Vitamin C and muscle retention
Vitamin C is buzzing when it comes to immunity. New research doubles down on this powerful vitamin with findings that suggest getting enough C in your diet is also key to avoiding age related muscle loss. Once you hit your 50s and beyond, loss of muscle tissue is one of the major factors behind increased risk of fall, bone fracture and loss of independence. Lead researcher Prof Ailsa Welch explains, “People over 50 lose up to one percent of their skeletal muscle mass each year. It’s a big problem, because it can lead to frailty and other poor outcomes such as sarcopenia, physical disability, type II diabetes, reduced quality of life and death.”
This study looked at the diets of more than 13,000 people to see if those who ate more vitamin C had more muscle mass than other people. Participants’ body composition—such as height, weight, body fat— was analyzed, while those participants recorded everything they ate for seven days. Blood samples were also drawn to measure vitamin C levels, finding that those with the most vitamin C in their blood also had the highest estimated skeletal muscle mass. Unfortunately, they also found between 50-60% participants did not consume enough vitamin C.
It’s recommended that men and women over 19 years old get 90 and 75mg, respectively. Fortunately, vitamin C is easy to add to the diet by eating vegetables. It doesn’t take much, just a half cup of red pepper comes in with 95mg, while half cup of cooked broccoli has 57g. Many fruits are also an excellent source, just one cup of juicy fresh pineapple provides 79mg. Get both with our Sesame-Ginger Cauliflower and Broccoli Salad with Pineapple!
Published January 2021