A Guide to Vitamin C
The C Vitamin has got to be the most widely known vitamin. It is not surprising because the body needs Vitamin C for over 300 functions. In fact, the Vitamin C has been proven to help protect against heart disease, cancer, and other serious illnesses.
Without this Vitamin the body would not be able to heal itself. This is because Vitamin C is vital for the formation of collagen. Whenever a person has a cut or an injury it is the collagen that helps repair the damage and without sufficient Vitamin C this would be almost impossible.
Collagen has a multitude of functions in the body, including keeping the organs in place, and it would not be able to do this without sufficient Vitamin C.
The C Vitamin is also an antioxidant for the body and helps other vitamins and minerals to be absorbed better. Folic acid and iron, for example, need the c vitamin to maximise their usefulness. The more C Vitamin that the body has, the better its defense against colds and other common ailments and the Vitamin may not prevent a person catching a virus but it does help speed up the recovery process.
There is Vitamin C in almost every fruit and vegetable but some have far higher Vitamin C content than others. Cranberries and melons have high C Vitamin content. In fact, tropical fruits have the highest C Vitamin amounts of all fruit. Hot peppers are amongst the richest sources of the C Vitamin when it comes to vegetables.
The hotter the pepper, the higher its Vitamin C content. Unfortunately, the Vitamin C is water soluble so many vegetables lose their effectiveness as a provider if they are boiled for a long time. Steaming or quick stir frying vegetables ensures that more of their Vitamin C content is retained.
The recommended daily amount of the Vitamin C is easily obtained from eating five portions of fruit and vegetables a day if they are consumed raw or cooked quickly.
C vitamin supplements are extremely useful to ensure that people obtain sufficient amounts. However, if a person begins feeling tired or lethargic then a Vitamin C supplement may help them overcome this fatigue. There is no danger of having too much C Vitamin as the body simply excretes the excess.
When it comes to Vitamin C we must recognize Linus Pauling and his advocacy of Vitamin C. Linus Pauling was a Nobel prize winner who advocated taking large doses of Vitamin C. You can find out more about him at the Linus Pauling Institute. Vitamin C is Known to have many beneficial functions in the body.
It is important to the structural component of blood vessels, tendons, ligaments, and bone. It plays a vital role in the synthesis of the neurotransmitter, norepinephrine. Neurotransmitters are critical and involved in brain function and are known to affect mood. Vitamin C is required for the synthesis of carnitine, an amino acid essential for the transport of fat into the mitochondria, for conversion to energy.
The mitochondria are known as the powerhouse of the cell. Recent research suggests that vitamin C is involved in the metabolism of cholesterol to bile acids, which may have implications for blood cholesterol levels and the incidence of gallstones. Vitamin C is a highly effective antioxidant.
Even in small amounts vitamin C can protect indispensable molecules in the body, such as proteins, lipids (fats), carbohydrates, and nucleic acids (DNA and RNA) from damage by free radicals and reactive oxygen species that can be generated during normal metabolism as well as through exposure to toxins and pollutants (e.g. smoking). Vitamin C may also be able to regenerate other antioxidants such as vitamin E.
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