Can Vitamin C Prevent the Flu?


It’s that time of year again. Tissues are being used left and right as adults and children alike start to develop runny noses along with their aches and fevers. That’s right; it’s flu season. Are we doomed to be like the others with coughs and night sweats or is there a way to prevent the flu altogether?

Vitamin C has long been the magic prevent-all and cure-all that everyone turns to. But does it work? According to the National Institutes of Health, vitamin C does not seem to reduce the risk of developing the common cold or flu for most people. However, taking vitamin C prior to getting sick, may help to ameliorate the severity of symptoms. If you are already experiencing symptoms, unfortunately it is too late for vitamin C to exhibit any beneficial effects during your cold.

While vitamin C may not have the magic cold reducing ability that we all hoped, there are still many benefits to consuming vitamin c including:

  • Preventing scurvy
  • Lowering hypertension
  • Treating vasodilation
  • Curing lead toxicity
  • Minimizing the developmentĀ of cancer
  • Lessening the onset of stroke
  • Improving overall mood
  • Stimulating the immune system
  • Speeding wound healing and repair

While there are many vitamin C supplements and powders you can take to experience all of the benefits this vitamin has to offer, natural food sources allow for the best absorption of vitamin C. Below are the foods richest in Vitamin C:

  • Peppers
  • Guava
  • Dark Leafy Vegetables (Kale, Swiss Chard, Spinach, etc)
  • Kiwi
  • Broccoli
  • Berries (Strawberries, Raspberries, Blackberries, etc)
  • Citrus Fruits (Oranges, Pummelo, Grapefruit, etc)
  • Tomatoes
  • Peas
  • Papaya

One comment

  1. tippysmom2 · February 23

    I take Vitamin C everyday. I don’t know if that is why or not, but I don’t seem to get sick as often as some other people do. (Knock on wood.)


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