The benefits of Vitamin C have been studied for years and are very important for your body. We’ll go over how the Vitamin C helps your immune system, what makes it such an important antioxidant for you to have, some interesting research studies done, and how much you should take.
Hint: at least 200mg/day.
Many don’t realize the amazing benefits of Vitamin C. Let’s go over some of these...
I’m sure you know about the timeless tale of taking extra Vitamin C when you feel a cold coming along. Yes, it does help with your immune system but it does not prevent or cure the common cold.
Why is it that most people think of Vitamin C as soon as they feel sick?
One reason is it’s effective in reducing your cold symptoms & duration by reducing the amount of free radicals in the body.
What Makes Vitamin C So Important?
Over 80% of the body is made of water and, how lucky for us, Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin. This means it can travel wherever water goes.
According to the Linus Pauling Institute, some of the benefits of Vitamin C helps to protect many molecules from free radical damage. This include the nucleic acids (both DNA & RNA), proteins and fats (lipids). Also, Vitamin C helps with plasma (read: blood) protection.
What does this mean for you? It means that Vitamin C is great in the battle against cancer and many degenerative diseases (i.e. Alzheimer’s, Cardiovascular Disease, Diabetes, etc).
Not only does Vitamin C act as an antioxidant but it also helps to “bring out the best” in other vitamins and enzymes as well. Just to give you some examples, Vitamin E, superoxide dismutase (SOD) and glutathione all benefit from teaming up with Vitamin C.
In the Best Sources of Antioxidants section I mention the principle of “complementarity.” This means that the combination of 2 or more nutrients/antioxidants is much more effective and potent than a single nutrient/antioxidant alone. Same principle applies to Vitamin C.
Example...Vitamin C and Vitamin E.
One function of Vitamin E is to donate a hydrogen to prevent the outer protective barrier of a cell from being damaged (lipid bilayer oxidation is the technical term). Vitamin C will come in and neutralize the Vitamin E radical. And don’t worry about Vitamin C because it goes off to perform other functions and benefits.
What Else You Should Expect From Vitamin C
Other than Vitamin C being a great antioxidant, there are a few other important things it does for your body.
Some of these include...
• Helps prevent cardiovascular disease by lowering cholesterol and blood pressure. A study in 2000 published in Lancet, taking 500 mg of Vitamin C per day can lower your high blood pressure by more than 9%.
And if you want to lower your blood pressure significantly, then you may want to take your Vitamin C with Vitamin E, Vitamin A and zinc. This may seem like a lot but that’s where a good multi-vitamin comes in to play.
• Helpful for fighting allergies and asthma. Vitamin C does this by reducing the amount of histamines produced in check and helps clear it out of the bloodstream faster. Even better when taken with Vitamin E and Selenium.
• Helps to prevent cataracts.
• Enhances wound healing and recovery from surgery and helps to make more collagen. This is important because collagen is in your bones, tendons, teeth, blood vessels, skin and everything which has proteins involved.