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By Sharon Moalem
Mice do it, cats do it, dogs do it and even elephants do it. For some unknown reason humans and our primate cousins (and, yes, guinea pigs, too) are the only mammals that cannot make their own vitamin C. While the rest of the mammalian world happily and effortlessly takes glucose and turns it into vitamin C, we have been condemned to get ours from food alone.
We actually still have the same gene used by other animals to make vitamin C from glucose (in humans it's called GULOP)—it's just that our version looks genetically like someone cut out parts of it to make a paper napkin snowflake. This means that no matter how hard our DNA and body try, we're not going to be making vitamin C anytime soon. It's also one of the major limitations on our species' ability to travel long distances without a fresh supply from food.
We haven't figured out a way to fix the GULOP gene yet and so until then you are completely dependent on consuming this key vitamin to shelter you from the damage caused by oxidative stress to your body. Thanks to advanced research studies, we now know that certain genes some people inherited also make them require more vitamin C because these genes don't work as well to prevent oxidative damage that can then harm their tissue and DNA.
So to get your necessary daily dosage of vitamin C daily—90 milligrams for men, 75 milligrams for women—reach for these surprising foods:
Just one half cup of chili peppers will give you 107.8 mg of vitamin C and the extra hot spice is also one of the best spices to help you lose weight, so you'll see the benefits on and off the scale.
Strawberries are not only some of the best foods that tame inflammation, but one cup of the sweet summer fruit will give you just about 84.7 mg of vitamin C.
Green Bell Pepper
The green bell pepper (hint: it's one of the foods you don't need to refrigerate) will also give you a whopping 95.7 mg of vitamin C.
Cauliflower, a shockingly low-calorie food, will deliver 127.7 mg of vitamin C but won't cost you many calories. Win, win!
Prepare yourself for 78.9 mg of vitamin C with just one cup of pineapple, so go ahead, throw the fruit on the grill and enjoy the health benefits.
Adapted from The DNA Restart.
This article was reposted with permission from our media associate Rodale Wellness.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Charli Shield
At unsettling times like the coronavirus outbreak, it might feel like things are very much out of your control. Most routines have been thrown into disarray and the future, as far as the experts tell us, is far from certain.
By Elizabeth Henderson
Farmworkers, farmers and their organizations around the country have been singing the same tune for years on the urgent need for immigration reform. That harmony turns to discord as soon as you get down to details on how to get it done, what to include and what compromises you are willing to make. Case in point: the Farm Workforce Modernization Act (H.R. 5038), which passed in the House of Representatives on Dec. 11, 2019, by a vote of 260-165. The Senate received the bill the next day and referred it to the Committee on the Judiciary, where it remains. Two hundred and fifty agriculture and labor groups signed on to the United Farm Workers' (UFW) call for support for H.R. 5038. UFW President Arturo Rodriguez rejoiced:
By Julia Conley
A council representing more than 800,000 doctors across the U.S. signed a letter Friday imploring President Donald Trump to reverse his call for businesses to reopen by April 12, warning that the president's flouting of the guidance of public health experts could jeopardize the health of millions of Americans and throw hospitals into even more chaos as they fight the coronavirus pandemic.
By Melissa Kravitz Hoeffner
Over six gallons of water are required to produce one gallon of wine. "Irrigation, sprays, and frost protection all [used in winemaking] require a lot of water," explained winemaker and sommelier Keith Wallace, who's also a professor and the founder of the Wine School of Philadelphia, the largest independent wine school in the U.S. And water waste is just the start of the climate-ruining inefficiencies commonplace in the wine industry. Sustainably speaking, climate change could be problematic for your favorite glass of wine.