14 Best Benefits of Vitamin C for Skin, Hair and Health – Vitamins and minerals are essential for our overall well being. One of them is Vitamin C. Also known as ascorbic acid, there are many benefits of Vitamin C for our health and beauty. Here is a post dedicated to the wonderful benefits of Vitamin C for Skin, Hair and Health. Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin which can be found in abundance in a number of foods. Since human body cannot synthesize this vitamin, its important to get our daily dose of the same from external sources. Vitamin C is an antioxidant and very important for our immunity system. It also provides protection against heart diseases, eye diseases as well as premature aging of the skin.
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Before we start discussing about the amazing benefits of vitamin C for skin, hair and health, lets first check out some important facts about vitamin C, and how to know if you are suffering from Vitamin C deficiency.
Symptoms of Vitamin C Deficiency
We have already mentioned that our body cannot make Vitamin C on its own, neither can it store the same. Hence, its very important that we eat plenty of fruits and vegetable that contain Vitamin C to our daily diet. Vitamin C plays a very important role to maintain the health of our body’s connective tissues, and it also acts as an anti oxidant to fight off the free radicals and keep our immunity system healthy. Since our body doesn’t produce Vitamin C, so, its not uncommon to suffer from Vitamin C deficiency. How would you know that your body is suffering from lack of Vitamin C? Well, listed below are the signs and symptoms of Vitamin C deficiency-
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- Swollen gums
- Bleeding gums
- Inflammation of the gums (also called gingivitis)
- Slow wound healing
- Dry and splitting hair
- Dry and red spots on the skin
- Rough and dry skin
- Weak immunity
- Digestive Disorders
- Swollen and painful joints
- Possible weight gain
If not taken notes immediately and treated on time, long term deficiency of Vitamin C might results in –
- High blood pressure
- Narrowing of arteries due to plaque build up
- Certain cancers
Top Food Sources of Vitamin C
Lets find out what are the best food sources of Vitamin C.
- Guava – 1 fruit contains 377 mg (over 628% DV)
- Black Currant – 1 cup contains 203 mg (over 338% DV)
- Red pepper – 1 cup raw red pepper contains 190 mg (over 317% DV)
- Kiwi – 1 piece contains 164 mg (273% DV)
- Orange – 1 large orange contains 82 mg (149% DV)
- Strawberries – a cup contains 89.4 mg (149%DV)
- Papaya – A cup of papaya slices contains 86.5 mg (over 144% DV)
- Green peppers – 1 cup chopped, raw green peppers contain 120 mg (200% DV)
- Broccoli – 1 cup raw broccoli contains 81.2 mg (135% DV)
- Kale – 1 cup raw kale contains 80 mg (134% DV)
- Pineapple – 1 cup fresh pineapple contains 78.9 mg )over 131% DV)
- Brussels sprouts – a cup of raw brussels sprouts contain 74.8 mg (125% DV)
- Parsley – a cup of fresh parsley contains 79.8 mg (over 133%)
- Grapefruit – a cup of grapefruit contains 71.8 mg (120% DV)
- Cauliflower – a cup of raw, chopped cauliflower contains 46.4 mg (over 77% DV)
- Peas – a cup of raw peas contains 58 mg (97% DV)
- Mango – a cup of mango contains 45.7 mg (76% DV)
Experts suggest to add 2-3 sources of Vitamin C on your daily diet, as this will help to maintain the optimum level of Vitamin C in our body.
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Recommended Daily Intake of Vitamin C
For adults, over the age of 19, the recommended daily allowance of Vitamin C is –
- Men – 90 mg per day
- Women – 75 mg per day
- Pregnant women – 85 mg per day
- Breastfeeding women – 120 mg per day.
For infants, till the age of 12 months, the required amount of Vitamin C (per day) is –
- Infants 0-6 months old – 40 mg per day
- Infants 7-12 months old – 50 mg per day
Individual, from 1 year to 18 years old, the recommended daily intake of Vitamin C is –
- Toddlers 1-3 years old – 15 mg per day
- Children 4-8 years old – 25 mg per day
- Children 9-13 years old – 45 mg per day
- Male teens 14-18 years old – 75 mg per day
- Female teens 14-18 years old – 65 mg per day
14 Best Benefits of Vitamin C for Skin, Hair and Health
Now that we are quite clear about Vitamin C, its food sources, recommended daily intake and the symptoms of vitamin C deficiency, lets find out all the wonderful benefits of Vitamin C for skin, hair and health.
Benefits of Vitamin C for Skin
1. Anti Aging Benefits of Vitamin C
This is the most important benefits of Vitamin C for our skin. It stimulates the production of collagen and collagen is responsible for keeping our skin plump and young. The amount of collagen in our body starts to reduce by the time we reach our late 20s. As we age, the situation worsens and we start experiencing saggy skin and wrinkles. Vitamin C, according to clinical studies, when applied topically, helps to increase collagen production. Fibroblast is the most common skin cell that produces collagen. Vitamin C stimulates fibroblast activity and thus increases the amount of collagen in our skin. Application of vitamin C serum on regular basis helps to keep the skin youthful and firm.
How to use vitamin C in anti aging
- Put in the blender half cup chopped raw green apple (rich source of vitamin C), two tbsp chia seeds and 2 tbsp honey. Blend together until it forms a smooth paste. Add some water if the paste becomes too thick. Let it rest for 5-6 minutes and then spread a thick layer of it all over the face. Gently massage in circular motion and let it stay on the skin for 15-20 minutes. Wash off with plain water.
- Avocado is another good source of Vitamin C which is beneficial to fight off aging. Mash half of an avocado and mix that with a tbsp uncooked oatmeal. Apply the mixture on the face, massage a little and further, let it sit on the skin for 15-20 minutes. Rinse off with luke warm water and reapply once in every 2-3 days.
2. Faster Healing of Wounds
Next comes this one on our list of benefits of Vitamin C for skin. According to studies, vitamin C is beneficial to accelerate wound healing. The anti oxidant Benefits of Vitamin C has been found to help heal burn. It can reduce the requirement of ventilation for patients with severe burns. The main reason being vitamin C is effective for new tissue growth which works great to heal burns and wounds.
3. Cures Stretch Marks
We have already discussed that vitamin C is capable of boosting collagen production. Collagen is very important to improve the stretching ability of our skin. When there is enough collagen in our skin, it is less likely snap and remain firm even after going through stretching. However, when the collagen level decreases, if the skin is stretched too much, it causes scars in the middle layers of the skin. These scars appear on the top layer of the skin in the form of stretch marks. Therefore, collagen is needed to prevent stretch marks. Stretch marks mostly are caused by sudden weight gain or lose and during pregnancy. Topical application of vitamin C lets you fight the decline of collagen level in the skin and avoid stretch marks.
How to use vitamin C to get rid of stretch marks
Lemon juice is one of the best natural sources of vitamin C. It is one of the most effective natural remedies to remove stretch marks. Check out below how you can use lemon juice to get rid of stretch marks. For more remedies, read 19 Best Home Remedies to Remove Stretch Marks.
- Make a paste by mixing a tbsp of baking soda and some lemon juice. Apply this on the stretch marks affected areas and massage gently. Cover the areas with a plastic wrap. Let it stay on the skin for 20-30 minutes, take off the wrap and then wash the areas with luke warm water. Follow up with a moisturizer. Repeat every day.
- Squeeze out juice from half of a lemon and add one tbsp each of raw honey and olive oil to it. Also add some powdered sugar and mix together to make a paste. Apply the paste on the areas where you have stretch marks and gently massage in circular motion for 1-2 minutes. Keep it on the skin for another 10-12 minutes. Finally wash it off with luke warm water. Repeat twice or thrice in a week.
4. Protects Skin From Sun Damage
Here comes one of the most amazing skin benefits of Vitamin C. Vitamin C is a very powerful anti oxidant. It fights off the free radicals and protect our skin from UV damage. It has been found that the formation of free radicals is increased by the UV radiation of sun. The free radicals can make the sun burn worse and even can cause cancer. The anti oxidant benefits of Vitamin C help in reducing the formation of free radicals and protect our skin from age spots and sun spots. Studies have found that UV exposure can decrease the level of vitamin C in the skin. Hence topical application of vitamin C is important. Use a vitamin C serum underneath your sunscreen for complete protection from sun exposure.
5. Skin Hydrating Benefits of Vitamin C
Studies have shown that deficiency of vitamin C can cause dry and rough skin. We know that collagen is responsible for keeping our skin smooth and soft. Decreased level of collagen can damage the skin texture and make it rough and dry. Since vitamin C is capable of boosting collagen production, it significantly helps to improve skin texture. Topical application of vitamin C serums help to get rid of skin roughness and dryness over time.
6. Skin Brightening Benefits of Vitamin C
Topical application of vitamin C has been found to be quite beneficial to face marks and spots and brighten the complexion. It works by inhibiting the over production of melanin. Vitamin C actually reduce how much melanin is produced by the melanocyte skin cells. It has the ability to inhibit tyrosinase enzyme, which is required to produce melanin. Thus it controls the activities of melanocyte skin cells and decrease the level of melanin in the skin. Melanin is responsible for skin discoloration, hence less amount of melanin means clearer skin.
How to use vitamin C to brighten the complexion
Topical application of natural ingredients, which are rich in vitamin C, is beneficial to improve the overall complexion of our skin.
- Take one lemon and cut it in half. Extract the juice from one half of a lemon and apply it directly on the scars and marks with the help of a cotton ball. Leave it on the skin for 10-15 minutes and wash off with plain water. Repeat daily.
- Alternatively, mix together one tbsp fresh yogurt and juice of one lemon. Apply the resultant mixture all over the face and keep it on the skin for 15-20 minutes. Wash off with fresh water. Repeat twice in a week.
- Here is a vitamin C peel of mask recipe for clear skin, using all natural ingredients. Grate one large tomato and extract the juice from grated tomatoes. In a bowl, take one and half tbsp of tomato juice and 2 tsp of gelatin powder to it. Microwave the mixture to dissolve the gelatin powder. Furthermore, add one tsp of honey and some lemon juice to the tomato and gelatin mix. Combine all the ingredients and apply a layer of the mixture on the face, with the help of a face pack brush. Wait till it gets dry naturally. Gently peel it off in the upward direction. Wash the face with fresh, cool water and apply a moisturizer.
- Prepare a DIY Vitamin C face scrub by combining two tbsp of orange juice, two tsp of lemon juice and a tsp of sugar. Apply that on the face and massage in circular motion to exfoliate and remove the dirt and impurities from the skin. When the sugar granules start to dissolve, wash off the scrub with fresh, cool water. Both orange juice and lemon juice are rich sources of vitamin C, which makes this scrub a great one for complexion boosting.
Benefits of Vitamin C for Hair
Hope you enjoyed reading about the vitamin C benefits for our skin. Lets find out what are the benefits of vitamin C for our hair.
7. Anti Dandruff Benefits of Vitamin C
Dandruff can be caused by bacterial infection on the scalp. Vitamin C helps in fighting off the bacteria on the scalp and eliminate dandruff as well as other impurities that clog the hair follicles and boost new hair growth. Vitamin C also has hydrating properties that can heal dry and itchy scalp.
How to use vitamin C to get rid of dandruff
Using natural ingredients rich in vitamin C is very beneficial to eliminate dandruff and get healthy hair.
- Make a hair pack by mixing two tbsp of yogurt, one tbsp of lemon juice and a tsp of organic honey as well. Apply this hair mask all over the scalp and let it sit for 20-30 minutes. Wash off with a mild shampoo. Repeat 2-3 times in a week to get rid of dandruff.
- Alternatively, combine together two tbsp each of amla juice and lemon juice to make a hair mask. Apply it on the scalp with the help of a cotton ball. Let it stay for 30 minutes and rinse off. Reapply twice or thrice in a week.
- Add two tbsp fresh lemon juice to equal amount of aloe vera gel and mix together. Apply this on the scalp, massage gently and keep it on for 15 minutes. Rinse off with a mild shampoo. Repeat twice in a week.
8. Prevents Premature Graying of Hair
Next on our list of vitamin C benefits for hair comes this one. Vitamin C has anti oxidant benefits, which fight off the free radicals and prevent them from causing any damage to hair and scalp including premature graying of hair.
How to use vitamin C to prevent premature graying of hair
Here are few remedies with natural ingredients containing vitamin C that help to reverse the effect of premature graying of hair.
- Mix together a tbsp each of amla pulp and lemon juice. Apply the resultant mixture on the scalp and massage gently. Keep it on for an hour. Wash it off. Do this 2-3 times in a week.
- Boil a handful of curry leaves to half cup of coconut oil until the leaves turn black in color. Remove from the heat and wait til it reaches room temperature. Separate the oil and apply that on the scalp and hair. Massage thoroughly and keep it on for 30-40 minutes. Remove it all with a mild shampoo. Repeat twice or thrice in a week.
- Grate one onion and extract the juice from it. Directly apply the juice on the scalp and allow it to stay there for 30-45 minutes. Rinse off with a mild shampoo. Reapply twice in a week.
- Remove the seeds and crush few amla. Add water to crushed amla and make a paste. Apply the amla paste on the scalp and massage for even distribution. Keep it on the scalp for 30 minutes and wash off. Repeat twice or thrice in a week.
9. Boosts Hair Growth
Vitamin C plays a major role in boosting our hair growth. Collagen decrease in our body is one of the main causes for lack of hair growth. Vitamin C can boost collagen production and leads to healthy hair growth. Taking vitamin C supplements has been found beneficial to improve hair growth. Free radicals also can halt hair growth. The anti oxidant benefits of vitamin C neutralize the harmful effect of free radicals and induce new hair growth.
How to use vitamin C to boost hair growth
- Mix together some lemon juice and coconut oil or olive oil. Apply the mixture on the hair and scalp, massage thoroughly and let it sit for 30-45 minutes. Wash off with a mild shampoo. Repeat this once or twice in a week.
- Make a paste by adding some lemon juice to amla powder. Apply all over the scalp. Let it sit for 20-30 minutes and wash off.
10. Fights Hair Loss
Hair loss is a common problem for both male and female, and let me tell you, Vitamin C can help you to deal with the situation. Often, lack of iron in our body can cause severe hair loss and Vitamin C is known for its ability to increase the amount of iron absorbed by our body. This way, vitamin C helps to recover iron deficiency and stops hair loss. Also, the anti oxidant benefits of Vitamin C play a vital role in combating hair loss, due to the damaging effect of free radicals.
Benefits of Vitamin C for Health
After discussing about Vitamin C benefits for skin and hair, lets now shift our focus to the health benefits of Vitamin C.
11. Treats Common Cold
Vitamin C strengthens our immunity system and make our body resistant to common cold and cough. Moreover, its anti viral properties fight off the virus and infections and keep our body healthy.
12. Controls Blood Sugar Level
Next comes this one on our list of health benefits of vitamin C. Studies have found that regular intake of Vitamin C can help to regulate blood sugar level in those with type 2 diabetes. Another study has found that Vitamin C helps with insulin mechanism and facilitate diabetes treatment.
13. Combats Strokes
Vitamin C is very beneficial in fighting off strokes which is a type of cardiovascular disease. It helps in maintaining the right blood pressure level which is essential for a healthy heart and prevent strokes.
14. Might Prevent Cancer
Several studies have found that regular and right amount of vitamin C intake can help with decreased risk of cancer. The powerful anti oxidant properties of Vitamin C fight off various types of cancer, including cancer of the lungs, mouth, throat, vocal chords, colon, rectum, stomach as well as esophagus.
These were some of the top benefits of Vitamin C for skin, hair and health. Did you find this article helpful? Let us know below in the comments 🙂