Foods rich in Vitamin C

Foods rich in Vitamin C

When we talk about Vitamin C, the first thing that comes to mind is an orange, right? Most people still believe that it is a food that is rich in vitamin C. However, the truth is that there are others who have a higher vitamin C content, some of them you may not even know…

Vitamin C is an essential element for life. It is a water soluble vitamin, that is, its excess can be excreted through the urine instead of being stored in the body. Even though it can remain for weeks in the body, it is advisable to take it daily.

Vitamin C plays an important role in human health, since it is involved in many physiological processes and reactions. Moreover, it acts as a cofactor in some of them. It has an antioxidant effect, reducing the oxidative damage to the cells that is caused by the free radicals. Find out all you need to know about vitamin C.

Scurvy is a disease or pathology triggered by a vitamin C deficiency. Some of its symptoms are: anemia, weakness, tiredness or edema.

Foods rich in Vitamin C

Citrus fruits are a source of vitamin C, as well as having other important properties

Recommended Daily Amount of Vitamin C

When it comes to measuring the necessary amount of this vitamin, we have to check the recommendations of the corresponding organization:

According to the Regulation (EU) 1169/2011 of the 25th of October 2011, the NRV (Nutrient Reference Value) of Vitamin C in adults is 80mg daily

Nevertheless, I believe that this dose may vary in the case of active people, like sportspeople and/or athletes. Mainly because they need more energy due to demanding physical activities. They will require a higher supply than what it is actually advised in order to prevent important pathologies (risk of heart attack, certain types of cancer…)

In some studies, the intake of vitamin C before and after intense physical exercise can reduce the post-workout muscle soreness, the DOMS, as well as some muscle damage markers. At the same time, there are some people who could also benefit from a daily intake of vitamin C such as vegetarians, athletes and smokers, as well as passive smokers.

Athletes and Vitamin C

On the other hand, we cannot deny the protective role of vitamin C in order to reduce the oxidative stress in athletes, which has been proven in different studies

How much Vitamin C does an Orange have?

Contrary to popular belief, orange is not a synonym of the highest supply of vitamin C. Specifically, on average, eating an orange will provide us with 53mg of vitamin C.

By the way, another myth is that orange cures colds, which is false. In any case, it can be useful to relieve the symptoms, while consuming vitamin C regularly can help us “prevent” catching a cold.

What are the best Food sources of Vitamin C?

Guava

This tropical fruit is at the top of the ranking of best vitamin C sources. On average, a single Guava can provide almost 125mg. It has a great fiber content, which helps us increase our feeling of satiety. Another property is that it balances the sodium and potassium levels in the body, contributing to regulate the blood pressure. It is also rich in folic acid, magnesium, potassium and vitamin A.

Guava and its vitamin C contentEven if you did not know about this fruit before, now you can try to find it in the market

Pepper

The pepper family has high concentrations of vitamin C, around 120mg per 100g. Peppers, especially spicy ones, contain Capsaicin which is a natural chemical substance that: stimulates the metabolism, strengthens the immune system, lowers the cholesterol, has anti-inflammatory effects or contributes to fat loss.
They are also excellent sources of vitamin A, potassium, folic acid and fiber. You can eat them raw in a salad or baked, or as a side dish with a protein meal.

Vitamin C in peppers

There is a wide range of pepper, which provide a good supply of vitamin C

Kale

It is a green leaf vegetable that provides 120mg per 100g. It has been used for cooking for generations and it is one of those foods with a higher concentration of nutrients (nutritional density per less amount of food). It also has good amounts regarding the daily recommended dose of vitamin A, vitamin K, manganese, calcium, copper, potassium, magnesium, vitamin B1, B2 and B6, iron and phosphorus. It provides fiber and even 3g of protein per 100g. It is full of antioxidants, like vitamin C itself, flavonoids such as quercetin and polyphenols. It produces a natural anti-inflammatory effects. Nowadays, since it has become really trendy, we can enjoy this vegetable in a smoothie.

Kale and vitamin C

Kale is frequently used to cook dishes with legumes, which results in a combination with an important nutritional supply

Kiwi

Even though it is native to New Zealand, kiwi is quite familiar in our diet. When it comes to its vitamin C supply, it is higher than that of orange, with 90mg per 100g on average. This delicious and refreshing fruit is present in almost every home, since its taste is also quite pleasant. It contains actinidain, which are a type of digestive enzymes that support the digestion, specifically that of protein, helping to relieve stomach problems. It is a great antioxidant food thanks to its high supply of vitamin C. It also strengthens the immune system while protecting the DNA structure or the skin thanks to its vitamin E content. Moreover, its fiber supply helps the body to excrete toxins and improves the intestinal transit.

Kiwi ice creams and vitamin C

We usually tend to judge a product due to its aspect. In this case, it is almost impossible to resist eating a kiwi ice cream!

Broccoli

Broccoli is a food that is widely consumed in weight loss diets due to its satiating properties, as well as its important nutritional supply. It belongs to the cruciferae genus, like cauliflower, even though broccoli provides around 90mg per 100g of vitamin C, while cauliflower only provides half that amount.
It also provides a wide range of micronutrients: vitamin K, chromium, folate, Pantothenic acid, phosphorus, manganese, choline, vitamin B2, vitamin A, potassium, copper, vitamin B1, magnesium, zinc, iron, calcium, selenium, vitamin B3… These are some strong reasons why we should include broccoli in our daily diet.

Broccoli and vitamin C

No, that’s not a bonsai either, rather, it is an incredible vegetable with a high supply of nutrients

Citrus Fruits

Here, we can include oranges along with lemon, lime, grapefruit or tangerine. On average, 100g of these fruits will provide around 60-70mg of vitamin C. This type of fruits are quite eye-catching due to their bright colors. Moreover, they tend to be used to make juices or seasonings, instead of eating the whole fruit to obtain all its nutritional properties: group B vitamins, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium and copper, as well as a fiber supply. They produce antioxidant effects (they contain flavonoids, such as hesperidin and apigenin) and anti-inflammatories, they improve the digestive system, as well as being low in calories, which is perfect for weight-loss diets. Citrus fruits are high in citrate, which is necessary to prevent kidney stones.

Citrus fruits and vitamin C

It is always advisable to eat the whole fruit, including the pulp. It is better to liquefy the fruit rather than making juice, since they provide a higher density of micronutrients

Strawberry

This sweet fruit provides around 60mg per 100g of vitamin C. This means that, on average, a strawberry will have around 7mg of vitamin C. We can also include raspberries and pomegranates in this group. It is a clear example of how easy it is to add fruits to our diet every day. It is quite versatile, you can either use it to add some flavor to a post-workout protein shake. However, you can really eat it at any time of the day to keep a nutrient balance. Strawberries have an excellent antioxidant content, they provide protection to preserve mainly our skin and health since it contains ellagic acid. This is a type of polyphenol that protects the fruit against the ultraviolet rays. It also has lutein, which is involved in the maintenance of the ocular system.

Basket with strawberries

How many strawberries would you eat right now?

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About Javier Colomer
Javier Colomer
Under the motto “Knowledge Makes me Stronger”, Javier Colomer clearly expresses his intentions to share his knowledge and experience within the world of Fitness. His BPT training system is proof of this.
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