Vitamin C: An Antioxidant Powerhouse That Helps Prevent Strokes And Cardiovascular Disease
Posted Mar 19 2010 12:00am
After a recent love affair with Vitamin C, and its hyped up ability to be one of the best cold and flu fighting remedies around, this nutrient soon fell out of favor with the mainstream media, and the general public. If it were not for its glory days in curing scurvy in sailors, which is really an early stage of leaky blood vessels, its reputation would have been seriously compromised when it was discovered it was not the magical cure all for colds and flu. At least, not for everyone. The human intellect really loves the idea of a one nutrient fits all, or single bullet, approach to health. But, there is one target area we all share in common, and that is our blood vessel system health.
Vitamin C has taken its share of skepticism much needed among the medical research community over the last 40 years. The controversies surrounding this nutrient began surfacing in the late 1960's, when Nobel laureate Linus Pauling PhD. recommended large amounts to help fight colds, flu, and several years later, cancer. Despite extreme medical resistance then, today's nutritional science has, now, confirmed its importance to human health. Supplementing with vitamin C, if you are worried that you are not getting enough, can greatly improve human health.
According to Pauling, the truth is that this vitamin plays a pivotal role in our existence, and in all life on this planet. Plants make vitamin C from simple sugars. It helps protect them (and you when you eat them) from sunlight-generated free radicals. As humans, and a small number of other animal species, we are not able to manufacture this nutrient on our own. Due to this inborn, genetic error dating back thousands of years, we are totally dependent on getting this, much needed, vitamin in the foods we eat.
Because our ancestors lost their ability to make this nutrient, the entire blood vessel system became the most vulnerable area in the human body. A deficiency in vitamin C is a predominate risk factor for developing cardiovascular disease, heat attack, and stroke.
The stability and elasticity of blood vessel walls is, absolutely, dependent on a high amounts of this vitamin in the diet. This nutrient stimulates our production of collagen, which can be compared to iron reinforcements in a high-rise building. High intake amounts of this vitamin protects blood vessel walls in the heart and brain, so no fatty deposits can build up on artery walls.
Dietary consumption of fresh, raw fruits and vegetables serve as an example of a healthy dietary lifestyle. These foods also help by changing gut flora and adding fiber and roughage to the diet. Eating them raw, or lightly cooked, may also slow down refined carbohydrate absorption, lessening the chance of a rapid blood sugar spike after meals. Frequent high blood glucose levels contributes to obesity and diabetes, another risk factor in developing cardiovascular disease, and stroke.
As fresh, whole fruits and vegetables are high in vitamin C, and low in calories, it makes sense to eat more of them instead of highly refined carbohydrate snacks such as donuts, cakes, and pastries. Besides, it is a healthier way to satisfy those sweet, sugary food cravings we all get. Fresh fruit and vegetables are, also, a good source of water that does count towards the daily hydration levels of the body.
So what is the bottom line in this article report? How much vitamin C should we be eating to take advantage of this nutrients heart and brain blood vessel strengthening power? The take home message is this, everyone should be striving to eat between 5 and 9 servings of whole fruits and vegetables a day.
Everyone is individualistic in vitamin C needs, how much is good for you, in keeping your blood vessel system healthy and strong, may be different for someone else. If you are currently suffering from an existing heart condition or brain functioning problem, it would be wise to seek advice from your health care provider, or a natural health care expert.
About the Author
Brenda Skidmore has spent the last five years actively researching natural health care alternatives. It is her sincere desire to empower others by sharing this important information. To improve your health today visit