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Vitamin C - Ascorbic Acid

Found in:

Red/Yellow/Green Peppers, Pineapples, Strawberries, Oranges, Parsley, Celery, Citrus, Broccoli, Kiwis, Beet Greens, Chard, Collard, Kale, Mustard, Turnip, Euro Greens, Country Greens, Spinach, Potatoes, Grapefruit, Guava, Lemons, Mangos, Tomatoes, Black currants, Brussels sprouts, Cabbage Peppers, Papayas, Rose Hips, Tangerines, Watercress, Apple skin, etc.

What is known to be good for:

  • Collagen formation: healthy skin; structural materials in bones; and teeth and capillaries.
  • Immune function: helps the white blood cells combat infection; wound healing; and cancer-fighting.
  • Neutralizing potentially damaging free radicals - Vitamin C is an antioxindant.
  • Absorption of iron from plant (non-animal) sources.

Other functions of Vitamin C:

  • Potential protection against heart disease;
  • May prevent allergies;
  • May reduce symptoms of arthritis, skin ulcers, allergic reactions, possible relief of herpes infections of eyes and genitals;
  • May prevent periodontal disease;
  • May reduce toxic effect of alcohol and drugs;
  • May promote healing of bed sores;
  • May retard aging;
  • May improve male fertility.

Lack of Vitamin C can:

Result in poor wound healing; dry skin; broken thread veins; scalp dryness; irritability; easy bruising; frequent infections; prolonged colds; weak muscles; fatigue; loss of teeth; bleeding gums; depression; bleeding beneath the skin; swollen or painful joints; nosebleeds; anemia: tired; and paleness.

Excess of Vitamin C can:

Vitamin C in excess has been reported to result in gastrointestinal disturbances, uricosuria, excessive absorption of iron, and impaired bactericidal activity of the leukocyte. Too much vitamin C may lead to increased catabolism and excretion of the vitamin C in the urine, and it can interfere with medical tests such as Glycosuria in Diabetic Patients.

Do you know where you find Vitamin C in your body?

Concentrations of Vitamin C are found in the retina and other eye tissues, the adrenal and pituitary glands, brain, pancreas, kidney, liver and spleen. It is also present in other tissues such as the testes, ovaries, lungs, platelets, leukocytes, erythrocytes, plasma, etc.

Storage and manipulation of suppliers of Vitamin C:

Vitamin C concentration in fruits and vegetables varies with the conditions such as: Location (geography and climate), freshness, and degree of maturation. Young green leafy vegetables contain more concentration of the Vitamin C than the mature leaf; also the more chopped, cooked and stored, the lower the concentration of vitamin C.

Absorption, Storage and Excretion

Absorption of vitamin C occurs in the jejunum.

Source: HEINZ HANDBOOK Of Nutrition, 9th EDITION, Edited by David L. Yeung, Ph.D. and Idamarie Laquatra, Ph.D., R.D.

Adapted by Editorial Staff, November 2006
Last update, August 2008


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