Are you getting enough Vitamin C in your diet?
Did you know that almost 7% of women and 10% of men are vitamin C deficient? What signs should you watch for that you’re not getting enough?
- You get sick often
It is an antioxidant, which protects cells from oxidative stress and helps your body fight infections.
This antioxidant vitamin also helps with wound healing and supports healthy collagen production. Collagen is a protein that helps keep your joints healthy and your skin firm and wrinkle-free. If you’re catching every respiratory infection and virus that comes around, you might need more vitamin C in your diet.
Eating fruits and vegetables are the best source your body requires. It cannot be stored so you need to get some in your diet daily.
- You’re tired all the time
One possible sign that you need more is fatigue. If you’re feeling tired all the time and haven’t changed anything in your diet or lifestyle recently, it may be due to low levels of vitamin C. It can be the early stages of scurvy in the body.
However, there are many causes of fatigue. If you’re feeling tired, see your physician for an exam and bloodwork to determine the cause of your tiredness and whether you need more.
- You’re gums are bleeding
It is a powerful antioxidant that can help prevent gum disease. People low in vitamin C are likely to experience bleeding gums. Gum bleeding can also be a sign of scurvy.
If you have bleeding gums, eat more vitamin C-rich foods but also see your dentist to rule out gum disease.
- Your joints ache
Joint pain is one of the most common signs of deficiency. It can affect any joint, but it’s most common in the knees and hips.
What causes joint aches? It helps build healthy collagen for joint support. When you don’t consume enough, your joints may suffer. Symptoms include painful joints when you move, stiffness, swelling and bruising around your joints, and aching muscles or tendons close to your joints.
- Skin changes
If you have a deficiency, you may have some skin changes that are easy to spot.
The most common symptoms of low vitamin C levels in the body include
- Red or discolored patches on your skin
- Bruising easily, especially in places where there are normally no bruises (like the insides of elbows)
- Dryness and cracking of the corners of your mouth
These symptoms usually go away when you increase your intake.
You can get more vitamin C from foods like citrus fruits and bell peppers, or from vitamin C supplements.
If you notice any of these symptoms, a deficiency may be at play. Even if you don’t have any of these signs or symptoms, make sure you’re getting enough food by eating plenty of vitamin C-rich foods.