In a world that gets distracted by all things fresh and flashy, we frequently forget about the tried-and-true. That’s unfortunate, because the simplest choice is often the right one when it comes to being proactive with your health. Take Vitamin C, for example. Vitamin C and is an effective antioxidant that helps to protect proteins, lipids, carbohydrates from damage by free radicals that occur both during normal cell metabolism and through exposure to toxins.1 This nutrient can also regenerate other antioxidants, including Vitamin E.2 More than half a century of research has unveiled the power of vitamin C to support various aspects of the immune system, particularly immune cell function. Here are some good reasons to stock up on Vitamin C.
On the surface
While we often forget about it, the skin is an important part of the immune system. As a barrier, healthy, intact skin helps to block entry to pathogens such as bacteria, viruses and toxins. Vitamin C is important because we need it to make collagen.3 We also see the importance of this nutrient when we consider the Vitamin C deficiency disease – scurvy. Symptoms of scurvy include bleeding gums, bruising and impaired wound healing.4 While regular hand-washing will protect your health, Vitamin C will help protect your skin!
Vitamin C also shines when it comes to keeping your immune cells in top shape. For example, white blood cells help to fight infection by killing microbes, by identifying viruses and bacteria and producing appropriate antibodies.5 White blood cells hoard Vitamin C, possibly as protection against free radical damage.6 In other words, Vitamin C may not be all that flashy, but it is an important foundation vitamin to support your immune system.
Are you getting enough?
Although Vitamin C is plentiful in fruits and vegetables, studies suggest that many people in North America don’t consume an adequate amount of this nutrient to meet their needs.7 One reason for deficiencies is that, as a water-soluble nutrient, our bodies can’t store Vitamin C to save for a rainy day. Instead, we need to be sure to consume enough of it daily. Complicating matters, factors such as cigarette smoking, environmental pollution, infection1 or low-level chronic inflammation8 can easily use up dietary Vitamin C.
Vitamin C may not come with bells and whistles, but it has an impressive research pedigree for supporting immune system health – which might explain why you hear about it every cold & flu season. Be sure to add Vitamin C-rich citrus, peppers and seasonings like paprika to the menu. Another way to ensure you’re getting enough Vitamin C is with Progressive’s comprehensive Vitamin C Complex. It provides isolated sources of Vitamin C for increased potency as well as whole food sources for their natural balance and bioavailability. Plus, the plant-based digestive support of papaya and black pepper extract increases the absorption and maximize the health-promoting properties of the entire formula. Fads come and go, but Vitamin C has staying power!
Learn more from Progressive Nutritional.
- Vitamin C. Linus Pauling Institute. (2023, January 3). Retrieved January 12, 2023.
- Deshmukh, Aarti & Kim, Beom Soo. (2019). Chitosan-Vitamin C Nanoparticles. KSBB Journal. 34.
- DePhillipo NN, Aman ZS, Kennedy MI, Begley JP, Moatshe G, LaPrade RF. Efficacy of Vitamin C Supplementation on Collagen Synthesis and Oxidative Stress After Musculoskeletal Injuries: A Systematic Review. Orthop J Sports Med. 2018 Oct 25.
- Scurvy: Symptoms, causes & treatment. Cleveland Clinic. (n.d.). Retrieved January 12, 2023.
- White blood cells: What are they, Normal Ranges, Role & Function. Cleveland Clinic. (n.d.). Retrieved January 12, 2023.
- Carr, A., & Maggini, S. (2017). Vitamin C and Immune Function. Nutrients, 9(11), 1211.
- Government of Canada, S. C. (2017, July 12). Health reports vitamin C status of Canadian adults: Findings from the 2012/2013 Canadian health measures Survey Health reports vitamin C status of Canadian adults: Findings from the 2012/2013 Canadian health measures survey. Vitamin C status of Canadian adults: Findings from the 2012/2013 Canadian Health Measures Survey. Retrieved January 12, 2023.
- Inflammation. Linus Pauling Institute. (2023, January 3). Retrieved January 12, 2023.