A Better Way to Get Vitamin C (Besides Orange Juice!)


By: , SparkPeople Blogger
  :  65 comments   :  86,913 Views

With cold and flu season in full swing, most of us are trying to do all we can to avoid catching one of the nasty viruses floating around. Some swear by vitamin C-rich orange juice for warding off disease. Although the evidence about vitamin C's illness-fighting powers is conflicting, there's no doubt that it's still a good nutrient to consume. Since the body does not produce vitamin C, you must obtain it from outside sources to create and repair skin cells and fight off the effects of damaging free radicals. If you eat your veggies, though, it's not hard to reach your daily quota, since all fruits and vegetables contain vitamin C to some degree. That's right; orange juice isn't your only option for getting this important nutrient! Which type of produce will deliver the highest amount of vitamin C per serving: Red bell peppers, broccoli, kiwi, or oranges?
The Winner: Red Bell Pepper!

One serving of red bell pepper delivers a whopping 190 mg of vitamin C! Broccoli contains 132 mg, kiwi boasts 137 mg, and oranges come in last with 83 mg. According to the National Institutes of Health, the daily recommended value for vitamin C is 90 mg for men and 75 mg for women, so one serving of red bell pepper will more than cover your needs. The next time you feel a cold coming on, munch on some peppers instead of reaching for the orange juice! (In case you're wondering, 8 ounces of orange juice has 137 mg of vitamin C—but you're better off choosing a whole fruit, veggie, or mean green juice instead for more fiber and less sugar.)

What's your favorite way to get vitamin C? How to you ward off illness in the winter?

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    yay!! I eat red peppers about four times a week....in salads usually but also in stir fries.....I love them....... - 1/20/2013   5:56:52 AM
  • 14
    That's good to know about peppers. I eat them frequently. Also I didn't know that ALL fruits and veggies have vita min C. Good to know. I knew about broccoli, but always figured the citrus fruits were the big winners. - 1/20/2013   5:18:46 AM
    Some of us do not care for eating bell peppers; especially raw, which would be best for the nutrients. - 1/20/2013   1:07:18 AM
  • 12
    Yay! Fajitas! : ) Yum! - 1/20/2013   12:14:55 AM
  • 11
    I eat lots of fruits and veggies and less sugar, sleep more, exercise outside are my way of staying healthy in the winter. - 1/20/2013   12:05:51 AM
  • 10
    I don't mind any of those vegetables but I used to eat the odd wild rose hip when I was a kid. Don't know how much they had in them but I know that they had some. Funny how everyone thinks oranges have the most. Clever marketing? - 1/19/2013   11:54:22 PM
  • 9
    I take a vitamin c supplement but I also eat tons of raw fruit n veggies :-D - 1/19/2013   11:00:30 PM
    wow, I love to eat red peppers raw or with a little low-fat dressing - 1/19/2013   8:43:56 PM
    For me, it's red pepper hummus (homemade, with no olive oil and a reduced amount of tahini for more reasonable fat numbers).
    - 1/19/2013   5:03:06 PM
  • 6
    Eating an anti-inflammatory diet means that peppers are out for me - but love the broccoli! How much C in lemons? - 1/19/2013   4:30:32 PM
  • 5
    I like to drink a warm glass of water with the juice of half of a lemon and honey in the morning. Thats a great source of vitamin C. - 1/19/2013   12:38:15 PM
  • 4
    I had no idea red bell peppers were the Vit C food of choice. Awesome. They have become a staple food for me this past year :). - 1/19/2013   12:04:15 PM
  • 3
    Favourite vegetable around our house is Broccoli. red peppers are next but Broccoli costs less. I like the stems and never throw them away unless they are really woody. I keep them for the STOCK pot. Our County is considered epidemic. I take ESTER-C 1000 twice daily and had my flu shots for 40 years and we still got very sick. Coughing since November 12th and still coughing . Pat in Maine. - 1/19/2013   8:41:44 AM
  • 2
    I use "Emergen-C" fizzy drink mix - it has 1,000mg. I watched a documentary called "FoodMatters" and it talked about mega-doses of vitamin C actually killing viruses.It also helps with iron absorption. - 1/19/2013   7:16:02 AM
  • 1
    I love red peppers ! I eat peppers all the time. I also eat tons of tomatoes, sweet potatoes, onions, oranges, etc. vitamin C is the one anti oxidant I get plenty of in my diet. - 1/19/2013   6:21:48 AM

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