How Does Vitamin C Help Your Immune System?

Your immune system is made up of a vast network of cells all working together to keep you healthy. Black elderberry is one powerful way to help support your immune system. Vitamin C is another great way and here’s why.

What is Vitamin C?

Vitamin C is an essential vitamin that plays many different roles in your body. All are important for your health and well-being. It helps your body form blood vessels, cartilage, muscle, and collagen. It is also key to your body’s healing process, maintenance of bones and teeth, and helps your body absorb iron.

Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps protect your cells against free radicals. Free radicals are produced when your body breaks down food or is exposed to toxins in the environment, like cigarette smoke. Free radicals are thought to play a role in heart disease, cancer, and other diseases. Antioxidants like Vitamin C help combat these effects.


Vitamin C and the Immune System

One of Vitamin C’s many roles is helping the immune system function properly. It does this by helping your body produce white blood cells and helping those cells function more effectively.

White blood cells are your body’s defense against infections.  They are constantly on the lookout for foreign invaders like viruses and bacteria.

White blood cells are essential to your body’s immunity, and Vitamin C plays a key role in helping those cells do their jobs.

In addition, Vitamin C is vital to your skin’s defense system. Your skin is your largest organ and your body’s first line of defense against infection. Your body actively transports Vitamin C to your skin where it can act like an antioxidant and help strengthen those barriers. 

How do you get enough Vitamin C?

The recommended daily intake for Vitamin C is 65 to 90 mg for adults. Your body doesn’t make Vitamin C on its own, so you need to get all the Vitamin C your body uses from the food you eat. This is one reason why eating a wide variety of healthy foods is important.

When you think of foods rich in Vitamin C, orange juice and citrus fruits might come to mind. But there are a lot of different foods and juices that will you get you to your recommended amount of Vitamin C. Some of them might even surprise you.

Foods and beverages high in Vitamin C include:

  • Broccoli
  • Red cabbage
  • Green and red peppers
  • Kiwi
  • Grapefruit
  • Lemon
  • Oranges
  • Tomato juice
  • Orange juice
  • Cantaloupe
  • Strawberries
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cauliflower

By eating these foods, not only will you get the Vitamin C you need, but you’ll also get other vitamins and minerals your body needs to stay healthy.

Can you have too much Vitamin C? 

The safe upper limit for Vitamin C – or the maximum amount you can take in a day that likely won’t cause harm – is 2,000 mg. The recommended daily intake for adults is up to 90 mg, but some studies have shown that taking 500 mg is safe and could be beneficial.

Your body doesn’t store Vitamin C, so overdoes is not a concern. However, getting too much can cause an upset stomach or diarrhea.

Vitamin C supplements for the immune system

If you’re concerned you don’t get enough Vitamin C through your diet, taking a Vitamin C supplement is a great way to help fill in the gap.

Sambucol offers many different products that include added Vitamin C as well as Zinc. Zinc is another nutrient that may help to support a healthy immune system. Along with the power of premium Sambucol Black Elderberry, these products are the Immune Support Power Trio you’re looking for to keep your immune system running at its best.*



Mayo Clinic article written by Mayo Clinic Staff on Nov. 17, 2020 – “Vitamin C”

WebMD article written by Kathleen M. Zelman, MPH, RD, LD on March 15, 2022 – “The Benefits of Vitamin C”

Healthline article written by Ryan Raman, MS, RD on Feb. 18, 2020 and medically reviewed by Atli Arnarson BSc, PhD – “7 Impressive Ways Vitamin C Benefits Your Body”

University of Rochester Medical Center article medically reviewed by L. Renee Watson MSN RN, Raymond Turley Jr PA-C, Todd Gersten MD – “What are White Blood Cells?”