Vitamin C written

The human body requires the essential nutrient – Vitamin C for the development as well as maintenance of blood vessels, cartilage, and scar tissue. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant. C vitamin is very important to build tissues, protect bones, and to absorb iron. A daily dose of vitamin C is required by the body as it is water-soluble and cannot be stored in the body.

The daily recommended required amount of vitamin C for adults is 40 mg.

Many commonly consumed food items provide vitamin C and about twenty of them which provide a significant amount of vitamin C are discussed below.

Highest Vitamin C sources

Citrus fruits

Many varieties of citrus fruits are found to contain significant amounts of vitamin C. Of the many, oranges, grapefruits and lemon are easily available and provide vitamin C. Oranges have 53.2 mg of vitamin C in 100 gm of fruit. This is equivalent to 89% of the recommended daily amount of vitamin C. Likewise, the same weight of grapes gives 114% and lemon, 74%.

How to consume?

You can eat all these fruits as a whole as pulps or in the form of juice.

Bell pepper

There are three types of peppers known as yellow bell peppers, sweet red peppers, and sweet green peppers. All three have a high percentage of DV. A large size yellow bell pepper of 186 gm. weight has 341.3 mg or 569% DV and the with the same weight while sweet red pepper 349% and sweet green peppers 220%.

How to consume? Bell peppers are used in various side dishes and gravies. You can also use them in their raw form in salads and as a garnish.

Broccoli

Broccoli contains a high quantity of vitamin C measuring 149% DV per 100 gm. Besides providing C vitamin broccoli has high fiber content and can prevent weight-related problems.

How to consume? Broccoli is generally consumed water cooked but it is always better to consume it half cooked. Broccoli loses a lot of its nutrition value when cooked fully.

Papaya

Every 100 gm. of papaya contains 60.9 mg equivalent to 102% DV of vitamin C. Papaya is not only a good source of vitamin C but also smoothen the skin, give relief in sinus problems, and wards off bloating when used as a desert.

How to consume? Papaya fruit is consumed raw after peeling the skin and removing the seeds inside. You can also consume it in the form of juice. Papaya jams and jellies are also available which can be given to your little ones.

Papaya
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Strawberry

Every 100 gm. of strawberries provides 58.8 mg which is 98% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin C. Strawberries are also known to promote heart health.

How to consume? Strawberry is consumed as a raw fruit. But its delicious taste makes it a choice for juices, salads, and dessert toppings. Include strawberries as much as possible in your diet.

Strawberries

Tomatoes

Cooked tomatoes are a rich source of vitamin C. It is found that two tomatoes totally weighing 246 gm has 56.1 mg (93% DV) of vitamin C in them.

How to consume? You can consume tomatoes raw, as a juice, and also as an ingredient in various salads and side dishes.

Chili peppers

Chili peppers contain ‘Capsaicin’ compound which makes chilies hot. Of the three varieties of chilies, red, green, and yellow, it is green chilies that provide high amounts of vitamin C. While 40 grams of red chilies provide 144 mg of vitamin C, the same quantity of green chilies provide 242 mg of vitamin C.

How to consume? Since these are very hot and spicy, chill peppers are generally used as an ingredient in various food preparations. It is useful to note that about half a cup of dried or chopped chill peppers gives 107.8 mg of vitamin C.

Kale

Kale is a dark green leafy vegetable. Though there are many varieties of leafy vegetables, kale provides more quantity of vitamin C than other varieties. To quantify, for about 100 gm. of the vegetable, kale gives 120 mg (200% DV) of vitamin C.

How to consume? You can water cook and eat it, saute and add to your dishes or make it a part of a raw salad.

Nutritious Kale
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Cauliflower

Cauliflower is a commonly consumed vegetable and 25gm of it provides 46 mg of vitamin C.

How to consume? Cauliflower probably needs no detailing regarding how to consume. It can be used as an accompaniment for rice or bread, you can steam cauliflowers and add them to salads, you can make a simple and tasty soup with cauliflowers or just gently roast them and eat as a snack.

Pineapple

Pineapple contains 78.9 mg of vitamin C in just a cup of slices. It is also found to contain bromelain, a known digestive enzyme that reduces bloating. It is also found to contain 131% of the daily requirement of vitamin C.

Mangoes

Many varieties of mangoes are available and the average size of mango is about 130 gm. This contains 54 mg of vitamin C which is equivalent to 89% of the recommended daily requirement. In addition, mangoes are rich in many other minerals and vitamins.

Brussels Sprout

Also known as little cabbages, Brussels sprouts contain good quantities of vitamin C. Every 100 gram of these sprouts provides 74.8 mg of vitamin C. They are also found to be helpful in fighting cancer and heart diseases.

How to consume? Brussels sprouts are consumed after roasting. You can roast them in an oven to minimize the use of oil.

Brussels Sprouts_3
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Kiwi fruits

Kiwi fruits are available in green and golden colors. The green kiwi fruit provides 92.7 mg (155% of DV) of vitamin C per 100 gm of fruit. In addition to vitamin C, these fruits are rich in potassium and copper.

How to consume? This fruit is consumed as fresh fruit or in salads. A juice can also be made.

Guavas

We come across two varieties of guavas – white and pink pulps with tiny seeds. 100 gm of guava provides 228.3 mg (381% of DV) of vitamin C. Guavas are also rich in dietary fiber besides small quantities of folic acid, potassium, and manganese.

Amla

It is known as Indian gooseberry which contains a very high level of vitamin C. Just 100 gm of amla has 62.95mg of vitamin C which is equivalent to the daily recommended level of C vitamin.

How to consume? Amla is consumed as raw fruit and also in the boiled form. You can also make a dilute amla juice or use it to make pickles.

Gooseberries in the wicker basket
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Black currants

These fruits form an excellent source of vitamin with 100 gm. of the fruits providing 301% of D.V of vitamin C. This fruit should ideally be consumed as a juice.

Acerola (cherries)

Also known as cherries, acerola is a small-sized fruit 100gm of it providing 1677.6mg of vitamin C equivalent to 1864% of RDA.

How to consume? This fruit is consumed in juice form, like fresh fruits, in jams, in desserts, and so on. Cherries are very tasty and are hence a good choice for kids too.

Coriander

About 10 gm of coriander powder provides 56.7 mg i.e. 95% of RDA. Coriander is generally used as a spice and in some parts in decoction form. You could probably make a powder of coriander seeds by dry roasting and grinding them at your home and then use it in cooking.

Rosehip

This rose flower has 52mg of vitamin C in just 20gm of the flowers.

How to consume? It is consumed in raw form or as a jelly. You can also make tea with dried rosehip flowers. You can see the method of preparing rosehip tea in this post.

Dried rosehips
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Peas

While peas are an excellent source of plant-based protein, they are also a good source for vitamin C. About 84 gm of peas provides 14.2 mg of vitamin C.

How to consume? Peas are a very versatile seed. You can use it as a garnish on dishes, you can cook it and just snack on it, you can also roast peas and eat it with little salt or pepper, and so on. Peas soup is another excellent way to include peas in your diet.

Bowl of peas soup garnished with shaved Parmesan cheese
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Source

  • Anon., 2008. Antioxidant properties of polar and non‐polar extracts of some tropical green leafy vegetables. Science of Food and Agriculture, 88(14), pp. 2486-2492.

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/jsfa.3367

  • Aruoma, O. I., Landes, B., Ramful-Baoolall, D. & Bourdon, E., 2012. Functional benefits of citrus fruits in the management of diabetes. Preventive Medicine, pp. S12-S16.

https://blog.univ-reunion.fr/detroi/files/2015/03/preventive-medecine.pdf

  • Bhowmik, D., Sampath Kumar, K., Paswan, S. & Srivastava, S., 2012. Tomato-A Natural Medicine and Its Health Benefits. Journal of Pharmacognosy and Phytochemistry.

https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Shravan_Paswan2/publication/285176270_Tomato-A_Natural_Medicine_and_Its_Health_Benefits_INTRODUCTION_Tomatoes_are_a_member_of/links/565c42f108ae4988a7bb6751/Tomato-A-Natural-Medicine-and-Its-Health-Benefits-INTRODUCTION-Tomatoes-are-a-member-of.pdf

  • M, S., 1944. Vitamin C in Plants: Indian Gooseberry (Phyllanthus emblica). 03 June.

https://www.nature.com/articles/153684a0

  • Rybarczyk-Plonska, A., Hansen, M. K., Wold, A.-B. & Hagen, S. F., 2014. Vitamin C in broccoli. Postharvest Biology and Technology, Volume 98, pp. 82-89.

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0925521414001938

Kalaivani Selvaraj, MBA, got her Master’s degree in Human Resources. Due to her interest in natural healing, she pursued studies in the field of alternative medicine and is certified in Aromatherapy by Isla Verde Spa Training Academy. Ms. Kalaivani Selvaraj is also certified by Stanford University School of Medicine in Introduction to Food and Health.