Vitamin C For Healthy Skin

Portrait of teenage girl holding lemonVitamin C is essential for maintaining healthy and resilient skin.  As we age, we naturally lose this nutrient; other factors such as exposure to pollutants, UV light and cigarette smoke can also cause a loss of vitamin C.

Vitamin C plays an important role in the formation of collagen, a protein that gives your skin its elasticity.  Optimizing your skin’s level of vitamin C can help to counteract wrinkle formation by increasing collagen production amounts.

Another common skin concern that can be corrected with vitamin C is age spots caused by sun damage.  Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant; it can reduce the amount of sunburned cells and reduce age-related damage to cells.  Although vitamin C does not replace sunscreen, it may protect against further sun damage and repair discoloration and fine lines.

Topical vitamin C is the best formulation (rather than supplement or food sources) to target signs of aging.  When purchasing vitamin C, look for products that contain between 3%-10% of the active ingredient ascorbic acid or L-ascorbic acid.  Apply topical vitamin C once a day, ideally after exfoliation in the morning.  You can expect to see a noticeable difference in your skin within 4-8 weeks of beginning topical vitamin C.  Maximum benefits are achieved with 6 months of use.

Dr. Anne Hermann, a holistic internal medicine physician, offers full aesthetic services and numerous skin care treatment regimens to her patients.  Offices are maintained in Tampa and Saint Petersburg Beach, Florida.  Please contact the office at (813) 902-9559 for more information or to schedule an appointment.


What Can Vitamin C Do For Me?

Vitamin C is essential for normal growth and repair of tissues in the body; it forms an important protein to make skin, tendons, ligaments and blood vessels.  It helps form scar tissue, heal wounds, and repair/maintain bones, teeth and cartilage.   Vitamin C is also an antioxidant that assists to block damage caused by free radicals.  Free radicals are formed from exposure to radiation or tobacco smoke, and when your body breaks down food.  They are thought to play a role in heart disease, cancer and arthritis and are responsible for the majority of the aging process.

Because vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin, left over amounts are excreted from the body.  Thus, a continuous dietary supply is needed.  Dietary sources include:  citrus fruits, mango, kiwi fruit, pineapple, watermelon, berries, broccoli, peppers, sweet potatoes, leafy greens, and tomatoes.  The best sources are uncooked/raw fruits and vegetables.  Side effects from too much vitamin C are rare, but doses greater than 2000 milligrams a day may lead to diarrhea and stomach upset.  Vitamin C deficiency may lead to anemia, easy bruising, dry skin, decreased ability to fight infection, and nosebleeds.  According to the National Institutes of Health, the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C is 90 milligrams for men and 75 milligrams for women.

Dr. Anne Hermann, a holistic internal medicine physician, maintains offices in Tampa and Saint Petersburg Beach, Florida.  Dr. Hermann is also board certified in nutrition, and offers comprehensive vitamin testing to her patients.  Please contact the office at (813) 902-9559 for more information or to schedule an appointment.

This post was written by Anne Hermann. Follow Anne Hermann on Google, Facebook, Twitter & Linkedin.