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Vitamin C: All About Ascorbic Acid

 Vitamin C: All About Ascorbic Acid

Vitamin C, or ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin that is present in large amounts in the body. This person does not know how to manufacture or store it, it is necessary to bring enough of it daily to stay healthy. Vitamin C, known as a powerful antioxidant, has many roles in the body.

Vitamin C properties:

It is called ascorbic acid

It is found in fruits and vegetables

Helps fight oxidation and strengthen the immune system

Works synergistically with Vitamin E, Selenium and Zinc

Promotes iron absorption

Why eat foods rich in vitamin C?

Vitamin C: Roles and Benefits in the Body


Vitamin C has the power of a powerful antioxidant. Together with other antioxidant molecules such as vitamin E, selenium and zinc, it neutralizes excess free radicals in the body. Therefore, ascorbic acid protects against oxidative stress and premature aging of cells. This antioxidant action is also involved in protecting the body from certain diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular disease or neurodegenerative diseases.

brain function

Vitamin C allows the production of neurotransmitters in the brain: dopamine, norepinephrine, adrenaline, etc. So it is necessary for the brain to function properly. In addition, its ability to fight oxidation can be beneficial in reducing the incidence of neurodegenerative diseases (Alzheimer's disease for example).

immune system

The concentration of vitamin C is especially important in cells that provide the body's immune defenses. In fact, it contributes to the production and regeneration of white blood cells and thus allows the body to defend itself against both internal and external pathogens.

Adverse effects of ascorbic acid

Consequences of Vitamin C deficiency

True vitamin C deficiency is responsible for scurvy. It is extremely rare these days in developed countries but can cause edema and bleeding that can cause death if not treated quickly. Vitamin C deficiency is more common and can lead to fatigue, general weakness, a tendency to get sick easily, or a loss of appetite.

Consequences of a vitamin C dose greater than 1000 mg

The maximum recommended dose of vitamin C is 1,000 mg in addition to the recommended amount, i.e. 1,100 mg in healthy adults. In addition to this dose, vitamin C can promote the formation of oxalate kidney stones, hemochromatosis or the development of digestive disorders (diarrhea, stomach cramps, etc.).

Interactions with other nutrients

Having foods rich in vitamin C during a meal increases the absorption of iron in the same meal. It is interesting to combine sources of vitamin C and iron.

Vitamin C works synergistically with Vitamin E, Selenium and Zinc and helps fight oxidation in the body.

Chemical properties

The molecular formula for vitamin C is C6H8O6, and its molar mass is 176.1241 g/mol. It is a water-soluble vitamin that is very sensitive to heat and light, hence its great fragility in the kitchen. It is found in the body in the form of ascorbic acid, sodium ascorbate, or calcium. Ascorbic acid is a reductive acid with high antioxidant potential.

Vitamin C is a highly active coenzyme factor involved in many metabolic reactions: hydroxylation, carnitine synthesis, collagen synthesis, etc.


Nutrient history

The name ascorbic acid comes from the Greek language and means "anti-scurvy", as scurvy is a disease associated with vitamin C deficiency whose symptoms have been known since the thirteenth century. Scientists did not realize until the eighteenth century AD the ability of lemon to treat diseases. In the 1930s, vitamin C was first synthesized by WN Haworth, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his pivotal discovery. Since then, the roles of vitamin C in the body are still the subject of interesting scientific discoveries.


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