When you consider vitamin C, you could suppose primarily of oranges, however it’s really considerable in a number of different meals — meals you’re most likely already consuming regularly.

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Vitamin C is very plentiful in citrus fruits (oranges, sure, but additionally grapefruit, lemons, and so forth.) and greens (particularly cruciferous greens, which we’ll clarify in a second).

Registered dietitian Devon Peart, RD, MHSc, shares extra information about meals which can be excessive in vitamin C, plus tasty tips for incorporating them into your weight loss program.

What are the very best sources of vitamin C?

Vitamin C is an important nutrient, which suggests your physique wants it however can’t make it by itself. Instead, you must get vitamin C from the meals you eat — particularly, vegatables and fruits.

“For peak freshness and nutrients, choose fruits and vegetables that are in season where you live,” Peart advises. “Frozen fruit and veggies are a great option, too, especially if you live in climates where seasonal produce is limited.”

But why do you want vitamin C within the first place? Good query. It helps your physique kind and preserve connective tissue like pores and skin and bones, and it’s additionally a strong antioxidant, defending your cells from injury brought on by dangerous molecules referred to as free radicals.

Citrus fruits

Let’s begin with what you already know: Yes, oranges are an important supply of vitamin C. But they’re definitely not the one citrus fruits that ship on this vital nutrient.

The quantity of vitamin C in citrus fruits varies relying on lots of elements, together with the sort, measurement and ripeness of the fruit itself. But listed below are some estimates of the vitamin C content material in widespread citrus fruits:

  • Orange: 70–90 milligrams (mg).
  • Grapefruit: 80–100 mg.
  • Lemon: 30–40 mg.
  • Lime: 20–30 mg.

“Just one orange or grapefruit can fulfill your daily required dose of vitamin C,” Peart says.

How to get pleasure from them: Here’s a vitamin C-forward recipe you most likely haven’t tried but: Quinoa Orange and Pistachio Salad fulfills 100% of your day by day requirement of vitamin C and vitamin A.

Cruciferous greens

It’s not breaking information that inexperienced veggies are good for you, however you could be stunned to study that they’re an important supply of vitamin C, too. Vegetables within the cruciferous class all have distinctive, cross-shaped flowers — and plenty of of them provide you with all or most of your day by day vitamin C consumption:

  • Broccoli (1 cup, chopped): 80 mg.
  • Kale (1 cup, chopped): 80 mg.
  • Brussels sprouts (1 cup): 75 mg.
  • Red cabbage (1 cup): 50 mg.
  • Cauliflower (1 cup, chopped): 48 mg.

“These veggies are all nutrient-dense and antioxidant-rich,” Peart says. “They’re also known to have anti-inflammatory properties, which can help reduce the risk of chronic diseases like heart disease and arthritis.”

A phrase of warning: If you’ve been recognized with an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism), verify along with your healthcare supplier earlier than consuming (or juicing) lots of cruciferous veggies, as they’ll intrude along with your physique’s manufacturing of thyroid hormone.

How to get pleasure from them: Bored by common salads and snacking on uncooked veggies? Incorporate cruciferous greens into your weight loss program with new-to-you recipes like:

White potatoes

If you’ve been advised that this most consummate of carbs can’t be a part of a wholesome way of life, it’s time to rewrite the script.

One medium-sized russet potato (that’s the usual waxy, brown variety) has about 17 mg of vitamin C, or roughly 35% of your day by day consumption. They’re additionally a very good supply of potassium and vitamin B6.

How to get pleasure from them: It’s finest to skip the French fries and tater tots. “The key to healthier potatoes is to not fry them in oil or top with lots of butter and salt,” Peart states. “You can boil or roast them or, if you’re craving that crispy crunch, try cooking them in the air fryer with a light coating of heart-healthy olive oil.”

There’s additionally at all times the basic baked potato (simply add broccoli and cheese) or, for one thing just a little uncommon, attempt your hand at Walnut Zucchini Potato Pancakes.

Red peppers

Peppers are form of like the alternative of site visitors lights. When it involves this crunchy backyard veggie, crimson means go: Red bell peppers have 1.5 instances extra vitamin C than their inexperienced counterparts.

“A medium red pepper has more than 150% of your daily recommended vitamin C intake,” Peart confirms.

How to get pleasure from them: Red peppers make for a easy snack. Just core and deseed one, then reduce it into strips and revel in it with hummus, muhammara or cannellini bean dip. You can even roast crimson peppers to eat as a aspect or so as to add to salads and sandwiches. And sautéed crimson peppers are excellent atop pizza and pasta or added to omelets and or stir-fries.

Strawberries

One cup of strawberries has nearly 150% of your day by day really useful consumption of vitamin C. They’re additionally a very good supply of dietary fiber, folate and antioxidants, making them an important addition to your weight loss program total.

“Strawberries are a smoothie staple and a fantastic summer snack,” Peart says. “They’re also a good base for decadent desserts that won’t send your blood sugar skyrocketing.”

How to get pleasure from them: For a brand new spin on this timeless fruit, attempt Strawberry Pretzel Squares or Vanilla Panna Cotta with Strawberries and Mint.

Papaya

Also referred to as pawpaw, the papaya is a comfortable, buttery fruit that form of tastes like a mango merged with a cantaloupe. And though it looks like it have to be a melon, it’s really a really massive berry!

One cup of contemporary papaya has practically 90% of your day by day really useful consumption of vitamin C. “It’s also packed with dietary fiber, folate and vitamin A,” Peart says.

How to get pleasure from it: Transport your style buds to the tropics by consuming contemporary papaya by itself or add it to Greek yogurt.

Guava

Guava is a vitamin C overachiever: One contemporary guava is full of anyplace from 73 mg to 247 mg of it, relying on the variability. Most guavas provides you with about 200% of your day by day really useful vitamin C consumption.

How to get pleasure from it: Not positive what to do with this flavorful tropical fruit? “Like any fruit, you can eat it on its own,” Peart suggests. “Just wash it, cut it in half, and use a spoon to scoop out the soft, juicy flesh inside. You can also add it to fruit salad or smoothies.”

Cantaloupe

Some folks consider cantaloupe as a “filler fruit,” however what it actually fills you up on is vitamins, together with nutritional vitamins C and A, potassium and fiber. “One cup of diced cantaloupe, whether in a fruit salad or on its own, will give you about 58% of your daily recommended amount of vitamin C,” Peart notes.

How to get pleasure from it: For two nice sources of vitamin C in a single tasty aspect dish, whip up a Cantaloupe and Tomato Salad — they work nice collectively, we swear! Jalapenos, lime juice and pumpkin seeds add acidity, warmth and just a little little bit of crunch, all with only a few energy and fairly a couple of vitamins.

Tomatoes

Your favourite backyard veggie (errr, fruit) gives you about 17 mg of vitamin C, though the quantity in every tomato will depend on its measurement, selection and different elements. That’s about 28% of your day by day really useful consumption, to not point out different vitamins like potassium, folate and vitamin Ok.

How to get pleasure from them: You most likely have already got a couple of favourite methods to organize tomatoes, however their versatility makes them an almost limitless supply of kitchen creativity. For a fast, simple and scrumptious possibility, do this Four-Ingredient Tomato Sauce, which jazzes up plain pasta with out all of the sugar and preservatives of canned sauce.

Kiwifruit

Want to knock out all of your day by day vitamin C in a single little fruit? Go inexperienced! “Have one kiwi at breakfast, and you’ll have consumed about 117% of your recommended daily amount of vitamin C,” Peart says.

Kiwi boasts different well being advantages, too, together with fiber, vitamin E and potassium — and also you’ll get much more of these advantages in case you eat it with the pores and skin on.

How to get pleasure from it: For a departure out of your commonplace smoothie, attempt making a Creamy Kiwi-Lime Smoothie that packs a high-protein punch. You’ll be all set on vitamin C for the day.

More methods to get your fill of vitamin C

You don’t need to chow down on a stalk of kale or chug a glass of orange juice to get your vitamin C repair. Peart shares easier tips for getting your day by day dose of this vitamin in tasty, easy-to-prepare methods:    

  • Get strategic about breakfast. Sautéed spinach and different veggies are excellent additions to omelets. And Peart loves turning frozen wild blueberries right into a easy topping for yogurt or protein pancakes. “Just heat them in a pot on the stove over low heat until they’re saucy,” she says.
  • Be a wise snacker. Keep contemporary fruit and veggies available for snacking, together with yogurt, hummus or salsa to dip them in. Peart additionally recommends freezing grapes for a refreshing summer time snack. They don’t have fairly as a lot vitamin C as different fruits, however they’re full of so many vitamins that they’re at all times a wholesome alternative.
  • Blend it up. Make smoothies with contemporary or frozen fruit and half a cup of frozen greens (for instance, spinach and kale). You’ll get two servings of fruit and one serving of greens — and also you gained’t even style the veggies! (“If veggies are your jam, though, try a green smoothie made mainly of veggies blended with yogurt, milk, or water,” Peart suggests.)
  • Choose vitamin C-rich sides. “Enjoy pinwheel slices of oranges or grapefruit as a side to grilled chicken for dinner with a Mediterranean vibe,” Peart says, “or make a mango chutney as a dinner side for a tropical twist.” You can even add berries or citrus fruits to summer time salads and pomegranates, pears or persimmons to winter salads.
  • Freeze fruit for later. Puree veggies and fruit and retailer in ice dice trays within the freezer, to be used in muffins. Keep frozen berries available so as to add to muffins and cereals, and freeze one-inch segments of peeled banana to drop into smoothies.

“Orange” you glad all of those methods to load up on vitamin C? Your physique will thanks for it — and your style buds aren’t more likely to complain both.

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