In fact, pretty much all living organisms on this planet make their own vitamin C except most bats, all guinea pigs, and certain primates, birds and fish. And of course us humans. We have to get our vitamin C through the foods we eat and supplements we take.
So what happens when we don’t get enough vitamin C in our diets? Very bad things.
You may have remembered the stories taught in school about European explorers during the 14th and 15th centuries who started dying in very large numbers of a horrific and mysterious disease when they were out at sea. These sailors would develop brittle bones that broke ridiculously easy, would suddenly start bleeding out of certain orifices and their teeth would fall out. And then they would die. That was scurvy. Once doctors figured out what was going on and that this “mysterious” disease was nothing more than a vitamin C deficiency, sailors started loading potatoes and limes onto their boats.
We Used to Make Vitamin C
You might be surprised to learn that human beings used to make their own vitamin C, but somewhere along our lineage we lost the ability. How did we lose it? Why did we lose it? We still have the gene, named GULO, to synthesize vitamin C but somehow that gene became broken through years and years (and years and years and years) of mutations.
We may never know why evolution decided we should rely on fruits and vegetables for vitamin C instead of make our own. The important thing is that we do mak...
... middle of paper ...
...ms of vitamin C per cup! That’s way more than an orange and five time the recommended daily intake.
Kale has become a darling among the juicing community because it is loaded with so many beneficial nutrients, and when you juice it, you usually double or triple the amount. But even if you use this leafy green as a base for your salads, you still get more vitamin C than an orange, with two cups providing 150 milligrams.
Okay, so to be fair to the orange, a cup of strawberries has about the same amount of vitamin C, it’s just not many people know that and so many people prefer strawberries to oranges. If this is you, eat up!
You’ve always known vitamin C was good for you, but not this good. If you suspect you haven’t been getting enough in your diet, it’s time to remedy that and eat more fruits and veggies that are rich in this beneficial nutrient.
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