Vitamin C also called as ascorbic acid is the most important of vitamins. It is a non-essential nutrient in many species (which means they can synthesize it in within themselves). However humans and few other animals cannot synthesize it and require regular dietary intake of this vitamin.
As said earlier it is the most important of vitamins and helps the body in different ways like prevention of oxidative stress (as an antioxidant) and by increasing the overall immunity of the body. It is also essential for proper synthesis of several enzymes within the body. It aids in collagen synthesis and also in wound healing.
Vitamin C – Ascorbic Acid Sources
Most of the fresh fruits and vegetables have vitamin C, however some of the richest sources of vitamin C are sea buckthorn, indian gooseberries, oranges, guava, chillies, black currant, oranges and so on.
Biological Functions of Vitamin C
Vitamin c is required by the body on an every day basis. There are numerous biological functions related to vitamin C, the most important biological functions of Vitamin C are:
- Its most important function is collagen synthesis
- Acting as an antioxidant
- Improves immunity
- Acting as a natural anti-hystamine
- Being a co-factor in synthesis of many enzymes
Vitamin C – Deficiency
Vitamin C deficiency will lead to Scurvy, the reason for that is without vitamin C the synthesized collagen will be insufficient and unstable. A deficiency of this vitamin will also increase the risk of cancer and cardio-vascular diseases. It also results in poor immunity and recovery from stress.
Vitamin C – Requirements and supplements
Daily requirement of Vitamin C for a healthy body is around 90 mg/day. The upper limit is set at 2 g/day(2,000 mg). Vitamin c when consumed above 2g/day might result in diarrhea. However mild overdosages don’t have a significant effect as they will be excreted through urine. We always recommend natural sources of nutrients. However if you don’t have access to fresh vegetables and fruits and other sources rich in vitamin C, then you can go for a supplement. However read more about the risks involved using a supplement before opting for supplements.