Foods rich in Vitamin C, such as oranges, bell peppers, potatoes, and tomatoes.
| | |

Doctor Says This Is the Most Surprising Nutrient for Gut Health

Maintaining healthy behaviors for your gut is essential to keeping it well-balanced, as new research clearly shows. Gut health is fundamental to holistic health. Family medicine specialist Laura Purdy, M.D., M.B.A., is board-certified. “Your gut has lots of bacteria that play a role in immune health, blood sugar control, heart and brain health, and the way you digest food,” she adds. Disease and inflammation can be brought on by a poorly functioning gut.

One unexpected nutrient may help prevent stomach problems in addition to improving your gut health through getting enough sleep, exercising, and taking probiotics.

Vitamin C, often regarded as the superfood for stuffy noses and dry coughs, may improve the health of your intestines as well as your immune system. Vitamin C is a plant-based nutrient that is commonly found in oranges, but it is also present in bell peppers, potatoes, and tomatoes. Ascorbic acid, sometimes known as vitamin C, is essential for immune system function, wound healing, and the production of collagen to sustain the body’s tissues.

Eating foods high in vitamin C is vital since your body cannot produce this essential ingredient on its own. Here are several strategies to include additional vitamin C in your daily routine and how study suggests it may boost gut health.

The Gut Health Benefits of Vitamin C

Perhaps Strengthen Your Gut Lining

Your gut health can be influenced by the foods you eat, and consuming dietary fiber-rich foods encourages your digestive tract to create short-chain fatty acids. A paper published in Cell Communication and Signaling in 2023 states that SCFAs nourish the intestinal epithelial cells that lining your intestines. They also support the integrity of your gut lining, which prevents dangerous poisons from entering your circulation. This is when vitamin C could be useful.

After four weeks, a small randomized trial in Gut Microbes from 2021 revealed increases in total SCFAs when vitamin C supplementation was given instead of a placebo. Higher quantities of propionate and butyrate, two well-researched SCFAs linked to immunological function and anti-inflammation, were also observed by the researchers. To precisely understand how vitamin C may aid in the production of additional SCFAs, more research is required. 

Could Help Prevent Intestinal Disorders

Your body naturally produces free radicals as a result of the numerous processes that are going on inside of it at all times. Unstable chemicals called free radicals have the potential to harm your cells. Everything is OK as long as there are sufficient antioxidants to keep them in check. Otherwise, according to a 2020 review published in Infectious Disorders Drug Targets, free radicals might result in severe oxidative stress, which may cause disease. Purdy claims that vitamin C is excellent for the health and digestive system because it is an antioxidant that can help fight oxidative stress and neutralize free radicals.

Potentially Enhance Gut Biodiversity

A diverse gut is beneficial to your health since it is home to hundreds of different bacterial strains, each of which has special benefits. Discovering methods to maintain gut variety is beneficial for maintaining healthy function because diseases like inflammatory bowel disease and type 2 diabetes can undermine it.

According to Purdy, “vitamin C can actually improve the balance between good and bad bacteria in your microbiome, which can help your gut health.” Participants in a small 2021 study that was published in Antioxidants consumed 1,000 mg of vitamin C daily, and the results showed positive changes in the diversity of bacterial strains. Researchers found that the phylum Firmicutes, which includes the key bacterial group that produces SCFAs in healthy individuals, Lachnospiraceae, has increased. Furthermore, despite the fact that participants in the 2021 Future Microbiology study received varying dosages of vitamin C, the study also discovered increases in the bacteria Lachnospiraceae and Bifidobacteriaceae. However, additional research is required to validate these results.

Three Easy Ways to Increase Your Vitamin C Intake

It’s not as hard as you would imagine to get enough vitamin C. Nearly all the vitamin C you require each day can be obtained from even one medium-sized orange. The National Institutes of Health recommends 75 mg of vitamin C for women and 90 mg for males. Try these methods to incorporate extra vitamin C into your diet to enhance its advantages for your stomach, since you don’t have to limit yourself to only drinking orange juice. 

How Much Is Enough Vitamin C?

The Recommended Dietary Allowance of vitamin C for adults 19 years of age and older is 90 mg for men and 75 mg for women, according to the National Institutes of Health.

1. Use the Triple-S Method

Foods high in vitamin C, such as chopped Brussels sprouts, frozen strawberries, and stewed tomatoes, work well in soups, smoothies, and salads. There are simple ways to make sure you’re receiving enough by using these three S-words. A Pineapple Green Smoothie or Kale and Bean Stew can be a terrific place to start!

2. Prioritize the MyPlate Method

Many fruits and vegetables are high in vitamin C, and the MyPlate technique urges you to fill half of your plate with them. To boost the vitamin C content of your meal, try adding broccoli, roasted bok choy, or a salad with mustard greens.

3. Add Citrus Fruit Flavor to Your Drinks

Squeezing lemon, grapefruit, or any other citrus fruit into normal water, seltzer water, or tea is an easy way to increase your daily intake of vitamin C. It’s also a delicious and simple method to remain hydrated throughout the day.

In summary

Water-soluble and antioxidant, vitamin C is often found in fruits and vegetables. Remarkably, researchers have discovered that vitamin C may improve the microbial variety, prevent sickness, and strengthen the gut lining. More proof is required to establish a genuine connection because a large portion of the research is recent and only examines a small sample of participants. In general, including foods high in vitamin C to your diet is essential for maintaining good health and strengthening your immune system.

Similar Posts