Vitamin C Rich Foods
It’s the season of cough and cold- and sure enough, every household has someone who is getting sick. When you get a cold, you can’t wait for it to go away. Is there a way to make that happen?
Most people say that if you want to beat the cold, you should have enough vitamin C. But how do you make sure that you are getting enough vitamin C?
I did my research, and made a list of foods rich in vitamin C.
Why do we need to include vitamin C in our diet?
Vitamin C is an essential nutrient. While other animals can synthesize vitamin C, human bodies cannot. Vitamin C is a water-soluble compound, and humans cannot store it in their bodies. Hence, we must make sure that we are including enough vitamin C-rich foods in our diet. So, what are some of the good sources of vitamin C?
This is a no brainer- if you are looking for a vegetable that packs vitamin C, go for broccoli. I stalk of broccoli contains more than the daily requirement of vitamin C. With no cholesterol, broccoli is also rich in vitamin E and fibre. No wonder broccoli is considered as one of the healthiest vegetables in the world.
Kale is considered a superfood, and for good reasons. It is rich in vitamin C and vitamin E, folate, manganese and fibre. It also contains carotenoids and lutein, and scientists consider it to contain many other potentially helpful compounds. Try stir frying or sautéing kale instead of boiling it, as it tends to lose its nutrients when boiled.
3. Bell Peppers
Yes, those brightly coloured bell peppers are full of vitamin C. Moreover, they are rich in carotenoids- which are good for your eyes. The best thing about bell peppers is that they can be added to a variety of dishes, and are equally versatile in Asian, Indian and continental cuisine.
Strawberry can be more than your favourite ice cream flavour. It is rich in vitamin C and anti-oxidants, and manganese. The best thing about strawberries is that you can eat them raw- which preserves all the nutrients.
You may be surprised to know this- kiwi fruit is not native to New Zealand. It is native to China- it is called “Chinese gooseberry”. Whatever be its country of origin, kiwi is packed with vitamin C, K and E. Apart from that, kiwifruit pulp is rich in lutein and carotenoids- so if you want to keep your eyes healthy, go for kiwifruit.
6. Brussels Sprouts
Brussel sprouts are becoming more popular because they are rich in vitamin C and vitamin K. In fact, a 100 gm serving will get you more than your daily requirements for both nutrients.
This fruit is not only unique in its sweet-sour taste, it is a great source of vitamin C. A 100 gm serving of pineapple contains more than half of your daily vitamin C requirements. It is also rich in manganese.
Papaya is delicious, and is a great source for vitamin C. In fact, a whole medium-sized papaya gives you more than your daily needed intake of vitamin C. It is also one of the best sources of vitamin A. What’s more, papaya is also great in aiding digestion.
When it comes to vitamin C, you just can’t go without Amla. The Indian gooseberry is considered one of the richest sources of vitamin C. It is also rich is fibre and iron- and you can have it a variety of ways. Sun dry it, make pickles of it or even eat it raw – amla is good either way. You can even grind dried amla with hair oil or hair masks and apply it topically on your scalp.
You were probably expecting orange here. But let me tell you- guava contains four times the vitamin C than an orange. Yes, a 100-gm serving of orange contains 64% of your daily requirement of vitamin C- and an equivalent serving of guava contains 275% of daily required dose of vitamin C! They are also chock full of fibre, and the red-pink guavas also contain a higher percentage of carotenoids than the green varieties. What’s more- guava seeds are rich in vitamin A- so try not to discard them.
Other sources of vitamin C
While vitamin C-rich foods are easily available, there are many exotic or uncommon foods that are rich in vitamin C. Some of them are:
1. Kakadu plums
2. Acerola berries
3. Rose hips
5. Bok Choy
6. Turnip greens
7. Beet greens
8. Collard greens
10. Swiss chard
Vitamin C benefits.
1. It is vital for tissue repair.
2. It is used to synthesize neurotransmitters and enzymes.
3. Vitamin C is an anti-oxidant, so if you want to fight signs of ageing or slow down tissue degeneration- vitamin C is a must.
4. Vitamin C aids in collagen repletion- so it keeps wrinkles at bay.
5. Studies suggest that vitamin C is good for brain health. Lower vitamin C levels are linked to diseases like Alzheimer’s and dementia.
6. Lastly, vitamin C helps the body absorb iron more efficiently.