Not Enough Vitamin C: What are the Side Effects and Risks?


Vitamin C is an essential nutrient for a healthy body and is also an antioxidant. It has been linked to a wide range of health benefits, including growing and repairing body tissues. In addition, it helps in protecting the immune system protection, wound healing, lowering blood pressure, and many more.

Even though it’s an essential vitamin, your body cannot produce it naturally. You have to get it from foods or supplements rich in ascorbic acid. The best sources of vitamin C includes oranges, strawberries, spinach, kiwi fruit, grapefruit, potatoes, tomatoes juice, and orange juice. Eating these foods raw is recommended as heat and cooking in water can destroy the ascorbic acid in some of the food.

Vitamin C Deficiency: Effects of not enough Vitamin C in the body

Vitamin C deficiency is very common in Canada and the United States. People who consume little or no ascorbic acid may experience some symptoms especially scurvy, which causes inflammation of gums, joint pain, fatigue, and poor wound healing. Let’s explore the side effects of not having enough ascorbic acid in your body;

Dry, damaged skin

damaged skin - not enough vitamin C Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid is an antioxidant and helps protect the skin from radicals and damage caused by the sun and other pollutants, and a lack of it leaves you vulnerable to them. In addition, ascorbic acid promotes collagen production that leaves your skin smoother and youthful.

The skin contains high levels of ascorbic acid, which improves skin health and hydration. Conversely, having low levels of ascorbic acid can cause small acne-like bumps on the skin areas such as thighs and arms, which can be uncomfortable.

Weak and poor immunity

weak immune system - Vitamin C deficiency

Studies have shown that ascorbic acid can lower your chances of getting heart disease, bladder infections, and even pneumonia. As such, you are having lower amounts of it leaves your immune system susceptible.

SEE ALSO: 5 Immune-Boosting Foods You Need This Winter

Swollen and painful joints

Swollen joint - Vitamin C deficiency

Joints contain collagen-rich connective tissue that can be affected by a lack of ascorbic acid. This means one can experience pain, swelling, limping, and even difficulty in walking.

Bleeding gums, tooth loss, and frequent nosebleeds

Scurvy, vitamin C deficiency

Vitamin C keeps your blood vessels healthy, and a lack of it means the gum tissue becomes weak and inflamed, leaving the blood vessels to bleed a lot easier. In addition, an unhealthy gum implies at some point, the teeth can start to fall out, and the gum could also appear to be rotten.

Fatigue and low moods

Vitamin C deficiency

A low level of ascorbic acid in your body leaves you feeling cranky, tired, and irritable. However, this may not be severe and can be resolved by taking adequate ascorbic acid, and the results quickly turn around.

SEE ALSO: 5 Nutrient-Rich Fruits You Can Eat For A Healthy You

Slow-healing wounds

A vitamin C deficiency slows the rate of collagen formation, which plays a role in repairing the skin. It’s considered an advanced deficiency sign and, in severe cases, may cause old wounds to reopen, exposing you to infections.

Weight gain

Vitamin C regulates the release of fat, reduces inflammation and stress hormones in the body. Low vitamin C means that your energy production is dwindling, and your metabolism slows down, leading to some weight gain.

Iron deficiency

iron deficiency

Vitamin C helps absorb non-heme iron (iron from plant sources) more efficiently and ensures your body makes the most from iron-rich foods. Therefore, a deficiency of vitamin C typically goes hand in hand with an iron deficiency as well.

Hey Joyfreshers, what are the side effects you experience when your body lacks ascorbic acid? How long has it taken you to treat Vitamin C deficiency? Share with us below!

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