The human body cannot synthesize Vitamin C.
Vitamin C Deficiency may affect the body’s ability to fight tumours
Vitamin C controls the activity of an enzyme that builds resistance
Since our body cannot synthesize it, we must derive it from food
Two new studies published in the Journals Nature and Cell show that a Vitamin C deficiency may affect your body’s ability to fight tumour development. For the study, researchers used a mice model. Since mice make vitamin C inside their bodies unlike humans, they had to first genetically engineer them to get their daily dose of Vitamin C from their food. Their findings revealed that mice with low vitamin C intake had a higher count of stem cells in their blood and bone marrow. Not just this, they also observed that these mice have lower resistance to tumours and a higher risk of developing leukemia.
The study further showed that on increasing the Vitamin C intake these mice were able to decrease the rate of spread of cancer. Through their study, researchers discovered that a certain enzyme called Tet2 controls a variety of processes within bone marrow and blood cells related to the production of new cells. Lack of vitamin C reduces the activity of this enzyme which promotes the development of leukemia.
The team also tested the same on human stem cells and found similar results. Vitamin C is an important nutrient that also acts as an antioxidant fighting disease-causing free radicals in the body. It protects our bones, helps in building our tissues and is an important factor in the absorption of iron.
Since the human body does not have the capacity to synthesize it, you must make sure that you get your daily dose. Here are five Vitamin C rich foods to incorporate in your diet.
1. Bell Peppers: These coloured peppers are one of the best sources of Vitamin C. A cup of bell peppers has nearly three times more Vitamin C than an orange.
2. Broccoli: This humble green vegetable is packed with Vitamin C. Remember that Vitamin C is a heat sensitive nutrient and therefore, you must just slightly saute the broccoli to retain its nutrition.
3. Papaya: Half a cup of papaya can give you enough of the vitamin for your entire day.
4. Tomatoes: They have plenty of Vitamin C and it is good to eat them raw in salads or sandwiches. Tomatoes are also heart-friendly.
5. Strawberries: These sweet and juicy fruits pack a whole lot of Vitamin C. Since Vitamin C is also a water soluble nutrients, it is important to derive it on a day to day basis from the food we eat.