In this post we look at Vitamins and what they can do for you.

We start with Vitamins, which come can be fat or water soluble. It is possible to take too much fat soluble vitamins as they are stored in your body longer but unlikely that you would be able to do so. For the average person the cost would be prohibitive and in addition you would feel bloated before it happened.

Vitamins: The oil based ones are A D E and K.

Good eye sight depends on vitamin A as does the soft tissues and your skin (which is not just there to keep your internal organs in but is your largest organ. Beta-carotene converts to vitamin A in your body. It keeps your joints lubricated.

It is found in butter, egg yolk, liver, kidney, green vegetables and yellow/red fruits and yellow/orange vegetables.

The most dependable source of D is sunlight, but here the risk is getting burnt or skin cancer. Lack of Vitamin D causes rickets, as it acts on Calcium (a mineral – of which below) to make and maintain your bones. It is needed for healthy bones and teeth.

Vitamin E first came to prominence when tests were done with it in connection with heart attacks. It also prevents degeneration of the kidneys and general wasting symptoms. It an antioxidant, and protects cells from free radicals and peroxides. It can help to prevent cancers , when taken with selenium, and seems to reduce the unwanted side effects of radiotherapy and chemotherapy. It is benefits womens reproductive system, preventing miscarriages, etc.

Ir is found in wheatgerm, soya, corn and peanut oils, margarine (but not hydrogenated, which no one should eat), raw nuts and seeds, eggs, butter, yams, liver and some green leafy vegetables.

Deficiency of Vitamin K, may prevent the blood from clotting properly, and trigger the development of osteoporosis, as it is required for calcium to form new bone. People with conditions that prevent the proper absorption of fat may have a deficiency, as may alcoholics and anyone who doesn’t eat sufficient green vegetables. Prolonged use of antibiotics also reduces the body’s ability to make vitamin K.

It is found in green vegetables, seaweed, potaotes, liver, eggs, wheatgerm, fish, nuts, alfalfa, molasses, yoghurt, dairy products, corn oil and soya oil.

Vitamins: Water Soluable

Vitamin B is a group of vitamins rather than one each one with a different function. They are also found in different foods.

There are eight of them and they are all water soluble. They work together to boost metabolism, enhance the immune system and nervous system, keep the skin and muscles healthy, encourage cell growth and division, and other benefits to your body. Brewer’s yeast is one of the best sources of the B vitamins.

B1 (thiamine), is a catalyst in carbohydrate metabolism and helps synthesize nerve-regulating substances. It stops: your heart from swelling, leg cramps, and muscular weakness. Rich food sources high in thiamine include liver, heart, and kidney meats, eggs, leafy green vegetables, nuts, legumes, berries, wheat germs, and enriched cereals.

B2 (riboflavin), helps metabolize fats, carbohydrates, and respiratory proteins. Prevents skin lesions and light sensitivity. They are abundant in mushrooms, milk, meat, liver, dark green vegetables, and enriched cereals, pasta, and bread. It is good for the skin, nails, eyes, mouths, lips, and tongue, and it is believed to help protect against cancer.

B3 (niacin, vitamin P, or vitamin PP) helps release energy from nutrients. It can reduce cholesterol and prevent and treat arteriosclerosis, among other benefits. Too little B3 can result in pellagra, a disease with Provigil pharmacy symptoms that include sunburn, diarrhea, irritability, swollen tongue, and mental confusion. Too much B3 can result in liver damage. Food sources rich in niacin are chicken, salmon, tuna, liver, nuts, dried peas, enriched cereals, and dried beans.

B5 (Pantothenic acid), has a role in the metabolism of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins. It is most abundant in eggs, whole grain cereals, legumes, and meat, although it is found in some quantity in nearly every food. Deficiency can result in fatigue, allergies, nausea, and abdominal pain.

Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), helps the body to absorb and metabolize amino acids, to use fats, and to form red blood cells. Deficiency in the vitamin may result in smooth tongue, skin disorders, dizziness, nausea, anemia, convulsions, and kidney stones. Whole grains, bread, liver, green beans, spinach, avocadoes, and bananas are rich food sources that are high in this vitamin.

B7 (Biotin or vitamin H), helps form fatty acids and assists in the release of energy from carbohydrates. There have been no cases of deficiency among humans.

B9, (folic acid), sometimes goes by the name of vitamin M or vitamin B-c. Folic acid enables the body to form hemoglobin. It helps treat anemia and sprue. Good food sources include leafy green vegetables, nuts, whole grains, legumes, and organ meets. However, bear in mind that folic acid is lost when foods are stored at room temperature or cooked. Deficiency is rare, although folic

acid is particularly important in pregnancy. Consuming adequate folic acid before and during pregnancy helps prevent neural tube defects in newborns, including spina bifida. The RDA for both men and women is 400 micrograms, but women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant should consume 600 micrograms a day. When breastfeeding, the recommendation is 500 micrograms.

Vitamin (B12, also known as Cobalamin or Cyanocobalamin), assists the function of the nervous system and the formation of red blood cells. If the body is unable to absorb sufficient B12, pernicious anemia can result. B12 can only be found in animal sources such as eggs, milk, fish, meat, and liver. Therefore, vegetarians are strongly encouraged to supplement.

Vitamin C is another water soluable vitamin. Its importance was realised when sailors on long journies went down with scurvey, which is caused by lack of vitamin C. But once again you have to ensure that it is derived from natural sources, whether you get it from food direct or from a supplement. We know this because when the drug companies manufactured Vitamin C by extracting what they thought was the active ingredient they found that it did not work and in the end they had to put in over 100 active ingredients. The lesson we can learn from this is that Vitamins must be natural.

In this post we looked at Vitamins and what they can do for you, in the next one we will look at Minerals.

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