We’ve all had it drilled into us: citrus fruits are the source for vitamin C. But citrus fruits aren’t the only source. They aren’t even the best source! The amount of vitamin C in one serving of papaya, strawberries, pineapple, bell pepper, broccoli, or Brussels sprouts exceeds the amount of vitamin C in a medium orange.
Many fruits are high in vitamin C. Here is a list from The World’s Healthiest Foods of the fruits and vegetables with ½ or more of the daily requirement of vitamin C in each serving.
Fruits With At Least 50% Daily Recommended Vitamin C
- Papaya (one medium) – 224%
- Strawberries (one cup) – 113%
- Pineapple (one cup) – 105%
- Oranges (one medium) – 93%
- Kiwi ( 1- 1/2 in) – 85%
- Cantaloupe (1 cup) – 78%
- Grapefruit (1/2) – 59%
What is surprising is the number of vegetables that meet the criteria.
Vegetables With At Least 50% Daily Recommended Vitamin C
- Bell Peppers (1 cup) – 157%
- Broccoli (1 cup) – 135%
- Brussels sprouts (1 cup) – 129%
- Cauliflower (1 cup) – 73%
- Kale (1 cup) – 71%
- Cabbage (1 cup) – 69%
- Bok Choy (1 cup) – 59%
- Parsley (1 cup) – 54%
- Turnip greens (1 cup) – 53%
- Sweet potato (1 cup) – 52%
Vitamin C is needed for the immune system, but that is not it’s only claim to fame. Vitamin C is needed for many physiological functions. It is an anti-oxidant. It is a co-factor for eight enzymes, thereby aiding in developing and maintaining scar tissue, blood vessels, cartilage, hormonal stability, biosynthesis of neurotransmitters, and transport of fatty acids into mitochondria.
So how can you mix and match some of the veggies and fruits above to deliver a power dose of vitamin C to your diet? A fruit salad? Yeah, that’s an easy way. But let’s look at a more creative recipe.
Beautiful and Delicious Kale Salad
- 1 bunch of kale
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 tart apple
- handful of walnuts
- handful of raisins
- 1 lime
- honey to taste
- Tear the kale into edible pieces, saving the stems for another recipe or thinly slicing them for this salad.
- Sprinkle olive oil over the leaves (use a little more or a little less as needed) and massage the oil into the leaves with both hands until the leaves become soft and pliant.
- Add sliced red pepper, chopped apples, raisins, and walnuts.
- Juice one lime. Add honey to taste and whisk. Pour over salad and mix well.
If you want to supplement your vitamin C through a natural food source, two of the best alternatives are rose hips and orange peels. A tablespoon of rose hips provides as much vitamin C as an orange. If you save your orange peels, slice them up and dehydrate them. You have made instant, chewable vitamin C. If you grind them up after dehydration, you can use the powdered peel in smoothies or in other foods. My favorite is orange flavored waffles. For more information on strengthening the immune system, see the first source link below. Check out Homemade Vitamin C and Make Your Own Homemade Nutrition Powder.
- Shillington’s Total Nutrition Formula
- Rose Hips Solid Extracts – Wise Woman Herbals
- Micro Liposomal C – Allergy Research Group
- Homemade Vitamin C
- Total Nutrition – Make your own Homemade Multivitamin and Mineral Formula
- Make Your Immune System Bulletproof with These Natural Remedies
- The Health Benefits of Liposomal Vitamin C