Do you know what is sailor’s curse?
In olden days, when sailors went on long voyages, they often returned with swollen gums, broken tooth and patchy skins. This was commonly known as sailor’s curse and scientifically as scurvy.
So, what is scurvy?
Scurvy is a condition caused by a severe lack of vitamin C in the diet. Vitamin C is found in citrus fruits and vegetables like lemons and oranges. Scurvy results from a deficiency of vitamin C in the diet.
So, the sailors did not eat fruits or vegetables rich in vitamin C for many months, while they were at sea. This caused a deficiency of this vitamin which resulted in them getting affected by scurvy.
1. Many sailors who had scurvy, used to collapse and die.
2. Half to three quarters of a ship crew would die of scurvy.
3. More sailors died of scurvy than of battle wounds.
In the eighteenth century, a British surgeon, James Lind, first discovered that scurvy was caused due to lack of Vitamin C in the diet.
Following this discovery, sailors started carrying oranges and lemons with them on voyages, as a result of which, scurvy became rare.
Did you like this fact? Do you know any such fact? Write it in the comments section. I’ll be posting more such facts on every Friday. Till then, take care!
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