Only raw, whole-food, plant-based foods are rich in vitamin C. Animal-derived or refined foods contain negligible amounts. Eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables to meet your daily needs of vitamin C.
Health benefits of vitamin C
Vitamin C has many health benefits:
- it’s required for the biosynthesis of collagen and certain neurotransmitters
- regenerates other antioxidants, like vitamin E
- supports weight loss and wound healing
- fights free radicals. Thus, it might help prevent or delay the development of certain cancers, cardiovascular disease, and other diseases in which oxidative stress plays a key role (1)
- improves the absorption of nonheme iron. Eat foods high in vitamin C with foods high in iron, like beans!
- it’s necessary for protein metabolism
What’s the recommended daily intake?
The recommended daily intake of vitamin C, for the majority of people, is about 75 – 90 mg (1). Smokers should consume an additional amount of 35 mg of vitamin C per day. They have increased oxidative stress. Also, pregnant and lactating women require higher dosages.
What foods are rich in vitamin C?
Only plants contain vitamin C. Hence, a whole-food plant-based diet can help you meet your daily needs.
Actually, fruits and vegetables are the best dietary sources of vitamin C. According to the American Heart Association, we should eat at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day (2).
Try to consume them raw. You can add to your favorite banana smoothie! Vitamin C is very vulnerable to heat.
Vegetables are good sources of vitamin C
Peppers, broccoli, spinach, kale, and cauliflower are common vegetables rich in vitamin C.
Hot chili peppers
100g of red chili peppers contain 193.1 mg of vitamin C. Peppers are also low in calories. 100g contain only 40 calories.
Yellow sweet peppers
100g of yellow hot chili peppers contain 183.5 mg of vitamin C! Furthermore, it has only 27 calories. Just 1 yellow pepper contains up to 341 mg of vitamin C. That’s 378% of Daily Value (DV) (3).
Red Sweet Peppers
100g of red sweet peppers contain 127.7 mg of vitamin C. Just one medium red sweet pepper contains about 152 mg of vitamin C.
Green Sweet Peppers
100g of green sweet peppers contain 80.4 mg of vitamin C.
Kale: the leafy green with the highest vitamin C content
100g of kale contain 93.4 mg of vitamin C. Kale is among the most nutrient-dense foods you can eat. It’s good for losing weight. Also, kale is particularly high in important carotenoids, such as lutein and zeaxanthin.
Broccoli & Cauliflower are high in vitamin C
100g of raw broccoli contain 89.2 mg of vitamin C. 100g of raw cauliflower contain 48.2 mg of vitamin C.
100g of Brussels sprouts contain 85 mg of vitamin C. A small cup contains about 75 mg of vitamin C.
Garlic has decent amounts of vitamin C
100g of garlic contain 31.2 mg of vitamin C. On the other hand, onions contain only 7.4 mg of vitamin C per 100g.
Cabbage is a good source of vitamin C
100g of red cabbage contain 57 mg of vitamin C. Additionally, green cabbage contains 36.6 mg of vitamin C per 100g.
Even potato contains vitamin C
100g of potatoes contain 19.7 mg of vitamin C. Additionally, sweet potatoes contain 18.7 mg of vitamin C.
Eat a tomato salad regularly
100g of tomatoes contain 13.7 mg of vitamin C. Furthermore, a large tomato can provide you with 24.9 mg of vitamin C.
100g of green peas contain 40 mg of vitamin C.
Carrot greens are high in vitamin C
Did you know that carrot greens are edible? They have a great nutritional value. For instance, 100g of carrot leaves have more than 200 mg of vitamin C!
Fruits rich in vitamin C
Eating a wide variety of fruits is the easiest way to boost your daily intake of vitamin C.
- Rose hips contain 426 mg of vitamin C per 100g
- Guava contains 228.3 mg of vitamin C per 100g. This dose is 253% of the DV.
- Strawberries contain 58.8 mg of vitamin C per 100g. Strawberries are good for losing weight, as they’re low in calories and sugars! Even people with diabetes can eat them regularly!
- Kiwi contains 92.7 mg of vitamin C per 100g. A whole kiwi contains about 64 mg of vitamin C.
- Orange contains 53.2 mg of vitamin C per 100g, while orange juice contains 33.6 mg of vitamin C per 100 mL. A 12-oz glass of orange juice has more than 120 mg of vitamin C, or 130% of the DV.
- Lemon contains 53 mg of vitamin C per 100g. Freshly squeezed lemon juice contains 38.7 mg of vitamin C per 100 mL.
- Grapefruit contains 34.4 mg of vitamin C per 100g. One large grapefruit provides up to 114 mg of vitamin C, or 126% of the DV.
- Papaya contains 60.9 mg of vitamin C per 100g. Papaya is among the richest dietary sources of vitamin C.
- Mango contains 36.4 mg of vitamin C per 100g.
- Pineapple contains 47.8 mg of vitamin C per 100g.
Furthermore, all berries are good dietary sources of vitamin C.
|vitamin C (mg)|
Moreover, as cranberries are among the best sources of melatonin, drinking cranberry juice before bed may improve sleep quality!
Herbs are also rich in vitamin C.
Herbs are among the healthiest foods you can eat. They’re nutrient-dense foods. They’re pretty high in vitamin C as well.
- thyme contains 160.1 mg of vitamin C per 100g.
- parsley contains 133 mg of vitamin C per 100g.
- basil contains 18 mg of vitamin C per 100g.
- cilantro contains 27 mg of vitamin C per 100g.