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Smart way to live long life

Smart way to live long life

Health benefits of vitamin C

Health benefits of vitamin C

When winter is sneaking around, first cold days come up and temperatures go rapidly down, some of us are often getting cold. Common cold usually takes around 1 week and our first and best known home medicine used to be vitamin C.

For centuries were eroded doctors and explorers trying to find out what causes seafarers terrible diseases, which ravaged both body and mind. Thanks to them, today we know that it was caused by chronic vitamin C deficiency, brought on by lack of fresh fruit and vegetables. First mention of the use of sour lemons to cure scurvy on one of the Pacific voyages comes from 1593. 

Nowadays, the deficit may not have the classic form of scurvy, but the deficiency can lead to increased susceptibility to various infections, poor wound healing, but also in a number of diseases where oxidative stress plays a role.

What is the main function of vitamin C in the body?

Vitamin C (ascorbate) has many functions throughout the body and a small amount can be found in all types of cells. As an antioxidant, vitamin C provides protection against oxidative stress-induced cellular damage by scavenging of reactive oxygen species. At high levels it is maintained in most immune cells, it is a key nutrient for our immune system. 

Vitamin C is involved in the formation of the skin barrier and collagen in the dermis and plays a physiological role in the skin against skin oxidation, in antiaging of wrinkles, and in cell signal pathways of cell growth and differentiation, which are related to the occurrence and development of various skin diseases 

Vitamin C also stimulates the proper production of white blood cells and also destruction of cells, which have already fulfilled their function of absorbing unwanted pathogens and therefore need to be eliminated. At the same time, it helps to reduce fatigue and larger doses of vitamin C may lead to a greater reduction in common cold duration.

Essential nutrient for collagen production 

Vitamin C is an absolutely essential cofactor of enzymes in synthesis of collagen, which is important for the health of supporting tissues, bones, cartilage, joints, blood vessels and skin. That is why joint and muscle pain is associated with vitamin C deficiency. Also epithelialization and wound healing process can be affected as sufficient synthesis of collagen in skin cells is required to repair the skin tissue.

The importance to amino acid metabolism

Vitamin C is also a cofactor in the biosynthesis of carnitine, a molecule required for the oxidation of fatty acids. We also need ascorbic acid for normal tyrosine metabolism, which influences for example our memory and performance in stressful situations as many neurotransmitters are made up from a base of amino acids (tyrosine is the precursor of neurotransmitters like norepinephrine or dopamine). 

Can vitamin C prevent heart deseases?

Vitamin C has been shown to be an effective therapeutic for reducing total serum cholesterol as it stimulates the initial step in cholesterol metabolism to bile acids.  Some studies also suggest that vitamin C can slow down the progression of atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries). Its powerful antioxidant effect can also prevent harmful oxidation of fats like cholesterol and polyunsaturated fatty acids. It is actually the oxidised form of these which gets readily deposited in the arteries. Vitamin C has been shown to enhance iron absorption by capturing non-heme iron and storing it in a form that's more easily absorbed by your body.


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