What are the Best Sources of Vitamin C?

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Vitamin C comes in a variety of shapes, sizes and flavors, but the best sources of vitamin C are not the most common. Although the orange might be the best-known vitamin C food, it is not the most potent source of vitamin C. Healthy daily doses of this vital nutrient come from both fruits and vegetables, along with vitamin C supplements. Some of the best natural sources of vitamin C include the acerola cherry, mango, peach, strawberry, broccoli and tomoato.

The fruit offering the biggest shot of vitamin C is the little-known acerola cherry, also called the Barbados cherry, Puerto Rican cherry and West Indian cherry. The juice from this bitter red berry boasts 1,600 milligrams of vitamin C per 3.5 ounces (100 g). That’s more than 10 times the amount of vitamin C found in orange juice. A few additional fruit sources of vitamin C offer more than 100 milligrams per 3.5 ounces (100 g), including guava, lychee and mango. Other powerful vitamin C fruits include kiwi, peach, papaya, strawberry and cantaloupe.


The most potent vegetable sources of vitamin C come from the pepper family, with hot chili peppers topping the list at more than 240 milligrams of vitamin C per 3.5 ounces (100 g). Other potent vitamin C vegetables include red bell peppers, broccoli, green peppers, cabbages, tomatoes and Brussels sprouts. Veggie and tomato juices provide plenty of vitamin C also, but they tend to be high in sodium, so they are not the best choice for anyone watching their salt intake.

Also known as ascorbic acid, vitamin C is taken as a daily supplement by many people. Nutritionists and medical professionals, however, recommend healthy vitamin C foods as the most efficient way to consume vitamin C. It is recommended that adult males consume about 90 milligrams of vitamin C each day and that adult women consume about 75 milligrams daily. Vitamin C helps the body fight infection, has anti-inflammatory properties and can help prevent gum disease, joint problems, cancer, cardiovascular disease and some chronic illnesses.


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Post 3

Of all vitamin C rich foods, berries are my favorite. All berries have vitamin C -- strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and cranberries. I love them all and I eat lots of berries when they are in season.

I like eating dark fruits with vitamin C. Dark fruits are said to have more antioxidants. For example, pomegranate is a great fruit. It rich in antioxidants and vitamin C. I drink the bottled juice sometimes, but I also buy it fresh in winter when I find it at the supermarket. It's kind of difficult to separate the seeds, but it's yummy, perfectly sweet and sour.

Has anyone noticed that many vitamin C rich fruits appear in fall and winter? I think it's nature's way of protecting us from illness.

Post 2

@ddljohn-- There are many vitamin C food sources but they are most beneficial when they are eaten fresh. I don't think that processed fruits and vegetables have much vitamin C left in them. I'm sure that you will get more vitamin C if you eat a whole orange in the morning rather than processed fruit juice.

Post 1

Since I've learned that papaya has 200% more vitamin C than oranges, I've started buying papaya juice from the health food store instead of orange juice. I like having a glass of juice in the morning and after workouts. I think juice with vitamin C keeps my immune system strong.

I usually don't eat papayas but I like the juice. It's harder to find than orange juice and it costs a little bit more. But I think it's worth it for the vitamin C content.

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