10 Fruits High in Vitamin C and the Powerful Health Benefits

If you’re looking for a simple way to boost your immunity and overall health, look no further than vitamin C. Also known as ascorbic acid, this water-soluble vitamin is often associated with immune system support, but it actually has many more health benefits.

Let’s take a look at how Vitamin C positively influences our health, and discover some of the best sources of this essential nutrient. Whether you’re a fruit lover or just looking to improve your health, you won’t want to miss this informative guide.

How Does Vitamin C Benefit the Body?

Vitamin C is an essential nutrient that plays a crucial role in maintaining good health. It is a powerful antioxidant that helps to protect the body from harmful free radicals, which can damage cells and lead to chronic diseases. Vitamin C also supports the immune system by reducing inflammation and fighting off infections.

In addition to its antioxidant properties, Vitamin C is required for collagen synthesis, which is essential for healthy skin, bones, and connective tissue. It also plays a key role in the synthesis of L-carnitine, a chemical needed for metabolism, as well as the formation of certain neurotransmitters and protein metabolism.

Studies have shown that Vitamin C intake is associated with a decreased risk for a variety of chronic diseases, including cancer, autoimmune diseases, cataracts, age-related macular degeneration, rheumatoid arthritis, heart disease, and neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Vitamin C has also been shown to help reduce the severity and duration of the common cold and may help to slow down the aging process of the skin.

Incorporating Vitamin C-rich foods into your diet, such as citrus fruits, strawberries, kiwi, broccoli, and peppers, can help to ensure that you are getting enough of this essential nutrient to support your overall health and well-being.

How Much Vitamin C Do We Need Per Day?

To reap the impressive benefits of Vitamin C, it is important to know the recommended daily amounts (RDAs) for adults over the age of 19. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), men should aim for 90 milligrams (mg) of Vitamin C per day, while women should aim for 75 mg per day. Pregnant women should consume 85 mg per day, and lactating women should consume 120 mg per day.

It is important to note that excessive amounts of Vitamin C can be harmful to our health. The Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL) for Vitamin C for all adults is 2,000 mg. Consistently consuming more than this amount can lead to negative health outcomes, as Vitamin C can become a pro-oxidant and contribute to further cell damage.

Common symptoms of excessive Vitamin C intake include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal cramping. Therefore, it is recommended to focus on whole food sources of this antioxidant before turning to supplements. However, it is important to be aware of any Vitamin C that may be present in the supplements you already take.

Here is a summary of the recommended daily amounts for adults over the age of 19:

Men90 mg/day
Women75 mg/day
Pregnant Women85 mg/day
Lactating Women120 mg/day

To avoid harmful effects, it is important to consume Vitamin C in recommended amounts and to avoid excessive intake.

10 Fruits High in Vitamin C

If you’re looking to boost your immune system, incorporating fruits high in Vitamin C into your diet is a great place to start. Here are the top 10 fruits that are rich in this essential nutrient:


Oranges are a classic source of vitamin C, with one medium-sized fruit containing 70 mg of the vitamin. This amount is consistent across all varieties of oranges available at the grocery store.


Although not as commonly found in supermarkets, guava is an excellent source of Vitamin C, with one cup containing an impressive 376 mg of the nutrient. If fresh guava isn’t available, guava juice is also a good option.


Kiwis are not only delicious, but also packed with nutrients, including Vitamin C. One medium-sized kiwi contains 64 mg of the vitamin.


Strawberries are a popular fruit that can be found year-round in most grocery stores. Half a cup of strawberries contains 49 mg of vitamin C.


Papaya is a tropical fruit that is high in Vitamin C, with one cup of cut papaya containing 88 mg of the nutrient. Many 100 percent fruit juices also contain high amounts of Vitamin C.


Cantaloupe is a sweet and juicy melon that is not only delicious, but also a great source of Vitamin C. One cup of cantaloupe contains 58 mg of the nutrient.


Grapefruit can be an acquired taste due to its bitter flavor, but it’s a great source of Vitamin C. Half a medium-sized grapefruit contains 39 mg of the vitamin, while ¾ cup of grapefruit juice contains 70 mg.


Apples are a widely available fruit that can help boost your Vitamin C intake, with one medium-sized apple containing 8 mg of the nutrient.


Pineapple is an affordable tropical fruit that is loaded with nutrients, including Vitamin C. One cup of pineapple contains 79 mg of the vitamin.


Cherries are a tasty snack that also contain Vitamin C. One cup of pitted sour cherries contains 15 mg of the nutrient, while acerola cherries are an even better source, with upwards of 1,000 mg in the same serving.

Incorporating these fruits into your diet can help you meet your daily requirements for Vitamin C and boost your overall health and immunity.

Other Foods High in Vitamin C

In addition to fruits like lemons, limes, lychees, persimmons, and black currants, there are many other foods that are rich in Vitamin C. Some of the best non-fruit sources of this essential micronutrient include bell peppers, broccoli, snow peas, kale, chili peppers, banana peppers, kohlrabi, parsley, Brussel sprouts, rosehips, and tomatoes (which are technically a fruit). Incorporating these foods into your diet can help you meet your daily Vitamin C needs.

Adding Vitamin C-Rich Foods Into Your Daily Routine

Incorporating Vitamin C-rich foods into your daily routine is easy and delicious. Fruits such as oranges, strawberries, kiwis, and grapefruits can be added to smoothies, oatmeal, chia pudding, and salads. Vegetables like bell peppers, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and kale can be included in rice dishes, casseroles, salads, soups, and grain bowls. By aiming for at least two to three servings of these top sources each day, you can easily meet your daily Vitamin C needs without the need for supplementation.

The Bottom Line

Incorporating whole food sources of Vitamin C into your diet is a great way to reap the many benefits of this micronutrient. Be cautious of supplements with excessive levels of Vitamin C, as overconsumption can lead to health risks. Luckily, there are many delicious fruits and vegetables that are rich in Vitamin C, making it easy to meet your daily needs. Consider adding citrus fruits, bell peppers, kiwi, and broccoli to your meals for a tasty boost of Vitamin C.