About Vitamin C
Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin. It’s also required to synthesize collagen, an important structural component of blood vessels, tendons, ligaments, and bone. Our bodies also need this essential vitamin to grow, maintain and repair tissues, including the bones and teeth.
Unlike most mammals and animals, however, humans are not able to produce Vitamin C. So… where do we get it?
Hint: A lot of food contain more Vitamin C than the friendly orange.
P.S Excessive intake of Vitamin C can be harmful.
#1 – Red and Green Hot Chili Peppers
Credit: Melissa Yakas
Chillies are an excellent source of Vitamins A, B, C and E and minerals like molybdenum, manganese, folate, potassium, thiamin, and copper. Chilli contains seven times more Vitamin C than oranges. Chillies have been included in Ayurvedic medicines and used as a tonic to ward off many diseases. Good for slimming down as they burn calories easily, they also stimulate the appetite, clear the lungs and stimulate the digestive system.
#2 – Guavas
Credit: Nailah Khalfan
Being rich in Vitamins A and C, guavas are often touted as “superfruits”. If the seeds are eaten too, you’ll also be ingesting omega-3 and omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids. Guavas contain over four times more Vitamin C than oranges and also have good levels of the dietary minerals potassium and magnesium, and a broad, low-calorie profile of essential nutrients.
#3 – Capsicum – Bell Pepper, Chili Pepper, Peppers
Credit: Jessica Lewis
The stronger the colour of the bell peppers, the higher the concentration of antioxidants. A small bell pepper could provide up to three times more of the recommended daily amount of Vitamin C, much more than any citrus food. Each colour of the bell peppers have different phytochemicals and provide different nutrients.
#4 – Fresh Herbs (Thyme and Parsley)
Credit: Brooke Lark
The same-sized portion of dried thyme contains 14 mg of Vitamin C. Vitamin C contains antioxidants, which help your body resist infection during times of stress. Sometimes called the anti-ageing vitamin, Vitamin C produces collagen important for the formation of bones, teeth, ligaments, tendons and maintains the youthful appearance of skin.
If you have a weakened immune system or digestive problems, or don’t have an appetite, you could try parsley. Rich in Vitamins A and C, parsley is an excellent source of iron, calcium, magnesium, antioxidants, and chlorophyll. Parsley is also richer in Vitamin C than oranges.
#5 – Dark, Leafy Greens
Credit: Joanna Kosinska
These are a rich source of Vitamins C, K, E, and B, as well as iron, calcium, and fibre, which are essential for good health. Recent studies have shown that Vitamin K plays an important role in preventing osteoporosis, arthritis, diabetes, and atherosclerosis. Vitamin E has been shown to prevent skin cancer.
#6 – Broccoli
Credit: Joanna Kosinska
Broccoli contains twice the amount of Vitamin C compared to an orange and has almost as much calcium as a glass of milk. It contains high levels of both calcium and Vitamin K, which are both important for bone health, prevention of osteoporosis. Thanks to the glucoraphanin it contains, it also helps to detoxify and repair the skin.
#7 – Kiwis
Kiwis contain great nutritional value. They are rich in many Vitamins, flavonoids and minerals. In particular, they contain a high amount of Vitamin C (again, more than oranges), as much potassium as bananas and a good amount of beta-carotene. Kiwis are also great for people with poor digestion, thanks to their high-fibre content and unique mucilage, making for a gentle and effective laxative.
#8 – Papayas
Papayas are very low in saturated fats, cholesterol, sodium, and rich in Vitamin A. It is highly rich in Vitamin C, Enzymes and Potassium, both of which are needed for a healthy immune system. Papayas may, therefore, be a healthy fruit choice for preventing illnesses such as recurrent ear infections, colds and cases of flu.
#9 – Oranges
Credit: Jessica Lewis
Juicy, sweet and renowned for high concentrations of Vitamin C, oranges make a perfect snack or a zesty tang to many recipes. However, eat these in moderation! Too many oranges can cause dryness in the mouth and sore throats. Children that eat too many oranges are likely to suffer from glossitis, periodontitis, pharyngitis, etc.
#10 – Strawberries
Credit: Artur Rutkowski
Strawberries are healthy and nutritious for a number of reasons, including the fact that they are rich in Vitamin C. Just one cup of whole strawberries contains 82 mg of Vitamin C, which is significantly more than other fruits. This fruit also contains 3 grams of dietary fibre as well as 20 mg of calcium and 239 mg of potassium per full cup.