One of the most important things to note about essential nutrients like vitamin C is that they are needed daily. This nutrient plays a vital role in building up our immune system and ensuring the proper functioning of our body, therefore they are needed regularly.
As our body cannot produce this nutrient on its own, we need to take foods, fruits, vegetables, and supplements that are rich in vitamin C. But, we must always ensure that we consume only the specific amount required by our body.
This article discusses the appropriate amount of vitamin C our body requires to function perfectly.
This nutrient, also known as ascorbic acid, easily dissolves in water and can be found in some foods. It is essential for a variety of roles in the human body. Some of these functions include;
- Acting as an antioxidant in the body.
- It enables the production of collagen.
- Promotes wound healing.
- It enhances the body's ability to absorb iron from plant-based meals.
- Vitamin C plays a vital role in our immune system functions.
- It prevents cell decay brought on by free radicals.
These free radicals form when our bodies convert food into energy. Air pollution, sunlight rays, and cigarette smoke could also be sources of free radicals.
How much vitamin C ought you to consume each day?
The Institute of Medicine created a guide or reference values for various nutrient intake levels.
The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) takes average daily nutrient consumption from both foods and supplements into account and satisfies 97-98% of healthy persons for particular gender and age groups.
The RDAs for vitamin C are as follows;
Little ones within the age of 7 - 12 months need a large amount of vitamin C, especially if they don't get enough breast milk. They require about 50 mg daily.
The amount of vitamin C needed by kids depends on their age. Kids within 1 - 3 years require 15 mg, while those about 4 - 8 require 25 mg daily.
At this stage, the body requires a good amount of nutrients to meet its developmental needs. This stage is often between ages 9 - 13 years, and the daily intake is 45 mg.
Teenagers between 14 and 18 need 65 – 75 mg of vitamin C daily.
Older people's daily requirements differ by gender. Women aged 19 and older need 75 mg, whereas men of similar age require 90 mg.
Pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers
Women carrying babies require more vitamin C than average and even more when breastfeeding. This is to ensure the little one does not suffer from a vitamin C deficiency.
The RDA for pregnant women is 85 mg and 120 mg for breastfeeding women. It is noteworthy that all smokers require an additional 30-39 mg of this vitamin. In food labelling, the %DV symbol is used to compare the number of nutrients in a single serving of food to the recommended daily intake.
Sources of vitamin C
Typically, fruits and vegetables are the finest sources of vitamin C. Eating these foods raw is a good fit to get the necessary dose, as heat destroys vitamin C in food. Some of the top food sources of nutrients are;
- Brussel Sprouts
- Red and green peppers
Vitamin C is sometimes added to some dishes and drinks. However, you must always check the product labels to be sure they contain the proper dosage or buy from safe brands like Chewwies, which go the extra mile to offer only the best.
Effects of excess vitamin c intake
Too much intake of vitamin C can be harmful to your health. Some of the symptoms of excessive intake include;
In severe cases, we see things like hemochromatosis, a condition in which the body retains too much iron. This may affect individuals differently.
Best way to prevent a vitamin C deficiency
Diets always top this list. Another great option could be the use of supplements. If you want to make sure you're getting enough vitamin C, consume rich and reliable supplements.
There are several different types of supplements, however, ensure to pick one that ticks all the dots of an excellent supplement!
Vitamin C is one of those nutrients the body cannot do without and is needed daily for our body to function effectively. Consuming the right diet and taking the proper supplement could be the fastest way to meet the daily intake listed above.