Get your Vitamin C without the Citrus

The soundtrack of winter seems of consist of three basic notes: the cough, the sneeze, and the sniffle. Add lack of sleep and Syracuse weather on top of all that, and you’ve got the perfect cold.  Although vitamin C has not been proven to prevent the common cold, it has been shown to take a couple of days off of it.

Vitamin C is an essential vitamin, meaning your body cannot make it, so you must obtain it from your diet. Even though you bleed orange, you may not like oranges, but that’s okay! There are plenty of foods rich in Vitamin C besides the classic orange and orange juice:

  • Grapefruit: Add a little sugar on the top and you have a sweet, thirst quenching breakfast or snack. Don’t forget to squeeze the juice out at the end for an extra boost of vitamins!

  • Strawberries: Although they’re out of season, you can still enjoy. Throw some frozen strawberries in your smoothie or put them in the microwave for about 30 seconds, put them in your favorite yogurt, and enjoy a filling breakfast.

  • Broccoli: Great with any dish at dinner time! If the taste isn’t for you, try sprinkling a little bit of cheese on top (mozzarella and cheddar are my personal favorites).

  • Red or Green Bell Peppers and Tomatoes: Perfect with hummus for a snack, on top of salads to add a little sweetness,  or sautéed in with your favorite pasta, olive oil, and garlic.

The longer these foods sit in your fridge the more vitamin C they loose — even more reason to buy them frequently and eat them soon after. Also, consider steaming your vegetables to lock in and preserve those vitamins.

Besides helping you beat the sniffles, vitamin C plays a key role in the maintenance, growth, and repair of tissue in your body. It keeps your bones, teeth, cartilage, and skin strong and healthy. It also acts as an antioxidant to prevent certain cancers and heart disease. Vitamin C even promotes healthy aging, which we all need after that stressful Duke game! Don’t forget to add a little color to your plates with these foods at each meal —  it will go a long way!

By Katy Davis