An apple a day keeps the doctor away. But what about oranges? Citrus fruits are loaded with the antioxidant vitamin C, which has been linked to an improved immune system, wound healing and even preventing arthritis. Perhaps your rheumatologist has recommended a vitamin C regimen every day.
Unlike some other vitamins, our bodies can’t make vitamin C, so we need to obtain it from our diets. When we don’t get enough vitamin C, we can experience fatigue, slower healing and more infections. According to the Arthritis Foundation, taking vitamin C may help prevent inflammatory arthritis. Unfortunately, when it comes to vitamin C, you can definitely have too much of a good thing.
This is how the vitamin C arthritis-connection could be affecting you.
The Dangers of Too Much Vitamin C
In 2004, Duke researchers found that when patients with osteoarthritis consumed high amounts of vitamin C, they were more at risk for developing bone spurs and joint damage. This was due to a protein in the blood triggered by vitamin C. Because a vitamin C deficiency can put you at a higher risk of developing arthritis, it’s important to find the right balance.
Take a look at the other foods to avoid if you have arthritis.
How Much Is Too Much?
The Office of Dietary Supplements recommends 90 milligrams of vitamin C for men and 75 milligrams for women each day, and the Arthritis Foundation agrees. This amount fulfills your body’s need for the vitamin without overdoing it.
The Best Sources of Vitamin C
It’s best to skip the supplements and opt for real foods instead. Vitamin C supplements like Emergen-C contain significantly more vitamin C than the recommended daily amount, which could put you at risk for arthritis complications.
Start with fresh fruits and vegetables. Of course, citrus fruits are a great source of vitamin C but watch the milligrams. Eating one whole orange will deliver 97 milligrams of vitamin C!
For men, one heaping cup of fresh broccoli will take care of your daily vitamin C requirements. For women, a baked potato has enough daily vitamin C.
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Blood Orange Avocado Salad
My refreshing side salad is such a nice addition to our calorie-loaded Thanksgiving dinner. Use regular oranges if you can’t find blood oranges. Finely chopped walnuts work well in place of the pomegranate seeds, too. —Nancy Heishman, Las Vegas, NevadaGo to RecipeTaste of Home
Crab, Grapefruit and Watercress Salad
The flavor of crab is always wonderful with grapefruit, avocado and watercress. The addition of a delicious poppy seed dressing makes this simple-to-prepare salad extra special! —Lisa Speer, Palm Beach, FloridaGo to RecipeTaste of Home
This is one my favorite salads and it is so healthy for you! Guests will be surprised at how wonderful it tastes. —Frances Sheridan Goulart, Weston, ConnecticutGo to RecipeTaste of Home
South-of-the-Border Citrus Salad
Orange, grapefruit and jicama add color and texture to this out-of-the-ordinary fruit salad. Sometimes I’ll toss in slices of mango and cucumber for extra fun. —Mary Fuller, SeaTac, WashingtonGo to RecipeTaste of Home
Citrus Avocado Salad
This recipe nicely showcases grapefruit and oranges, which are at their peak around the holidays. Citrus fruits pair well with a sweet dressing. —Sonia Candler, Edmonton, AlbertaGo to RecipeTaste of Home
Ruby Red Spinach Salads
These fabulous salads blend contrasting flavors deliciously. Pomegranate seeds add vibrant color, a pleasant crunch and a healthy dose of vitamin C. —Veronica Callaghan, Glastonbury, ConnecticutGo to RecipeTaste of Home
Grapefruit & Fennel Salad with Mint Vinaigrette
My dad has a red grapefruit tree and shares his crop with me. I toss the grapefruit with onion, fennel and mint for a fresh, fabulous salad. —Catherine Wilkinson, Dewey, ArizonaGo to Recipe
Caramelized Grapefruit Salad
Grapefruit segments are treated to a slight caramelization in a hot skillet just before topping this colorful salad. It’s finished with a light honey mustard dressing, bacon and avocado. —Maria Davis, Flower Mound, TexasGo to RecipeTaste of Home
Citrus & Roasted Beets Salad
Glistening citrus and beets star in this colorful, tangy salad. It’s a refreshing mix of bright flavors—just add chicken and it’s a complete meal. —Peter Eldridge, Clermont, FloridaGo to Recipe
Favorite Fruit Salad
I spend a lot of time in the kitchen, especially when our four children and nine grandchildren come to visit. They always ask for this salad when they’re here for dinner. —Doris Dion, Lake Ozark, MissouriGo to Recipe
Beet, Grapefruit & Onion Salad
My husband loves pickled beets. I paired them with a little citrus for an Eastery salad. It has such a great color combination! —Michelle Clair, Seattle, WashingtonGo to RecipeTaste of Home
Citrus Avocado Spinach Salad
Tossing this salad together with creamy avocado and tangy citrus is so simple, and it practically makes a meal of itself. —Karole Friemann, Kimberling City, MissouriGo to RecipeTaste of Home
Texas Citrus Salad
Light and refreshing, this mixed citrus salad is perfect to serve at barbecues and cookouts. The dressing makes it glisten with goodness.—Joan Hallford, North Richland Hills, TexasGo to RecipeTaste of Home
Layered Fresh Fruit Salad
People always pass on compliments when I take this salad to covered-dish suppers. It’s nice on a hot day…with a winter meal…or as a dessert! We live on a small farm where my garden gives me lots of possibilities for fresh food. —Page Alexander, Baldwin City, KansasGo to Recipe