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Dr. Andrew Rynne
MD
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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Article Home Adult and Senior Health Vitamin C and you

Vitamin C and you

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Vitamin C also called as L-ascorbic acid is an essential nutrient for many functions human of the body. It?s a water soluble vitamin act as antioxidants protect the body from free radicals.

 

 Functions of Vitamin C

  • Main function of vitamin C is it acts as antioxidants, which protects the body from free radicals.

  • Vitamin C is responsible for collagen production. Collagen is present in the muscles and bones. It is responsible for holding the cells intact.

  • Vitamin C helps to boost the immune system. It helps to heal abrasions and bruises.

  • Vitamin C also keeps the gums and gingiva in healthy state. People Vitamin C deficiency often develop black, swollen gums known as scurvy. 

Dietary sources of Vitamin C

 Plant sources - Goose berry, guava, broccoli, papaya, orange, lemon, spinach, cabbage.

Animal sources- Beef liver, oysters, cod roe. 

Dietary requirements 

Recommended dietary allowance

Mg per day

Adult male

90 mg per day

Adult female

75 mg per day

Tolerable upper intake level (adult male)

2, 000 mg per day

Tolerable upper intake level (adult female)

2, 000 mg per day

 

 Vitamin C deficiency

  • Formation of liver spots on the skin

  • Spongy and bleeding gums,

  • Swollen gums

  •  Bleeding from mucous membranes

  • Patients look pale and tired

  • Feels depressed and less active

  • Partially immobilized

  • In advanced deficiency the wound healing is delayed, loss of teeth, and eventually death. 

Therapeutic uses

  • Prevention and treatment of scurvy

  • Treatment of malnutrition

  • Functions as antioxidants

  • High doses of vitamin C helps in lead induced nerve and muscle injuries

  • Reduces the neurological deficit in stoke  

Adverse effects

Common adverse effects

  • Indigestion particularly when taken in empty stomach

  • Large doses or mega doses will cause diarrhea

  • Toxicity manifests as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, flushing of the face, headache, fatigue and disturbed sleep

  • Main toxic reaction in children is rashes 

Possible side effects