Vitamin C Content (page 3)
Get the Facts
- Vitamins contain a variety of complex chemicals. Like ascorbic acid (vitamin C), vitamins have names but are frequently identified by letters, such as A, B, C, D, E, and K. How all vitamins are used by the body is not exactly known, but we do know that many chemical reactions cannot occur in the human body if the proper vitamins are missing. For example, for calcium and phosphorous to be effective in the formation of teeth, vitamin D must be present. Use chemistry and biology texts to find out more about the uses of vitamins. Are chemists, such as Linus Pauling, correct about the role of vitamin C in helping to prevent colds? Is there any evidence to substantiate Pauling's views about the vitamin? What chemical reactions is vitamin C known to be involved in that keep your body functioning normally? What effect does the lack of individual vitamins have on the human body?
- When skin is exposed to sunlight, the ultraviolet radiation in the light causes cholesterol (a fatrelated compound) to be chemically converted to vitamin D. Fresh citrus fruits are a good source of vitamin C. Find out more about the natural sources of vitamins. How have the refining and the processing of foods affected their vitamin content?
- The titration method was used in this project to determine an unknown concentration of vitamin C. Find out more about this process. Use a chemistry text to find the meaning of the following terms: titration, end point, indicator, and standard solution. You could use this information when preparing an oral presentation and a written report.
- Combining vitamin C and tincture of iodine results in a redox reaction in which ascorbic acid is oxidized and iodine is reduced. Find out more about the following terms: redox reaction, oxidized, reduced, oxidizing agent, and reducing agent. What is the difference between the structure of vitamin C (ascorbic acid) molecules and the structure of dehydroascorbic acid, into which the vitamin C is changed as a result of the redox reaction?
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