Oh, say, can you C? It’s a vitamin with lots of benefits

WASHINGTON — Looking for the fountain of youth? You might want to fill your glass with orange juice and tomato juice. They’re great sources of vitamin C that might help you live longer.

New research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition says people with high vitamin C blood concentrations are associated with having 20 percent lower risk of early death and a 15 percent lower risk of developing cardiovascular disease compared with those who rarely eat fruits and vegetables.

The findings from the University of Copenhagen and Herlev and Gentofte Hospital are based on the eating habits and DNA of about 100,000 people involved in the Copenhagen General Population Study.

Natural sources of vitamin C are better than supplements, according to the study.

The National Institutes of Health has evaluated concentrations of vitamin C per serving to find:

  • Juice from oranges, grapefruit and tomatoes have more vitamin C than raw fruit;
  • Red peppers have more vitamin C than green peppers;
  • Age and cooking can reduce food vitamin C levels;
  • Steaming and microwaving degrade vitamin C levels less than other cooking methods.

Some other good sources of vitamin C (in order of concentration): kiwi fruit, broccoli, strawberries, Brussels sprouts, cantaloupe, cabbage, cauliflower, baked potato, spinach and green peas.

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Kristi King

Kristi King is a veteran reporter who has been working in the WTOP newsroom since 1990. She covers everything from breaking news to consumer concerns and the latest medical developments.

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