The a,b and C factor

By: Judy Davie - The Food Coach

It is worth noting in this week's Market Fresh report how much of the produce is known for its high vitamin C content. Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, navel oranges, and tangelos head up the cast of fruits not forgetting the vegetables which all contribute to providing the body with this extremely valuable nutrient. I always say you can never get enough vitamin C. The recommended daily intake is the equivalent of eating one kiwifruit a day however no harm will come to you from consuming much more vitamin C in the form of fresh fruit and vegetables.

There are countless studies which indicate that higher intakes of fruit and vegetables are associated with decreased incidence of stroke, coronary heart disease, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and about 30% of cancers and vitamin C is one of the best markers for fruit and vegetable intake. What scientists do not know is whether the observed health effects of fruit and vegetable ingestion are due to vitamin C in isolation or a combination of Vitamin C and other plant compounds in the whole food.

Studies suggest that isolated vitamin C from fresh produce compared to vitamin C in a synthetic supplement is the same, however taking it as part of a whole food is much better because, accompanying the Vitamin C is a package of numerous other beneficial nutrients. It is a job-lot of good stuff that your body cries out for every single day.

Regardless. Vitamin C is an extremely important nutrient especially with the world on heightened alert due to the ongoing risks associated with contracting Covid 19.

Vitamin C has many roles, but 3 key functions are to protect the body from disease.

1. The antioxidant properties of Vitamin C help to neutralise free radical molecules that cause oxidative damage to body cells. Left untapped these free radicals can lead to premature aging and cancer. The antioxidants are also vital to protect against a build-up of arterial plaque to ensure a healthy flow of blood to the heart and protect against heart disease.

2. Our skin and connective tissue is made from collagen and the production of collagen is heavily reliant on adequate supplies of vitamin C. Without vitamin C, the body can't heal. The inability of wounds to heal is one of the first clues to scurvy and vitamin C deficiency. Other symptoms include bleeding gums, bruising, loose teeth, and loss of skin elasticity.

3. A good reason to load up on lemons during winter is because vitamin C really does help protect against colds and flus. Vitamin C strengthens the immune system by boosting our white blood cell count, cells which are necessary to detect disease and destroy toxins.

The bottom line is

  • Enjoy as many foods you know to be rich in vitamin C including berries, oranges, tangelos, avocado and kiwifruit every day.
  • Know how important vitamin C is and how it protects the body.
  • Understand that most nutrients work synergistically and are better taken in the form of whole food.


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