There are plenty of health myths about Vitamin C, especially as cold and flu season hits much of the country. A lot of people believe that it’s actually a cure for the common cold, but researchers have mostly debunked that.
But it’s believed to have some health benefits for your immune system and helps fight heart disease and prenatal health problems.
If you don’t get enough, you can contract scurvy (just like pirates hundreds of years ago!) Symptoms of scurvy, by the way, could include bleeding gums, fatigue, small red or purple spots on your skin and depression.
Since your body is unable to produce Vitamin C on its own, or store it, it’s vital to eat foods rich in it. (Most recommendations call for the daily intake to be 90 milligrams.)
When most people think of foods with Vitamin C, oranges come to the top of the mind. And they are a great source, with one medium-sized orange providing 70 mg.
These easy-to-find fruits could give you an instant boost, too: a medium kiwi (71 mg), a papaya (88 mg) or a cup of strawberries (89 mg).
And don’t forget the veggies! A cup of bell peppers (190 mg), broccoli (81 mg), cooked tomatoes (55 mg) or cooked kale (53 mg) can help out, too.
But there are plenty of foods out there that pack a big Vitamin C punch. They’re just a little less obvious:
• Healthline touts the Kakadu plum, an Australian native superfood that has 481 mg in just one plum. They say it’s the food with the highest concentration of vitamin C, with 5,300 mg per 100 grams.
• Red acerola cherries pack an amazing amount of Vitamin C into a half cup, with 822 mg, which is 913% of the daily value.
• And if you’re looking beyond fruits, a green chili pepper has 109 mg of Vitamin C.
• Besides being a great seasoning, one ounce of thyme has 45 mg.
How much Vitamin C do you need?
Here is the recommended daily Vitamin C intake, according to the National Institutes of Health’s Office of Dietary Supplements.
• Birth to 6 months — 40 milligrams
• Infants, 7 to 12 months — 50 mg
• Children, 1 to 3 years — 15 mg
• Kids, 4 to 8 years — 25 mg
• Children, 9 to 13 years — 45 mg
• Teen boys, 14 to 18 years — 75 mg
• Teen girls, 14 to 18 years — 65 mg
• Adult males — 90 mg
• Adult females — 75 mg
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