Vitamin C deficiency can lead to these health issues; how to improve intake

Vitamin C has several important functions from protecting cells from damage to maintaining healthy skin, blood vessels, bones and cartilage.

The role of immunity in pandemic times is more than ever before. Vitamin C also known as ascorbic acid is an essential micronutrient and is important to boost immunity and prevent from several infections and even chronic diseases. The nutrient can also benefit people with heart diseases or blood pressure and can protect end organ damage and improve vascular endothelial function, which helps regulate blood clotting, as per studies.

Vitamin C has several important functions from protecting cells from damage to maintaining healthy skin, blood vessels, bones and cartilage. It also helps in healing of wounds.

Vitamin C is an essential nutrient to boost immunity. It is observed that patients with common NCDs, like diabetes and hypertension, may require more vitamin C than others, owing to the high oxidative stress seen in these patients. Individuals can boost their regular nutritional intake through vitamin C supplementation, in addition to a rich, balanced diet, comprising citrus foods and tomatoes.

How much vitamin C we need; what happens when you eat too much of it

Adults aged 19 to 64 need 40 mg of vitamin C a day, according to NHS (National Health Service, UK). Since it cannot be stored in the body, you need it in your diet every day. However, one should not take excessive vitamin C to avoid side-effects like stomach-ache, diarrhoea or flatulence.

How to know if you have vitamin C deficiency

An estimated 74% adults in North India and 46% adults in North India and South India are deficient in this essential vitamin. People who suffer from noncommunicable diseases are more deficient in vitamin C than others and as a result they suffer from low immunity levels.

The common symptoms of vitamin C deficiency include bleeding gums, muscle and joint pains, anaemia and slow healing of wounds.

Dr Shah suggests that a diet rich in vitamin C along with its supplements can help boost the levels and maintain optimal health.

Vitamin C deficiency is common in older adults. Exposure to pollution or pollutants and high tobacco usage can also lead to deficiency.

Lifestyle changes that can improve Vitamin C levels in the body

Vitamin C is a crucial nutrient to boost immunity. A rich, balanced diet, comprising citrus foods and tomatoes is essential for regular nutritional intake of vitamin C. Alongside good nutrition and diet, increasing the intake of micronutrients through vitamin C supplementation can enhance health outcomes and boost immunity.

Vitamin C sources that one can include in summer diet

Oranges are best known as an excellent source of Vitamin C. However, apart from that, certain foods packed with vitamin C are kiwis, strawberries, broccoli, tomatoes, cauliflower, and red peppers.

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