucial to keep in mind that while these recommendations offer helpful information about the recommended levels of vitamin C intake for the population, individual dietary needs can change depending on your lifestyle, overall health, and any underlying medical issues. Therefore, seeking advice from a certified nutritionist or a member of the medical community is always a prudent decision.
WHAT ARE THE VARIATIONS OF VITAMIN C?
Vitamin C is also available as:
- Vitamin C Ascorbic Acid
- Vitamin C Ascorbic Acid (Liposomal) Powder
- Vitamin C Ascorbic Acid DC 97%
- Vitamin C Ascorbic Acid European
- Vitamin C Ascorbyl Palmitate (~42% Ascorbate)
- Vitamin C Calcium Ascorbate Dihydrate (~82% Ascorbate)
- Vitamin C Magnesium Ascorbate (~83% Ascorbate)
- Vitamin C Potassium Ascorbate (~82% Ascorbate)
- Vitamin C Sodium Ascorbate (~88% Ascorbate)
- Vitamin C Zinc Ascorbate (~81% Ascorbate)
- Vitamin C Calcium Ascorbate Dihydrate (~82% Ascorbate)
Vitamin C is commonly available in:
- Vitamin C tablets
- Vitamin C capsules
- Vitamin C powder
- Vitamin C chewable tablets
- Vitamin C effervescent tablets
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