All about the responsibilities and functions of vitamin C in the body
Below is a list of the biological functions of vitamin C, aka ascorbic acid, has within the human body:
Nervous system functions and hormones
Ascorbic acid is required for the normal functionality of neurological processes. Vitamin C is involved in the formation of hormones and messengers, in particular in the synthesis of catecholamines (norepinephrine, adrenaline) and glucocorticoids such as cortisol.
Stress releases both types of hormones, which is why increased anxiety leads to an enhanced requirement.
One can imagine that the adrenal glands constantly use its stored vitamin C in chronic stress to protect itself from oxidative stress and to produce stress hormones.
Participation in some other processes in the CNS is suspected and is under investigation. According to studies, the largest vitamin C stores are located in the cerebrum.
These stores are last emptied when there is a deficiency. It is one of the reasons for the assumption that the vitamin is a high priority for the functionality of the brain.
A positive effect of vitamin C was also found in the study of neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, dementia or multiple sclerosis.
Protection of cells as radical scavengers
Vitamin C is an important antioxidant. Free radicals are highly reactive molecules that are normally used in the body.
In times of inflammation, infection and unhealthy lifestyle, however, free radicals arise in large quantities and threaten to cause collateral damage in the body.
Antioxidants such as vitamin C buffer this by neutralizing these excess radicals. This is one of the reasons why vitamin C has also attributed to an anti-aging effect.
Support of the skin and connective tissue
For a healthy and firm connective tissue, collagen is an important nutrient. Collagen, such as the Keto Collagen Peptide Protein Powder, is a structural protein that forms a mesh in the tissue and is involved in the regulation of moisture. Our body needs Vitamin C to produce collagen.
With age, the production of the structural protein decreases steadily. Thus, the more important it is to take all the necessary building blocks for the production of collagen.
The less collagen there is in the tissue, the worse the moisture balance. As a result, we encounter wrinkle formation, slackening of connective tissue and susceptibility to destructive influences.
Strengthening the immune system
Vitamin C is particularly known as an immune booster. Ascorbic acid supports the natural defenses and has a beneficial effect on the body during disease. For example, it is a well-known home remedy to drink hot lemon in case of a cold to absorb more of the valuable vitamin.
This effect is due to the fact that vitamin C is needed to form the master antioxidant in the body – glutathione. More specifically, it helps in the formation and regeneration of glutathione.
Active glutathione is important for every tissue in the body and especially for immune cells to fight pathogens and inflammation. Vitamin C deficiency, therefore, impairs the immune system’s effects and can lead to more infections and inflammation.
Functions of the visual cells
The highest density of vitamin C within the entire body lies in the eye (along with the adrenal gland). By sufficient intake of the nutrient, you can slow down the loss of vision. The enrichment of the vitamin in the eye increases up to a dose of 2000 mg per day.
Intake of iron and other nutrients
Iron, like vitamin C, is an essential nutrient that must be absorbed through nutrition. The absorption of iron without vitamin C is not guaranteed enough.
Many foods, such as spinach, contain both iron and vitamin C – a perfect combination. In addition to iron, ascorbic acid improves the absorption of all bivalent cations, which also include magnesium and zinc.
Iron deficiency is a common occurrence, especially in women, which is why the trace element is often added.
Anyone who takes iron as a dietary supplement should pay attention to an early vitamin C intake. For example, you can drink a glass of orange juice when taking the product to increase bioavailability.
Vitamin C deficiency: What can happen?
A vitamin C deficiency is rare in healthy people with a conscious lifestyle. Nevertheless, due to the above factors, there may be some undersupply or increased demand.
This is also the case when someone doesn’t tolerate products with vitamin C (e.g. fructose intolerance) and the diet is, therefore, rather one-sided.
The following symptoms may occur in a stronger or attenuated form with vitamin C deficiency:
Abdominal pain and diarrhea
Depression or depressive episodes (see The Reishi Mushroom For Depression, Youth & Illness Resistance)
Slacked connective tissue
Susceptibility to infectious diseases
Headaches to migraines (see Natural Home Remedies For Headaches & Migraines)
Premature signs of aging
The strongest form of vitamin C deficiency is scurvy. The disease occurs when the patient is massively undersupplied for about three months.
There is no reason to worry about people who even eat fruit or vegetables from time to time or drink juices. Occasionally, the deficiency disease occurs in babies and is referred to as Möller-Barlow syndrome.
The symptoms of scurvy are severe and seriously endanger health. The complaints are non-specific:
Skin (see The Best Natural Tips For Acne & Other Skin Problems)
Poor wound healing (see How To Speed Up Wound Healing & Treat Swelling Naturally)
Scurvy is treated with an administration of vitamin C and heals completely in the early stages.
Vitamin C in the treatment of oncological diseases
There are new, interesting studies in cancer therapy and research. It has been known for some time that vitamin C is intended to protect cells from a pathological mutation.
This happens, among other things, due to the function of the vitamin as an antioxidant. Ascorbic acid is considered a preventative against the development of tumors.
Experimental medicine uses high-dose vitamin C to treat oncological diseases. Although ascorbic acid does not replace surgical or drug cancer therapy, it is intended to significantly increase the likelihood of successful treatment. Doctors administer vitamin C immediately before chemotherapy to increase efficacy.
Does Vitamin C have a preventive effect on infections?
Two camps have been arguing here for decades. One side says it can prevent infections, while the other side claims it is all humbug. According to a meta-analysis, additional vitamin C cannot protect against infectious diseases such as flu if already sufficient care is provided.
In the event of a shortage, it can be of aid. However, with already sufficient supply exists, then more does not help automatically anymore.
But now comes the big “but”, because it does not prevent, but minimally accelerates the regeneration process.
This means that with more vitamin C, you will be just as likely to get the flu or the common cold, but you will be able to get rid of it a little faster and symptoms may not be so extreme. So bring on the hot lemon drink after all.
How to optimally absorb vitamin C
Ascorbic acid is stored in various organ systems in the organism and is permanently available. It is important to replenish the reserves regularly.
The memory in the central nervous system remains filled the longest, but it only sparsely releases the stored vitamin C from this particular reserve.
Additional memory must be refilled regularly. It is not possible for the body to absorb very large amounts of ascorbic acid at once, as the ascorbic acid transporters have limited capacities in the intestine.
For this reason, recording/intake should take place several times a day. Those who integrate fruit and vegetables into several meals a day usually cover their basic needs.
If you want to take slightly higher doses of the vitamin, you can control this both through your diet and through dietary supplements.
A tip: Drink green smoothies or regularly grab citrus, berries or kiwis as a snack. Freshly squeezed juices are also great suppliers of vitamin C. Red bell pepper sticks are also a good source.
In order to absorb enough vitamin C from the vegetables, I recommend a gentle preparation. Do not boil the vegetables to obtain important nutrients.
On average, the cooked vegetables already lose half of the vitamin C; the longer the dish is exposed to the heat, the higher the loss.
Raw food contains the largest amounts of vitamin C, with fruits the highest enrichment is hidden in the fruit bowl. Herbs can also be a healthy source of ascorbic acid for seasoning salads or as fresh infusions.
Is a vitamin C supplement useful and if so, how?
In some conditions such as depression, inflammatory diseases, chronic fatigue syndromes, acute exhaustion or immunodeficiency, the body’s ascorbic acid needs may exceed what is taken up through a healthy diet. Nutrition should always be the primary source of nutrients.
If, however, a low serum value is found, a supplement can be considered. In drugstores, you can find affordable vitamin C powder, which has been produced biotechnologically and has good bioavailability.
However, the acidic taste of pure ascorbic acid is not acceptable to many, and so it is best suitable in tablet form.
For a vitamin C supplement, the daily dose should be at least 500mg to ensure adequate supply, divided into several smaller portions. In the best case, a dose contains 100-300mg of pure vitamin C, and one should take it in 3-5 portions throughout the day.
In summary- Vitamin C is vital
Ascorbic acid is a vital vitamin that is sufficiently contained in fruits, vegetables, berries and sprouts. A healthy diet, therefore, covers the daily needs without any problems, with an unhealthy diet, however, symptoms of a subclinical deficiency may occur.
A slight deficiency can already lead to pronounced immunodeficiency, skin problems, wrinkles, bone weakness or chronic fatigue. Then it is highly advisable to increase the intake via the diet and to help in case of emergency by means of dietary supplements.
I hope you now got a full understanding of the important functions of vitamin C in your body. So, let us know how you keep your ascorbic acid supply at a healthy level in a comment below.
Also, please, share our website with your family and friends. This allows me to continue to write informative articles, share tips, recipes, natural remedies and free ebooks with you.
Furthermore, note that I am offering private talk sessions for those of you in need of an open ear, advice, moral support and/or encouragement during your time of spiritual awakening. Thus, if you ever feel misunderstood or hopeless, simply mail me, and I’m sure that together we will find a solution.
Keep in mind that you are unique spiritual beings, here to learn, grow and create a more loving, harmonious and fulfilling dimension for all of our collective system to dwell in.
Thank you for your support, devotion, courage and existence. You are appreciated, cherished and endlessly loved. Namaste~