How are you all? I am back with another article on the vitamins needed by the body. This time I am here to discuss the importance of Vitamin C and the problems caused due to its deficiency.
Vitamin C is one of my favourite vitamin. Sounds funny, right?? How can someone have a favourite vitamin?? Well this is because it is found in all citrus things and I love citrus fruits. Anything that is sour can qualify to be my favourite, I am such a huge fan of khatta stuff be it tamarind or amla (they are also sources of vitamin C).
So that is my story. Now let me move on.
Roles played by Vitamin C in the human body
- Vitamin C is needed for the growth and repair of the body tissues.
- It helps form an important protein used to make skin, tendons, ligaments, and blood vessels
- Vitamin C is one of many antioxidants. Antioxidants help in blocking some of the damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals are known to accelerate aging and also play a role in cancer, heart disease and arthritis.
- It helps in the absorption of iron in the body.
- It also seems to expand blood vessels and constricted arteries, as a result helping to lower blood pressure.
- It is needed to maintain brain health too by producing certain neuro-transmitters.
- Vitamin C is needed for eye health too.
- It heals wounds and helps in forming scar tissue (do you remember your childhood days when you used to fall and hurt your knee. Vitamin C has played a major role in healing those wounds)
- It repairs and maintains cartilage, bones, and teeth
Hmmm. So, now you know how important vitamin–C is for our body!! What happens when there is deficiency of Vitamin C in the body? The deficiency disease is called ‘Scurvy’. It now uncommon though.
You would probably feel the following that are a tell-tale signs of the deficiency of the vitamin:
Symptoms of Vitamin C Deficiency
- Fatigue- you might get tired easily and have reduced energy levels.
- Sudden weight loss
- Irritability and mood changes like short temper
- Tooth and gum trouble like deterioration of gums.
- Joint and muscular pain
- Getting bruised easily
- Dry skin and hair is a sign of lack of the vitamin.
- Low immunity and inability to fight infections.
How to cure the deficiency?
If you are diagnosed with a deficiency of the vitamin you can be treated by taking supplements and eating food rich in vitamin C. It is the best to consult your doctor and do things accordingly.
Foods rich in Vitamin C
Now our bodies cannot synthesize vitamin C on their own, neither can they store the vitamin. So naturally we need to rely on food sources to get our daily dosage.
Fruits and vegetables mentioned below are a really good source of the vitamin:
Strawberries, lime, sweet lime, orange, papaya, pineapple, mango, guava, amla, radish leaves, fenugreek leaves (methi), coriander, cabbage, cauliflower, capsicum, green chillies, cauliflower and bitter gourd.
So, if you are having a variety of fruits and vegetables in your daily diet you need not worry about your Vitamin C intake. Same old health sermon for all of you- have a wholesome diet. It may sound boring but it is very important to ward off vitamin deficiencies.
P.S – Read about Vitamin B12 here and Vitamin D here and here.