Benefits of Vitamin C

Vitamin C is one of the most important nutrients for proper health, but it is one of the least durable vitamins. In its natural form in foods, it is very unstable and loses potency under the influence of temperature, light, improper storage conditions and food preparation. Due to the fact that people are not capable of synthesizing vitamin C, it must be supplied in the diet.

Vitamin C is a water soluble nutrient found in some foods. Because it is water soluble, it is not stored in the body and must be continuously replenished. Vitamin C acts as an anti-oxidant, helping to protect the body from damaging free radicals. (Free radicals are compounds formed when our bodies convert the food we eat into energy.) People are also exposed to free radicals in the environment from pollutants, cigarette smoke and ultraviolet light from the sun. Vitamin C also helps the immune system to work properly.

The body needs Vitamin C to synthesize collagen, a protein required for healthy tissues such as skin and muscle. As we age, the body produces less collagen and the skin becomes less elastic and begins to sag. Vitamin C helps to regenerate collagen to firm up skin and replenish tissues in muscles, cartilage, ligaments and tendons. Therefore, we need to provide an adequate supply of Vitamin C in our bodies.