Kiwi proudly boasts its “superfood” title for all the right reasons. In this nutrient-dense fruit, one particularly stands out – vitamin C. A recent study has revealed that consuming just 2 gold kiwis is as good as vitamin C supplements in preventing vitamin C deficiency. Let’s learn more about what this study says and other benefits of consuming kiwi every day.
Did You Know?
Animals like cats and dogs can synthesize vitamin C on their own, whereas, some birds, fish, and humans cannot. Though humans have the gene needed for vitamin C production, it has been inactivated through evolution. So, vitamin C needs to be supplemented through diet. Your genes can also influence how effectively vitamin C is absorbed from your diet and used by the body. SLC23A1 and SLC23A2 are two genes involved in this process. Mutations in these genes, influence the absorption of vitamin C by the body. You can learn in-depth about your nutritional requirements using your existing ancestry genetic test DNA data.
Role Of Vitamin C In The Body
Vitamin C, or ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin required for the normal growth and development of the body.
Here are some functions of vitamin C in the body:
- Helps form an important protein called collagen that is found in the skin and connective tissues like tendons, ligaments, and blood vessels
- Assists in wound healing and scar tissue formation
- Repairs and maintains bones, teeth, and cartilage
- Helps in iron absorption
An important property of vitamin C is that it is one of the most powerful antioxidants.
Antioxidants are molecules that prevent free radical damage.
This free radical damage is responsible for aging and plays a role in cancer and the development of other chronic diseases.
Free radicals are formed due to many reasons, 2 common ones being:
- Breakdown of foods
- Exposure to tobacco smoke and radiation
RDA For Vitamin C
Since the body cannot make or store vitamin C, consuming lots of vitamin C-containing foods in your daily diet is essential.
The recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin C is 90 mg/day for adult males and 75 mg/day for adult females.
Eating 2 Gold Kiwis Better Than Vitamin C Supplements?
Several fruits and vegetables are excellent sources of vitamin C. Some of these include:
- Citrus fruits
Studies have shown that people who consume vitamin C supplements have stronger immunity.
One study states that consuming two kiwi fruits daily as part of the diet was as good as taking vitamin C supplements.
A study published in Foods stated that consuming two SunGold kiwis daily for six weeks increased vitamin C intake by 150 mg per day.
Researchers found that consuming this level of vitamin C eliminates the need for supplementation.
The 24 participants in the study were between 25 and 60 years of age and had no history of type 1 or type 2 diabetes or impaired glucose tolerance.
The study was designed to understand the effects of daily kiwi fruit consumption.
In this 6-week study, one set of participants was required to consume two Actinidia chinensis var. (marketed as Zespri SunGold Kiwifruit) per day. The remaining participants acted as a control.
Urine and venous blood samples and the participants’ body weight were monitored before, during, and at the end of the study.
Though a small-scale study, the results were promising. The following observations were noted in the study:
- Urinary vitamin C was significantly higher in the kiwifruit phase than the no kiwifruit phase
- no evidence of weight gain induced by kiwifruit in the diet.
- Systolic blood pressure in kiwi group was higher than that of non-kiwi group
- No changes in inflammatory markers
- Increased intake of dietary fiber in kiwi group
How Much Vitamin C Does A Kiwi Give?
Every 100 g of Zespri kiwi contains 161.3 g of vitamin C, meaning having two of them gives you more than twice the RDA of the vitamin.
How Many Kiwis Can I Eat In A Day?
Consuming two SunGold kiwis gives you more vitamin C content than the RDA.
So, you can safely consume two kiwis in a day.
Other Health Benefits Of Kiwi
Eating kiwis offers several health benefits:
- The high vitamin C content boosts immunity, enhances the repair of body tissues, and ensures normal body development.
- Vitamin E content provides strong antioxidant properties
- Fiber in kiwis makes the fruit excellent for digestion
- Kiwis have vitamin K that supports normal blood clotting
- Due to the high fiber and potassium content in kiwi, they are good for heart health
- The high serotonin in kiwis is a precursor of melatonin (the hormone required for normal sleep patterns)
Summary: Gold Kiwis and Vitamin C
- Kiwis are sweet and zingy fruits loaded with vitamin C.
- Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin required for the normal growth and development of the body.
- The recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of vitamin C is 90 mg/day for adult men and 75 mg/dL for adult women.
- A study published in Foods stated that consuming two SunGold kiwis daily for six weeks increased vitamin C intake by 150 mg per day.
- Besides the benefits of vitamin C, kiwis offer several other health benefits.