Feeling run down from your busy day-to-day schedule?  Need a boost in your workout regimen?  Want to have more energy, but don't want to drink energy drinks or dehydrating caffeinated beverages?  Take the natural route for energy boosting with vitamin C.

Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin found in many fruits and vegetables that not only helps boost immunity, but also helps in providing an energy boost through its role in aiding the absorption of iron in the body, which in turn can decrease risk of fatigue-causing iron-deficiency anemia. In addition, vitamin C is an antioxidant, which decreases cell damage and in turn aids in repair of bones, teeth, cartilage, and assists in wound healing. Since it is water-soluble though it is excreted from our body on a daily basis, so it is important to get a daily dose of vitamin C.  The recommended daily intake of vitamin C is 75 milligrams for women and 90 milligrams for men.

Those vegetables that contain the most vitamin C are green vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, brussels sprouts, and cabbage as well as carrots, peppers, squash, zucchini, and tomatoes that contain antioxidant-rich carotenoids that give such vegetables their bright, red, yellow, and orange colors.

Those fruits that contain rich amounts of vitamin C include citrus fruits such as oranges or grapefruits, and other fruits such as cantaloupes, watermelon, and berries such as strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, and raspberries.

Add vitamin C to your diet by eating a vitamin-rich fruit or vegetable with each meal and snack.  Some vitamin-C meal and snack tips include having an orange or grapefruit with breakfast, some bell pepper slices with a tablespoon of low-fat salad dressing for a snack, some spinach leaves in a salad for lunch, or some stir-fry vegetables for dinner, to name a few.

Further the energy effectiveness of vitamin C by eating foods rich in iron such as leafy greens, animal products such as eggs, meat, poultry, and seafood, or beans.  Together, vitamin C will help the iron in these foods get absorbed more efficiently by your body, prevent anemia, and in turn prevent iron-deficiency anemia symptoms such as fatigue and lack of energy.

 Sources: National Institutes of Health-Vitamin C, National Institutes of Health-Iron