There are a few vitamin C foods that really everyone knows. Oranges, lemons or other representatives of citrus fruits are among them. But what has the most vitamin C and where is nothing of the important nutrient in it?
Imagine you’re looking for an extra dose of vitamin C. In front of you are three plates, whereby you can only choose one of them. On plate number one is a juicy fried beef steak. Plate two has a delicious-looking bread with orange jam on it and plate three has a soft-boiled egg.
Have you already decided? A small spoiler in advance: The answer in this case is not so easy, after all, there are a whole series of errors around the topic of vitamin C.
But don’t worry, we have researched and summarized all the important information about vitamin C in food here for you. So you should be able to solve the above puzzle without a problem after reading.
But first, a brief explanation of the vitamin itself.
What is vitamin C good for and how much should you eat a day?
Your body needs vitamin C, or ascorbic acid, as the nutrient is also called, for a whole host of things. Probably the best known is the fact that vitamin C keeps the immune system going. More precisely, it is even the case that your immune system can not function properly with an inadequate supply. In addition, ascorbic acid is also an important part of our metabolism and in protecting our cells from free radicals. This effect is also used by cosmetic products that use vitamin C for skin care.
In short, vitamin C is essential.
So what about the daily requirement?
As a general guideline for everyone aged 15 and over, about 100 milligrams of vitamin C per day are recommended. Of course, this need is also dependent on other factors and can vary depending on the existing disease or individual stress.
Converted to food, about 1 – 2 medium-sized oranges per day would be needed to cover the vitamin C daily requirement. 100 grams of meat of the fruit contain about 50 milligrams of ascorbic acid.
Two oranges a day? That sounds like a lot at first. In fact, only a few can claim to really plaster two oranges every day.
Fortunately, the fruit and vegetable department in the supermarket has some alternatives ready. A surprise is that many regional foods have a multiple of the vitamin C content of orange.
So let’s look at who the real vitamin C bombs are.
Orange or paprika? These foods have the most vitamin C:
Although citrus fruits are the best-known ascorbic acid donors, there are one or two surprises in the ranking of the 20 best vitamin C foods. For example, you will find three times as much vitamin C in 100 grams of nettle as in the same amount of orange!
It should be noted that the vitamin content of fruits and vegetables can vary depending on the variety.
|Ranking||Food||Vitamin C content per 100 grams|
|1||Acerola cherries||~ 1,700 mg|
|2||Haws||~ 400 – 1,250 mg|
|3||Sea buckthorn berry||~ 450 – 600 mg|
|4||Nettle||~ 330 mg|
|5||Guava||~ 230 mg|
|6||Currant (black)||~ 177 mg|
|7||Parsley||~ 160 mg|
|8||Ramsons||~ 150 mg|
|9||Paprika (red)||~ 140 mg|
|10||Sorrel||~ 115 mg|
|11||Brussels sprouts or broccoli||~ 110 mg|
|12||Kale||~ 105 mg|
|13||Kiwi||~ 100 mg|
|14||Fennel||~ 93 mg|
|15||Papaya||~ 80 mg|
|16||Cauliflower or dandelion||~ 65 mg|
|17||Strawberry||~ 55 mg|
|18||Orange or lemon||~ 50 mg|
|19||Grapefruit||~ 40 mg|
|20||Apple, depending on the variety||~ 10 – 35 mg|
As you can see, there are numerous alternatives to orange, lemon and Co. If you value regional products, you should especially use rose hips, nettles, black currants or red peppers for vitamin C.
Do you also get vitamin C through the consumption of meat and other animal products?
Surely you have noticed that there are no animal products in the list. There’s a simple reason for this: although fish and meat are quite rich in vitamins, they generally don’tcontain vitamin C.
The only exception here are offal,such as liver. This brings it, from beef or sheep, at least to a whopping 30 mg per 100 grams.
Eggs and milk, on the other hand, look bad. They do not contain vitamin C.
Is an overdose possible due to too many vitamin C foods?
Too much vitamin C is usually not a problem for healthy people, as it can be excreted well through the metabolism.
In certain pre-existing conditions or intolerances, however, an overdose of vitamin C can lead to digestive problems and diarrhea.
In addition, an allergy to the vitamin is also possible. This is manifested, for example, by itching or swelling in the mouth and throat after eating foods containing vitamin C. Such symptoms should definitely be clarified with your doctor!
Normally, however, the absorption of too much vitamin C proceeds without problems.
It’s important to note: How to prepare food without losing vitamin C
So let’s get back to our puzzle from the beginning. As we now know, neither the boiled egg nor the juicy steak will provide us with vitamin C. So only the bread with orange jam remains.
After all, orange has a lot of vitamin C. So that’s the right choice, right?
Unfortunately, we also have to reject this. Because although such a jam bread is very tasty, there is a problem: Vitamin C is largely destroyed at high temperatures. Of course, this also includes cooking jam. In addition, the vitamin is water-soluble. So if you cook vegetables or fruits in water or even water vapor, a large part of the ascorbic acid is lost.
Since we often eat fruit cold anyway, it is important to pay attention to the gentlest possible preparation, especially with vegetables. Ideally, you should completely dispense with the effect of heat and make yourself a tasty salad. From the fruit salad to the spicy wild garlic salad with lemon dressing, the rich selection of vitamin C foods finally offers enough opportunities to conjure up delicious vitamin bombs on the plate.