Food & Nutrition

How Much Vitamin C Should i Take

How Much Vitamin C Should i Take

It seems that the body can accumulate a certain amount of vitamin C, as it has been seen that the signs of deficiency appear only after 4 months of complete elimination from the diet. To stay healthy, the World Health Organization gives precise values ​​of vitamin C needed by our body: from 35 to 60 milligrams of vitamin C daily. In particular, up to 35 milligrams are essential for infants; 40 for children; 65 for the elderly, and up to 85 milligrams for breastfeeding women. The athlete has a higher need for vitamin C (but also for vitamin E and antioxidants in general). It consumes 10 to 40 times more oxygen than a person who leads a sedentary life, producing more free radicals. Here we will give a complete guide about how much vitamin c should I take?

How Much Vitamin C Should I Take

Therefore, our requirement is 60-100 mg per day. Since the human body cannot synthesize vitamin C, it is necessary to take it from the outside. The recommended quantity is easily reached with a diet rich in fresh and raw fruit and vegetables: to give some examples, in orange, there are, on average, 51 mg of ascorbic acid in 100 grams, in red peppers 172 in 100 grams, and cauliflower 65 in 100 grams.

Unfortunately, however, the statistics show a vitamin C deficiency in many people. Blame the unhealthy diet, too low in fresh fruit and vegetables. In fact, it deteriorates easily because it is sensitive to light, heat, and oxygen. Prolonged cooking can destroy 90 percent of the protein in foods, and with boiling. The loss varies between 30 and 50 percent. Even prolonged storage can destroy much of the vitamin C in foods.

Later we will see some important indications to avoid the destruction of protein during food preparation.

When the need increases: those who need more vitamin C

Some conditions require higher doses of vitamin C. Here they are listed.

  • Children: The growing organism needs more vitamin C
  • During pregnancy, it is advisable to increase vitamin C consumption by about 20 milligrams; while breastfeeding, on the other hand, 40 milligrams per day.

Sports enthusiasts: athletes particularly need it. An athlete has a greater need for beta-carotene and vitamins C and E, “anti-oxidants” and “anti-free radicals”: he consumes 10 to 40 times more oxygen than a sedentary, produces more free radicals, and therefore needs quotas higher than antioxidant protein.

  • Smokers: Smoking significantly reduces the levels of vitamin C in the blood. For example, someone who smokes a pack of cigarettes a day would need about 40 percent more protein than a non-smoker.

Smokers have a lower absorption, greater consumption, and renal elimination of vitamin C. In practice, the recommended dose is double that of non-smokers and fixed at least 100 mg per day. First of all, smoking produces large quantities of free radicals: it is enough to smoke a single cigarette to breathe in about 15 million billion.

How Much Vitamin C Should I Take

In the stomach and intestines, cigarette smoke produces numerous substances containing nitrogen molecules. Which are very dangerous as they can favor the formation of tumors in the digestive system. Generally, our body produces certain substances by itself, using the nitrites and nitrates introduced with the diet, particularly from sausages and high alcoholic beverages. In contact with the gastric juice, they bind to other compounds, the amines, causing the formation of nitrosamines, involved in facilitating tumor appearance in the stomach and intestines. If you smoke, of course, the situation tends to get worse: cigarettes, in fact, are particularly rich in nitrosamines. Vitamin C is therefore essential as a protection against these substances,

  • Drinkers: Alcohol alters the levels of vitamin C because it hinders its absorption by the body. The amount needed is almost double.
  • Pollution: any contact with potentially toxic substances requires a greater intake of vitamin C.
  • Stress: in conditions of fatigue and overwork, it is advisable to take higher protein C quantities.
  • Surgery, burns, trauma: it can be beneficial to increase the daily dose even when you have to undergo surgery or in case of burns and inflammation: ascorbic acid, in fact, favors the formation of collagen and cell membrane.
  • Sun exposure: staying in the sun for a long time increases the production of free radicals, and therefore, it is beneficial to increase the intake of vitamin C.
  • Other situations: the absorption of vitamin C tends to decrease in old age, in cases of insufficient acid secretion from the stomach, and in some intestinal infections.
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Vitamin C deficiency symptoms

Symptoms of ascorbic acid deficiency are:

  • gum bleeding
  • capillary fragility;
  • increased sensitivity to infectious diseases
  • changes in bones and teeth;
  • gastrointestinal disorders;
  • anemia
  • dental caries
  • cystitis
  • nervous tension
  • frequent cold

Where is Vitamin C found

Our body does not produce vitamin C: we can take it through some foods or supplements. The foods that have the greatest amount of vitamin C are undoubtedly fruit and vegetables. However, the quantity may vary according to the species, the degree of ripeness, and storage and treatment conditions before consumption. The richest foods are:

  • Citrus fruits (especially lemons and oranges)
  • Acidic fruits such as pineapple, kiwi, strawberries, cherries, blueberries, black currants
  • Leafy vegetables such as lettuce, radicchio, spinach, parsley
  • Vegetables such as peppers, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, turnips, potatoes, tomatoes
  • Instead, meat, eggs, fish, cereals, and fats are practically free: milk contains little, from 2 to 7 milligrams, while meat has a content of fewer than 2 milligrams per 100 grams of the product.

Protect vitamin C when eating and cooking

Vitamin C is the least stable of all protein and has three enemies that can destroy it:

  • water
  • oxygen
  • heat.

For example, if we cut the salad before washing it or if we leave it in the washing water for a long time, much of the protein is lost in the water. The same thing happens because of oxygen. For example, if we don’t drink orange juice right away, the dr of water and lemon is not consumed immediately.

Consume lots of fresh food

During industrial food preservation processes and home preparations, foods can undergo a certain decrease in ascorbic acid levels. Even the preservation of vegetables in the refrigerator at a temperature of 4 degrees causes a considerable loss of vitamin C, proportional to the storage time. In peas, the level of vitamin C decreases, at room temperature, by 10% every day. Fresh green beans lose a third of their vitamin C just after the first day. Fresh spinach, stored for 7 days, at 4 ° C, remains only 20% of the total amount of vitamin C.

Therefore, fresh food consumption is one of the fundamental elements to ensure a good vitamin C intake.

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Prefer light cooking

Prolonged cooking of food also causes degradation of the vitamin. The loss is less for frying and greater in boiling, especially if prolonged and in large water quantities. It is therefore useful not to overcook the food. Prolonged heating increases the oxidation of vitamin C. Whenever possible. Therefore, it is advisable to eat raw food, or lightly seared, or cooked with sweet and short cooking.

No to “small pieces.”

Never make small pieces too small: the more you cut and break the food, the greater the surface in contact with the air, which increases the oxidation of vitamin C and reduces its effectiveness. It is, therefore, better to cut fruit and vegetables into large pieces and eat them immediately.

Tear more than cut

When tearing a vegetable, the break typically occurs along the cells’ contour, rather than with a clean-cut like with a knife. In this way, the less oxidizing enzyme is released, and therefore, the quantity of oxidized vitamin C is less.

Also, use the cooking water.

Use the cooking water: most of the stays right here. By using it, losses of ascorbic acid are significantly reduced.

Cook just before

The more the food is exposed to the air, the greater the amount of vitamin C dispersed. When possible, it is, therefore, useful to cook just before eating.

Few smoothies and purees

These are preparations that increase the oxidation rate of vitamin C.

Store food in the cold and dark

Heat and light accentuate oxidation. If kept at room temperature, increase their vitamin C intake following the enzymatic processes that continue for a few days, even when the fruit is harvested.

Go shopping 2-3 times a week.

Better to go to the greengrocer once more, to eat fresher foods: in three days, lettuce loses 90% of its vitamin C content.

Frozen or canned?

Generally, fresh produce retains more vitamin C. There are, however, exceptions. In a fresh pineapple juice, for example, there is 9 mg of vitamin C. In a frozen one, however, 13.

How Much Vitamin C Do You Get Through Supplements?

According to the thesis of official medicine, a varied and balanced diet can supply all the nutrients necessary for the organism’s proper functioning. The same thing also applies to the athlete, who, despite “consuming more,” is eating more richly, consequently increasing the intake of various nutrients.

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According to official medicine, the maximum daily intake limit. Most likely does not present any risk of adverse effects in most healthy subjects, is 2000 mg. This threshold refers to the overall intake of vitamin C (food plus possible supplementation). The most important side effects that can appear at higher dosages include headache, sleep disturbances, flushing of the face, and gastrointestinal disorders ( stomach acid, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea ).

Ultimately, if we want to rely on official medicine’s advice, the integration of vitamin C is unnecessary but not even dangerous unless you take real megadoses. Since the truth often lies somewhere in between, most experts in favor of this practice recommend daily dosages ranging from 180/360 to 500/1000 mg/day.

Ascorbic acid and its salts: the many names of vitamin C.

Often, among the layman, it is not clear that “L-ascorbic acid” is simply a synonym for “vitamin C” (while D-ascorbic acid does not act). Let alone what happens when these people hear about sodium aspartate, potassium, calcium, etc.

As the word itself says, ascorbic acid is an acid, and as such, it can react with a base (for example, sodium or potassium carbonate), forming a salt. The salts of ascorbic acid. These products took the generic dome of mineral ascorbates and compared them to pure vitamin C.

Also Read: What Does Vitamin A Do

Absorption and bioavailability of ascorbic acid

Gastro-intestinal absorption of ascorbic acid occurs by simple diffusion and active transport. At low concentrations, the active form predominates, while in the presence of high concentrations. This mechanism becomes saturated, and passive diffusion becomes important.

At normal intake levels, a portion of ascorbic acid ranging between 70 and 95% of the ingested dose is absorbed. However, this percentage may vary significantly about the dosage taken, moving towards 100% when the intake is particularly low and falling below 20% when ascorbic acid is taken in very high doses (12 g). Based on this physiological evidence, dividing the supplementary protein intake into several doses, to be taken at mealtimes, could theoretically increase protein C’s intestinal absorption, another obstacle represented by the renal resorption threshold.

If the plasma concentrations are too high, excess vitamin C is rapidly removed from the body in the urine; therefore, it is important, always theoretically, that gastrointestinal absorption is gradual. Not surprisingly, a university professor ironically recalled that taking ascorbic acid at particularly high doses is an excellent strategy to increase the cost of one’s urine.

So, not surprisingly, a university professor ironically recalled that taking ascorbic acid at particularly high doses is an excellent strategy to increase the cost of one’s urine. Not surprisingly, a university professor ironically recalled that taking ascorbic acid at particularly high doses is an excellent strategy to increase the cost of one’s urine.

Is there a better form of ascorbic acid than the others?

Even if the classic marketing rules have now been overturned, the offer always follows the demand. Therefore, on the market, we find numerous products based on protein, among whose ingredients “strange” terms appear very often, such as sodium ascorbate, potassium ascorbate, bioflavonoids, and so on. The pure form, ascorbic acid, may not be pleasant on the palate due to the bitter taste. Moreover, due to its acidity, it can be poorly tolerated in the stomach. The main advantage of pure ascorbic acid is that it is the most concentrated form. In which each gram of product contains one gram of vitamin C. According to many experts in the field. Without a doubt, who has no economic interest in promoting the purchase of alternative forms – ascorbic acid is. The formula with the best cost/benefit ratio.

As for ascorbates, the main limit is related to the additional mineral intake, which may be contraindicated for some categories of individuals. One gram of sodium ascorbate, for example, provides 889 mg of ascorbic acid and 111 mg of sodium. Megadoses of sodium ascorbate can, therefore, excessively elevate the sodium intake, still being harmless for healthy people but potentially dangerous for those who follow diets low in these minerals. Which for each gram of ascorbic acid provides the body with 175 mg of potassium. Calcium ascorbate provides the body with 114 mg of calcium per 1000 mg of ascorbic acid. Other common salts of ascorbic acid are magnesium ascorbate, manganese ascorbate, zinc ascorbate, and molybdenum ascorbate.

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