Skip to content
Related Articles
Open in App
Not now

Related Articles

Ascorbic Acid Formula – Structure, Properties, Uses, Sample Questions

Improve Article
Save Article
Like Article
  • Last Updated : 03 Oct, 2022
Improve Article
Save Article
Like Article

Ascorbic acid, often known as vitamin C, is represented by the formula C6H8O6. It is a water-soluble vitamin found in nature. Ascorbic acid is a powerful reducing and antioxidant agent that aids in the detoxification of processes and the synthesis of collagen in fibrous tissues, connective tissues, bones, capillaries, and skin.

Ascorbic acid, often known as ascorbate, is a vitamin present in a variety of foods and taken as a dietary supplement. It is used in the treatment and prevention of scurvy. Ascorbic acid is a necessary vitamin that aids in tissue healing and the enzymatic creation of neurotransmitters. It is required for the proper functioning of numerous enzymes in the body as well as the immune system.

Chemical Formula of Ascorbic acid

Ascorbic acid has the chemical formula C6H8O6 and is a member of the monosaccharide family. Ascorbic acid is also called as Vitamin C, and it is a vital vitamin for both animals and plants. Various types of Vitamins are useful for human body and Vitamin C is among them.

The L-enantiomer of Ascorbic Acid is Vitamin C. The opposing D-enantiomer, on the other hand, has no physiological relevance. The orientation at the final chiral center differs between the ‘D′ and ‘L′ forms, which have identical 2-D molecular structures. This chemical also has intramolecular hydrogen bonding. Because its lack causes scurvy, the name Ascorbic is derived from “anti-scurvy.”

Structure of Ascorbic acid

The structure of Ascorbic acid is a little complex, It contains 6 Carbon atoms, 8 hydrogen atoms, and 6 Oxygen atoms linked with double and single covalent bonds.


Properties of Ascorbic Acid

Various physical and chemical properties of Ascorbic acid are listed below

Physical Properties

Ascorbic Acid C6H8O6
Molecular Weight/ Molar Mass of Ascorbic acid 176.12 g/mol
Density of Ascorbic acid 1.694 g/cm3
Boiling Point of Ascorbic Acid 553 °C
Melting Point of Ascorbic Acid 190 °C
Solubility of Ascorbic Acid Water-soluble

Chemical Properties

When one of the hydroxyl groups is deprotonated, a vinylogous carboxylic acid produces the ascorbate anion. Furthermore, the feature is unique to reductones; enediols with a carbonyl group adjustment to the enediol group, specifically with the group 


Furthermore, the ascorbate anion is stabilized by electron delocalization caused by the resonance between two forms.

As a result, ascorbic acid is much more acidic than isolated hydroxyl groups. Furthermore, the ascorbate anion forms salts such as sodium ascorbate, calcium ascorbate, and others. It may also react with organic acids like alcohol, producing esters like ascorbyl palmitate and ascorbyl stearate.

Uses of Ascorbic Acid

Vitamin C is essential for our bodies because it performs several critical functions, and a deficiency of it causes a variety of illnesses.

  1. Vitamin C is necessary for wound healing because it is responsible for the hydroxylation of Proline and Lysine in collagen fibers found in connective tissue, fibrous tissue, bones, and teeth.
  2. Ascorbic acid improves iron absorption by retaining iron in the ferrous (Fe2+) state.
  3. Scurvy is caused by a lack of Vitamin C, which causes bruising, swollen gums, and inadequate dentine formation.
  4. It aids in the treatment of several viral and bacterial illnesses like pneumonia and the common cold.
  5. Vitamin C functions as an antioxidant and a cleansing agent in our bodies.
  6. It is also used to treat skin issues such as pimples, acne, and gum infection, among others.
  7. Vitamin C is also used to cure gastric and peptic ulcers caused by Helicobacter pylorus, a bacteria that infects the whole gastrointestinal tract.
  8. Gallbladder disease, including gallstones, can be avoided with regular vitamin C intake, more physical exercise, and lower total cholesterol levels.

FAQs based on Ascorbic Acid

Question 1: How to produce ascorbic acid?


Utilizing fermented maize syrup imported from China—which may or may not be genetically altered synthetic vitamin C (also known as ascorbic acid) is produced. After that, solvents such acetone, sulfuric acid, or sodium hydroxide are used to treat the corn syrup in order to extract the ascorbic acid.

Question 2: Does ascorbic acid increase the acidity of the stomach?


Due to its high acidity, ascorbic acid can have severe adverse effects on the digestive system when consumed on an empty stomach . Ascorbic acid has a low pH, thus calcium ascorbate (a neutralised form of vitamin C) was developed to lessen the adverse affect on the epigastric region.

Question 3: Which foods contain a lot of ascorbic acids?


Broccoli, cantaloupe, cauliflower, kale, kiwi, orange juice, papaya, red, green, and yellow pepper, sweet potatoes, strawberries, and tomatoes are among the foods high in vitamin C.

Question 4: Ascorbic acid is a potent reducing agent, so why?


Ascorbate acts as an electron donor, which explains for all of its known physiological and biochemical functions. AscH is an effective antioxidant and reducing agent because of its ability to donate one or two electrons.

Question 5: Why is ascorbic acid soluble in water?


Ascorbic acid is a cyclic polar molecule, and its solubility rises in greater polarity solvent systems. When miscible cosolvents are added to the original solvent (water), the overall polarity is effectively reduced.

My Personal Notes arrow_drop_up
Like Article
Save Article
Related Articles

Start Your Coding Journey Now!