A lot of people take supplements to meet their recommended daily intake (RDI) of vitamin C, but fresh fruits and vegetables are the best sources. Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, plays numerous roles that are integral to overall bodily functions. It assists with cell protection, maintaining healthy skin & blood vessels, and it encourages wound healing. The most notable benefit is that it helps to encourage a healthier immune system.
In general, foods that are naturally rich in vitamin C are fruits and vegetables. Since the body doesn’t store vitamin C, people need to regularly consume it. Any leftover vitamin C that the body cannot use leaves via urine. According to the FDA, the RDI of vitamin C is 90 milligrams (mg) for adult males, and 75 mg for adult females. Pregnant women should consume 85 mg per day, and breastfeeding women should consume 120 mg per day. Take a look at the following 10 foods to make sure you always have enough vitamin C in the body.
One cup of this tart fruit satisfies about 185% of the RDI of vitamin C. Most people don’t typically eat a cup of kiwi, though; rather, they eat a single kiwi fruit, which has about 79% of the RDI of vitamin C. There was a study that monitored 30 people (ages 20-51), who ate 2-3 kiwis every day for one month. The results indicated that kiwis lowered triglyceride levels by 15% and blood platelet stickiness by 18%. That’s great news for people who have higher risk of stroke or blood clots.
You can’t have a list of vitamin C-rich foods and exclude strawberries. One cup of this classic summer berry delivers 108% of the RDI of vitamin C. In addition to the high vitamin C content, strawberries also contain folate, manganese, flavonoids, and other antioxidants. Studies have shown that the antioxidants in strawberries may reduce the risk of cancer, dementia, and diabetes.
Surprisingly, one cup of guava fruit offers 419% of the RDI of vitamin C. Guavas are tropical fruits that have yellow or green skin with bright pink or white flesh. They help to promote hydration and may even assist with blood pressure and cholesterol reduction.
Papayas are beneficial for both assisting with optimal digestion and boosting immune function. Papaya offers 97% of the RDI of vitamin C per cup, and several studies revealed that they may also assist with brain function. One study even found that people who consumed papaya extract for six months experienced a 40% decrease in oxidative stress. That’s one of the main contributing factors to cognitive decline.
Red Bell Peppers
Boasting an incredible 211% of the RDI of vitamin C per cup, red bell peppers are some of the best vitamin C foods. All bell peppers contain vitamin C, but the red ones contain the most. They are also rich in beta-carotene, which encourages healthier eyes, skin, and immune function.
Kale is a superstar among produce items. There’s nothing it can’t do! Kale is a cruciferous vegetable that packs about 89% of the RDI of vitamin C per cup. If you eat a cup of cooked kale, it offers 59% because heat lessens the nutritional content. Kale is also rich in vitamin K and antioxidants like zeaxanthin, lutein, and carotenoids.
This aromatic herb offers wonderful depth of flavor to your meals. According to research, thyme has more vitamin C than oranges, comparing it gram for gram. One ounce of fresh thyme offers 50% of the RDI of vitamin C. Even if you only sprinkle a little on your meals at a time, you add some vitamin C to your day. Thyme is also beneficial for the respiratory system.
When it comes to Brussels sprouts, people either love or hate them. They are like durian fruit in that way. They do, however, offer a diverse mix of nutrients, including vitamin C. One cup of cooked Brussels sprouts contains 107% of the RDI of vitamin C. Brussels sprouts also offer, fiber, protein, phosphorus, magnesium, iron, and vitamin B6.