10 Vitamin C-Rich Foods That Improve Immunity and Stimulate Collagen Production

During the summer, protecting your skin from the sun is crucial, eating vitamin C-rich foods (or ascorbic acid) is essential for this. Alongside beta-carotene, vitamin C boosts collagen synthesis, strengthens the skin and shields it from sun damage. Discovered in the 1930s by Hungarian scientist Albert Szent-Györgyi, this micronutrient is vital for skin health. It fights free radicals that age the skin prematurely and supports collagen production, keeping skin firm, toned, and supple.

But how do we make sure we get enough vitamin C? One way is via vitamin C supplements: the recommended daily dose is 75 mg for women and 90 mg for men. However, nutritionists suggest it is always better to eat the right foods through a balanced diet.

Including vitamin C-rich foods in your diet is easy– thanks to the variety of delicious fruits and vegetables that contain it. They also contain flavonoids that help the body absorb this essential nutrient. Moreover, increasing the intake of fresh, seasonal fruits and vegetables in our daily diet offers several benefits, not just for our skin but for overall health too.

The benefits of vitamin C

  • It’s a powerful antioxidant action and prevents cell aging.
  • It strengthens the immune system, protecting us from seasonal ailments.
  • It promotes the absorption of iron in the intestines and contributes to the production of red blood cells.
  • It’s beneficial for the health of the cardiovascular system and protects capillaries.
  • It maintains healthy connective tissues, accelerates wound healing and prevents bleeding.
  • It’s involved in the synthesis of certain neurotransmitters and hormones, such as serotonin, and supports the nervous system.

We have selected 10 vitamin C-rich foods for you to consume in rotation every day. Reminding you that unlike supplements (more than 1,000 mg of ascorbic acid can cause stomach and intestinal upset) foods cannot provide us with “too much” vitamin C. Since vitamin C is sensitive to heat and can be deactivated by cooking, it is better to consume them raw, or only lightly cooked, at a low temperature.

Hot peppers

Red chilis are a real vitamin C bomb: 100 micrograms of these spicy little veggies provide about 229 micrograms. In addition, they also contain a considerable dose of vitamin A (the topical version of which is retinol), with anti-aging action on the skin. Chop them raw onto pasta, meat, fish or salads.


This exotic fruit that grows in tropical areas also tops the list of foods richest in vitamin C: 100 grams of guava offers about 228 mg of this vital nutrient. In addition, this polyphenol- and carotenoid-rich super fruit is a powerful antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiviral and antibacterial. When you find it, hoard it.

Blackcurrants and other berries

Berries, particularly blackcurrants, which boast about 180 mg per ounce, are abundant sources of vitamin C. Incorporate them into your daily routine by blending them into morning smoothies, mixing them with Greek yogurt, or enjoying them as a nutritious snack paired with almonds, cashews, or walnuts between meals.

Red peppers

Red and yellow peppers are great sources of vitamin C. They offer approximately 166 mg per 100 mgs. These peppers are also delicious when enjoyed raw: dice them to add a flavorful crunch to salads, or cut them into strips for dipping in hummus or guacamole.


This leafy green is a favorite among health-conscious Californians. Kale and avocado salads are revered as the epitome of healthy eating. Packed with vitamin C, providing 120 mg per 100 grams, this vegetable can be used in salads, nutrient-rich juices, and smoothies to maximize its health benefits.


Originating from China and now available worldwide, kiwi is an exceptional source of vitamin C, boasting about 85 mg per 100 grams. Beyond its vitamin content, kiwi also provides vitamin E, calcium and potassium. Its optimal blend of soluble and insoluble fiber, alongside enzymes, promotes healthy digestion and smooth intestinal transit. Enjoy kiwi sliced atop your morning muesli or as a refreshing snack between meals.

Oranges (and other citrus fruits)

Oranges are often the first fruit that comes to mind when we think of vitamin C, and for good reason: along with all citrus fruits, they are rich sources of this essential nutrient. An average orange provides about 75 mg of vitamin C, while half a grapefruit offers around 39 mg. Fresh juices are also excellent sources, but it’s best to consume them immediately after preparation to prevent the vitamin C from oxidizing.


Broccoli is a health powerhouse thanks to its high vitamin C content, offering about 89 mg per ounce. Have you ever tried it raw, thinly sliced in salads, with a dressing made from tahini (sesame cream), lemon juice, olive oil and soy sauce? If raw broccoli isn’t to your taste, you can try it steamed with some sea salt sprinkled over. Or, enjoy it with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a squeeze of lemon.


If you’re a fan of strawberries, here’s another reason to indulge: they’re rich in vitamin C. Just one cup of four to five medium strawberries provides about 49 mg of this essential nutrient. Incorporate them into Greek yogurt, blend them into smoothies, or freeze them to enjoy year-round.

Brussels sprouts

These micro-cabbages are a powerhouse of beneficial nutrients for the skin: they contain beta-carotene, vitamin A, vitamin E, and vitamin C, which is essential for collagen synthesis. 100 grams of these vegetables provide 85 mg of vitamin C. Try eating Brussel sprouts raw, sliced very thin in salads, perhaps with a few slivers of Parmesan cheese. And your skin will glow.

Brussels sprouts, often dubbed micro-cabbages, pack a punch in terms of nutrients that benefit the skin. They are rich in beta-carotene, vitamins A, E, and C, crucial for collagen synthesis. Just 100 gms of these vegetables provide approximately 85 mg of vitamin C. For a skin-boosting treat, try Brussels sprouts raw, thinly sliced in salads, or topped with a few shavings of Parmesan cheese. Your skin will thank you with a healthy glow.

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