One of the most overlooked daily health essentials is Vitamin C intake. Many will have a glass of orange juice a few times a week and claim they got their adequate dosage. But we need to take a closer look at the health risks of Vitamin C deficiency.
Symptoms of Vitamin C Deficiency
Before we talk about Vitamin C deficiency we must understand the role that this essential vitamin plays in our bodies. Since it cannot be created by our bodies we must ensure we get Vitamin C through nutrition and supplements (I’ll talk more about Vitamin C supplements later).
Let’s move on to the symptoms of Vitamin C deficiency. Many of us know this powerful vitamin as a key to preventing sickness. What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you have a cold or flu symptoms? We typically load up on Vitamin C supplements.
However, there’s more that goes on when our bodies are lacking this essential vitamin. Below is a list of common symptoms of Vitamin C deficiency.
♦ Weakened immune system (easily get sick)
♦ Joint pain
♦ Dry skin
♦ Gum problems (swollen or bleeding gums)
♦ Upset stomach/digestive problems
♦ Lack of energy
♦ Slower healing and recovery
Health Risks of Vitamin C Deficiency
With the above symptoms there’s are inherent health risks of Vitamin C deficiency. In fact, this can lead to some serious health issues down the road if neglected. It’s like anything else; the more you prolong giving your body what it needs to function, the greater the potential impact and chance of long term effects.
Below is a list of the potential health risks of Vitamin C deficiency:
- High blood pressure
- Risk of stroke becomes greater
- Raised potential for certain cancers
- Skin disorders
- Mouth/gum disease
Foods High in Vitamin C
So how do we decrease the health risks of Vitamin C deficiency? It’s said by some that the best way to get your daily Vitamin C intake is through food and nutrition. There are several foods you can eat that are loaded with essentials vitamins and nutrients.
It should be no surprise that the bulk of foods high in Vitamin C are fruits and vegetables. Below is a list of foods that should give you an adequate dose:
- Oranges (and other citrus fruits)
- Bell peppers
- Green, leafy vegetables (spinach, broccoli)
Vitamin C Supplements
Lastly, I want to talk about Vitamin C supplements. I’ve always been an avid user of multi-vitamins. Obviously Vitamin C is included here. But recently I’m starting to rethink this supplement strategy.
Whereas multi-vitamins seemingly contain proper dosages of most all essential vitamins and nutrients, there are some ingredients that may compete with one another. Thus, you may be getting an adequate amount of some but not others.
Vitamins should be taken on an individual basis. In other words, you have to assess your body’s needs. And that may be different from others. Men, for example, may need higher doses of Vitamin D to support healthy hormone levels. Those prone to illness may need more antioxidants. Most everyone requires an essential daily dose of Vitamin C for all of the reasons listed above. So it may be best to take vitamins individually rather than a multivitamin.
Importance of Vitamin C
It’s clear that Vitamin C is essential to our health and necessary for our bodies to function properly. There are both short term and long term health risks of Vitamin C deficiency.
One final note, being an avid weight trainer it’s especially important. As I mentioned earlier, Vitamin C plays a vital role in joint health, recovery, and strengthening the immune system (aka you can’t workout if you’re getting sick all the time). You can read more about my preferred Vitamin C supplement here.
Train with Passion,