Description of Vitamin C
Vitamin C is water-soluble, that is, it is soluble in water. Although most mammals can synthesize it, the human body has lost the ability to do so throughout evolution. Therefore, it must be obtained daily from food.
Vitamin C is absorbed mainly in the small intestine and in much smaller amounts in the mouth and stomach and is excreted in the urine.
In the body, it is found mainly in the eye lens, white blood cells, pituitary gland, adrenal glands and brain.
Vitamin C is involved in hundreds of processes in the body. One of its main functions is to help the body produce collagen, a protein essential for the formation of connective tissue in the skin, ligaments, and bones.
It also helps maintain immune function, activates wound healing, helps form red blood cells and increases iron absorption.
Another important function of vitamin C is its antioxidant effect, which protects cells from free radical damage.
Dietary sources of vitamin C
Raw and colored fruits and vegetables contain the highest amount of vitamin C: red bell pepper, orange, lemon, grapefruit, melon, raspberry, strawberry, broccoli, tomato, etc.
In general, consumption of at least 5 servings of fresh fruits and vegetables will more than satisfy the recommended nutritional intake of vitamin C.
Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin essential to our health.
Since it cannot be stored in the body, it must be provided regularly through the diet.
Known for its “anti-fatigue” action, vitamin C has many other virtues. Let’s balance its benefits, especially for the elderly, to ensure good physical condition and good health.
1- Strengthens the immune system
Vitamin C supports the proper functioning of the immune system. So it is not surprising that many people use it to prevent or treat colds.
In addition, it strengthens the defenses by helping to fight many other bacterial and viral infections.
2- It is a powerful antioxidant
Vitamin C has many antioxidant properties and helps neutralize the action of free radicals by protecting the body from the damage they can cause. This helps extend the life of the cells, making them more resistant.
3- Contributes to the healing of wounds and fractures
By supporting the development of collagen production, vitamin C contributes to the healing of wounds and fractures by acting as a healing agent.
In addition, it supports the development and proper functioning of many structures in the human body such as bones, tendons, ligaments, blood vessels, teeth, skin and other organs.
4- Maintains healthy blood vessels
Vitamin C promotes the dilation of blood vessels by preventing their narrowing and keeping them healthy.
It also plays a key role in protecting the heart, acting as a preventive agent against heart disease, high cholesterol and high blood pressure.
5- Improves mood
Several studies show a relationship between increased vitamin C intake and decreased mood disorders. This vitamin is known to improve mood and reduce stress and anxiety.
In addition to influencing personal mood, vitamin C also contributes to the proper functioning of the brain.
6- Promotes weight loss
Eating foods rich in vitamin C, as well as vitamin C supplements, can be very helpful for those who want to lose weight.
It plays a key role in controlling blood sugar levels and promotes fat oxidation during exercise.
In fact, people with a vitamin C deficiency have more difficulty losing fat than those who take the right amounts of this vitamin.
7- Promotes healthy skin, hair and nails
Vitamin C intake contributes to the development and repair of body tissues and has many benefits in terms of hair, skin and nail beauty!
Vitamin C aids in skin elasticity, which means it prevents the appearance of stretch marks, promotes hair growth and strength, and maintains the integrity of the nails.
8- Helps to slow down the aging process
Its antioxidant properties and its important role in collagen synthesis make vitamin C an important ingredient in the anti-aging process, often used in supplements and skin care products.
The consumption of vitamin C helps fight the damage caused by toxins in our daily lives and delays the effects of free radicals in our body by slowing down the aging process of cells and preventing wrinkles and dryness of the skin.
Vitamin C consumption
The vitamin C needs of the elderly are significantly higher than those of other populations.
An elderly person’s consumption should vary from 120 to 130 mg per day. To help you consume vitamin C regularly, here are some food ideas: peppers, cabbage, watercress, parsley, sorrel, not to mention fruit and citrus.
Vitamin C is a well-known remedy for the prevention and treatment of colds.
Taking this vitamin to prevent and treat colds has been a hot topic for over 60 years.
While some scientists are advancing the effectiveness of this compound, others suggest that it may not be effective in preventing this seasonal disease.
Therefore, researchers have tried to verify whether this molecule has real efficacy in the duration and severity of the cold, when used in prevention, treatment or after the onset of symptoms.
This meta-analysis reported that most of the trials that showed positive results were those that used high doses of this compound in more than 4 g per day.
At an average dose of 8 g per day taken at the onset of symptoms, vitamin C may have reduced the severity and duration of the cold by playing a role in respiratory defense mechanisms.
Benefits and Virtues of Vitamin C
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps fight oxidative stress, preserving cells from free radicals and therefore from premature aging.
It acts in synergy with vitamin E, beta-carotene, elselenium and zinc, which enhances its effects on free radicals.
In addition, this antioxidant action allows it to contribute to the prevention of cardiovascular diseases, certain cancers and neurodegenerative diseases.
Vitamin C is essential for strengthening the immune system at half-mast. That is why it is prescribed for cure at the arrival of the cold season, to protect against environmental viruses. It is particularly involved in the renewal and functioning of white blood cells.
By contributing to the synthesis of collagen, the most abundant protein in our body that helps structure the skin, tendons, cartilage and ligaments, it is essential for the good health and strength of the human body.
A good collagen synthesis prevents the formation of atherosclerotic plaques (responsible for heart disease) and fragile blood vessels (which can cause internal bleeding).
This vitamin also increases the assimilation of iron, especially iron of vegetable origin. Therefore, it is very useful in the fight against anemia, especially in vegetarians who are very prone to it.
Vitamin C deficiency
Deficiency of this vitamin is now very rare. When mild, it can result in severe fatigue and loss of appetite.
When the daily intake is less than 10 mg per day for 3 or 4 months, it can cause scurvy, an extremely serious disease that causes edema, loosening of teeth and bleeding leading to death without immediate treatment.
Scurvy decimated a large number of sailors during the Renaissance and continued to rage until the 19th century.
Although it was thought that it had been completely eradicated from Europe, in recent years some cases have been recorded.
One of them was a patient suffering from anorexic-type eating disorders, the others had an extremely unbalanced diet without fruits and vegetables.