A lot of people take vitamin C as part of a daily vitamin routine. Some people take vitamin C to either ward off or to treat a cold. Vitamin C can increase resistance to viral and bacterial infections, and some allergies. While the medical jury is still deciding if taking vitamin C is really beneficial to treating the common cold, it is a necessary vitamin for normal growth and development. Vitamin C is also needed by your body for the growth and repair of your body’s tissues.
Why do you need vitamin C for your skin?
Vitamin C helps your skin heal. Plain and simple. It helps form scar tissue and heals cuts, scrapes and wounds. It also maintains and can help repair damage to your teeth, bones and cartilage. Researchers at the University of Leicester in England and at the Institute for Molecular and Cellular Biology in Portugal did a study in 2009 that found that vitamin C plays a major role in skin protection and regeneration. Their research found that vitamin C might improve healing by stimulating the inactive fibroblasts that are in our skin. These fibroblasts in turn form collagen which works with other proteins that are also found in our skin to strengthen, firm and smooth our skin. A more in depth explanation of how collagen works can be found in our previous post on how the Dermaroller gets rid of acne scars, and on our website in our discussion of collagen induction therapy. This is exciting news as this study explains that vitamin C helps protect the skin and helps our skin to repair itself.
Since vitamin C is an essential and water soluble vitamin, your body does not maintain any reserves of it. That means you need to make sure you are getting enough vitamin C each day.
Vitamin C is found naturally in fruits and vegetables. This is another good reason to maintain a healthy diet, since it will definitely protect and improve the health of your skin.
Vegetables that contain high amounts of vitamin C include: broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, green peppers, leafy greens, potatoes, red peppers, spinach, tomatoes, tomato juice, and winter squash.
Fruits that contain high amounts of vitamin C include: blueberries, cantaloupe, cranberries, grapefruit, kiwi, mango, oranges, papaya, pineapple, strawberries, watermelon and citrus fruit juices.
Cooking fruits and vegetables reduces the amount of vitamin C in them. Raw fruits and vegetables have their highest concentrations of vitamin C.
Many cereals and other foods are fortified with vitamin C as well. Vitamin C is also found in many mulit-vitamin supplements or can be taken as an individual supplement. Since your body does not store vitamin C the risks associated with taking too much is low, but doses of more than 2,000 mg/day of certain types of Vitamin C can cause stomach and lower intestine disruptions. Ideally women should take at least the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of 75 mg/day and men should have 90 mg/day. The RDA is lower for teenagers, children and infants. This RDA for Vitamin C will prevent diseases such as scurvy. Some researchers recommend that the daily dose of Vitamin C should be at least 2,000 mg/day.
Take a look at what you’re eating. Does it contain vitamin C? A good diet of fruits and vegetables as well as using vitamin C fortified foods will help keep your skin healthy and smooth.