‘Common’ vitamin C deficiency may increase risk of ‘sagging skin and wrinkles’

According to Karl Kristian, skincare expert and founder of health and beauty brand New Nordic, vitamin C is an “important” nutrient that helps support everything from your immune system to your bones and skin. Friend. For those who don’t get enough, side effects can range from feeling tired for a short time to noticing changes in looking in the mirror over time.

Collagen is the main structural protein found in the cells that make up the various connective tissues of the body.

“Vitamin C is very important in helping to protect the body’s cells, keeping them healthy by creating antibodies to protect against disease, so it’s a nutrient,” he explains. Essential to strengthen the immune system.

“Another benefit of vitamin C is that it helps maintain healthy skin by producing collagen, which prevents sagging skin and wrinkles.”

According to Dr James East, a gastroenterologist at Mayo Clinic Healthcare in London, collagen protein production is also important for your bones.

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If you’re experiencing deficiency-related symptoms and you’re concerned, your GP is the best connection.

However, early symptoms of vitamin C deficiency can vary.

Rachel Clarkson, Doctify dietitian and nutritionist and founder of The DNA Dietitian explains that some of the early symptoms of a deficiency can include feeling “tired and low on energy” , weakness or pain in muscles or joints, and easy bruising.”

According to Dr. East, the body’s stores of vitamin C can “deplete” in 8 to 12 weeks if people don’t get enough in their diets.

“Vitamin C deficiency is more likely to occur in people who smoke or are exposed to secondhand smoke, have certain gastrointestinal diseases, such as inflammatory bowel disease, or certain types of cancer, or are uncommon,” he explains. regularly eat fruits and vegetables”.

Although more serious vitamin C deficiencies are rare, they can occur in some patients.

She explains: “Chronic vitamin C deficiency can lead to a disease called scurvy, which is very rare in the UK.

“Symptoms of scurvy include jaundice (yellowing of the eyes and skin), generalized pain, tooth loss, dental problems, and anemia.”

Ms Clarkson adds: “Vitamin C deficiency is often identified by assessment of symptoms and current diet. Blood tests are rarely used because vitamin C is water-soluble.

“This means that any excess vitamin C consumed is excreted in the urine and levels fluctuate daily, so it is not a reliable measure of vitamin C intake. .”

Depending on how deficient you are, you can add more to your diet simply by increasing certain nutrient-rich foods.

“Vitamin C is abundant in many fruits and vegetables, which means it is easy to get enough from food,” Ms. Clarkson said. Citrus fruits like lemons, limes, and oranges are rich in vitamin C, as are berries and kiwis.

“Bell peppers are also rich in vitamin C, but it is essential to consume them in their raw form to get the full benefits of vitamin C, as vitamin C breaks down with heat.”

As with bell peppers, Dr. East recommends packing “potatoes, tomatoes, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and spinach.”

However, he adds: “Supplements are an effective way to increase vitamin C levels and may be appropriate for people with poor dietary diversity or a condition that impairs vitamin C absorption.

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