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Vitamins are small organic compounds that our body needs to carry out various biochemical reactions related to the normal metabolic activities of our body. A small part of these compounds are synthesized in our body, so we need to get them with food or as food supplements. The need to take vitamins as supplements is because we can not always get the required daily amount from food.

Nowadays, vitamin deficiency is rare in most people. Of course, there are exceptions for people with special diseases or those who do not consume sufficient amounts of fresh fruits and vegetables. However, it is good to know what vitamins are used for and in what quantities we should consume them daily. I need to mention that the requirements of vitamins ​​for people who workout are higher than for those who do not.

Vitamins are necessary for the normal course of a number of biochemical reactions in the body. There is virtually no reaction in which they do not participate. Most water-soluble vitamins are involved in the composition of enzymes that catalyze biochemical reactions. Therefore, although in small quantities, vitamins have a great influence on metabolism. They are also needed for – the growth of cells and tissues, the function of the endocrine glands, the liver and the immune system, and others.

Absorption of vitamins.

Fat-soluble vitamins.

These are vitamins A, K, D, E. Our body stores these vitamins in adipose tissue and in the liver. These reserves can remain in our bodies for days to months. The intake of fats (omega 3, 6, 9) with food helps to absorb fat-soluble vitamins.

Water-soluble vitamins.

These are vitamin C and all B vitamins. The fact that these vitamins are water-soluble means that they are not stored in our bodies. They are excreted from our body in the urine. For this reason, it is necessary to take them regularly with food and as a dietary supplement.

What happens when we take too many or not enough vitamins?

With vitamins, as with any other substance, there are problems with overuse or insufficient amounts. Three conditions are observed here: Hypo-, hyper-, and avitaminosis. Hypovitaminosis is an insufficient amount of a vitamin. Avitaminosis is a complete lack, and hypervitaminosis is an excess. The first two conditions are more common with water-soluble vitamins, but we may also have hypervitaminosis. Fat-soluble vitamins are more likely to be in excess due to the fact that they accumulate in our bodies.

In the following lines, I will pay attention to each of the 13 vitamins. I will explain what their function is, in what quantities we should take them, what can happen if we overdo or do not take enough of them.

Vitamin A – retinol (fat-soluble)

This vitamin is essential for our body because it supports growth and development, reproduction, the immune system, vision, and more. It also helps the normal function of the heart, kidneys, and liver.

There are several forms of it – provitamin A (found in plants), retinol (the main active form of vitamin A in the blood), beta-carotene (found in dark leafy plants). Beta-carotene is an antioxidant that can be converted to vitamin A in our body.

Vitamin A promotes a number of body functions, such as – helps the growth of all tissues in the body, reduces the risk of cancer, reduces the risk of fertility problems in humans, reduces the risk of infections.

You can get this vitamin from the following sources – eggs, milk and dairy products, animal trifles, oily fish, pumpkin, carrots, mangoes.

Recommended daily dose of 700 to 800 mcg. for adults.

Buy this vitamin as a dietary supplement from HERE.

Vitamin B1 – thiamine (water-soluble)

This vitamin is important for glucose metabolism. It activates our body to use carbohydrates for energy. It also helps to improve the function of the heart, muscles, and nerves.

Thiamine helps prevent problems with the nervous system, brain, muscles, heart. It is also involved in the exchange of electrolytes in the muscles.

Thiamine can be obtained from pork, beef, eggs, potatoes, asparagus, cauliflower, nuts. This vitamin is easily soluble in boiling water. Excessive cooking of food containing thiamine destroys it.

Recommended daily dose of 1.2 mg. for adults.

Buy this vitamin as a dietary supplement from HERE.

Vitamin B2 – riboflavin (water-soluble)

Riboflavin helps to break down nutrients, absorb them and maintain tissues. It plays an important role in maintaining the body’s energy reserves. It also helps maintain a healthy liver, eyes, nerves, muscles, skin, helps maintain the membrane of the digestive system, and more.

Foods that contain this vitamin are fish, meat, eggs, dairy products, asparagus, sweet potatoes, mushrooms, nuts, pumpkin, avocado, artichoke.

Recommended daily dose from 1.1 to 1.3 mg. for adults.

Buy this vitamin as a dietary supplement from HERE.

Vitamin B3 – niacin (water soluble)

B3 helps our body to process fats and proteins, convert them into energy, and keeps the skin, hair, and nervous system in good condition. Other potential properties of this vitamin are antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.

This vitamin is also found under other names, such as PP or nicotinamide. It is water-soluble and therefore our body does not retain it and excretes it through the urine. We need to take it with food or as a supplement daily.

Sources of this vitamin are beef, turkey, chicken, salmon, brown rice, peanuts.

Recommended daily dose of 14 to 16 mg. for adults.

Buy this vitamin as a dietary supplement from HERE.

Vitamin B5 – pantothenic acid (water-soluble)

This vitamin is used by our body to process and synthesize protein, fat, and coenzyme A. It is also used to form red blood cells, certain hormones, and cholesterol. Vitamin B5 helps form a healthier digestive system and the synthesis of other vitamins.

Lack of this vitamin in our body is extremely rare. Signs of its absence may be vomiting, sleep problems, nausea, muscle cramps, burning in the legs.

This vitamin can be obtained from the following foods: fish and fish products, pork, beef, duck, whole grains, dairy eggs, mushrooms, avocados, broccoli.

Recommended daily dose of 5 mg. for adults.

Buy this vitamin as a dietary supplement from HERE.

Vitamin B6 – pyridoxine (water-soluble)

Pyridoxine helps in the synthesis of dopamine and serotonin and helps the central nervous system to work better. It promotes the production of blood cells and improves the function of neurotransmitters and cells in our body.

Nutritional sources of this vitamin are chickpeas, beef liver, tuna, potatoes, bananas, tofu, rice, onions, spinach, watermelon.

The recommended daily dose is 1.3 mg. for adults.

Buy this vitamin as a dietary supplement from HERE.

Vitamin B7 – biotin (water-soluble)

This vitamin is used for the absorption of fats and carbohydrates in our body. It helps in the synthesis of fatty acids, the amino acids isoleucine and valine, and the generation of glucose. Helps the normal course of pregnancy, improves the health of nails, hair, and skin, helps reduce blood sugar.

Biotin is found in the following foods: yeast, meat, mussels, eggs, cheddar cheese, sweet potatoes, nuts.

The recommended daily dose is 30 mcg. for adults.

Buy this vitamin as a dietary supplement from HERE.

Vitamin B9 – folic acid (water soluble)

Folic acid is extremely important for pregnant women. It is recommended as a dietary supplement and most doctors advise eating foods rich in B9 in combination with the supplement. During pregnancy, this vitamin helps reduce the risk of congenital anomalies of the fetus. It also helps reduce depression, improves heart function, and reduces the risk of cancer.

The best sources of vitamin B9 are fresh vegetables and fruits because much of it is lost during cooking. The best sources are asparagus, beans, lentils, spinach, lettuce, avocados, broccoli, mushrooms, bananas, eggs.

The recommended daily dose is 400 mcg. for adults.

Buy this vitamin as a dietary supplement from HERE.

Vitamin B12 – cobalamin (water-soluble)

This vitamin is extremely important for our body. It is involved in the building of red blood cells, the work of nerve and brain tissue. Helps build DNA. It is involved in the metabolism of every single cell in our body.

This vitamin, like the rest of crude B, is water-soluble but can be stored in our body for up to 4 years. Excess is excreted in the urine.

Dietary sources of vitamin B12 are pork, fish, beef, eggs, dairy products.

The recommended daily dose is 2.4 mcg. for adults.

Buy this vitamin as a dietary supplement from HERE.

Vitamin C – ascorbic acid (water-soluble)

This vitamin is known to support the immune system and its use is recommended in flu seasons. In addition to the immune system, it improves wound healing, has antioxidant properties, helps the body form collagen. It can help slow muscle degeneration with aging. One study showed that it can help lower blood glucose levels after a meal in people with diabetes.

There is no evidence that vitamin C can help treat colds. Boosting immunity with it can prevent disease or help the disease run more smoothly. Take more than 200 mg. per day helps against muscle fever or in people who have low levels of vitamin C due to smoking.

This vitamin is widespread and can be found in fruits and vegetables. Many of the natural juices on the market are loaded with vitamin C. The best sources are red peppers, orange, grapefruit, strawberries, kiwi.

Recommended daily dose of 70 to 80 mg. for adults.

Buy this vitamin as a dietary supplement from HERE.

Vitamin D – calciferol (fat-soluble)

Vitamin D is not exactly a vitamin, but a prohormone. All vitamins are substances that cannot be synthesized in our bodies. However, this is not the case with this vitamin. It is produced by our body thanks to the sun’s rays. This vitamin helps for healthier teeth and bones, improves the work of the immune, nervous system, and brain. Helps regulate insulin, improves lung function and the cardiovascular system.

A study has shown that vitamin D has a protective effect against the flu. However, more research is needed to confirm this thesis, because there were people in the study who did not have such effects.

Read more about the effects of vitamin D on the brain HERE.

Sources of vitamin D are fish, cheese, eggs, milk, mushrooms.

Recommended daily dose of 5 to 15 mcg. for adults.

Buy this vitamin as a dietary supplement from HERE.

Vitamin E – tocopherols (fat-soluble)

This vitamin helps our body to function, so it is indispensable for us. It is fat-soluble and our body accumulates reserves in the liver. Usually, people do not suffer from its lack, but we can suffer from a genetic deficiency. This condition can be passed down through the generations.

Signs of vitamin E deficiency can include muscle weakness, dizziness, disorientation, and immune system problems.

We can get this vitamin from the following foods: vegetable oils, nuts, milk, and most vegetables.

Recommended daily dose of 15 mg. for adults.

Buy this vitamin as a dietary supplement from HERE.

Vitamin K – phylloquinone (fat-soluble)

This vitamin exists in two forms. The main form is obtained from vegetables (K1) and the other from local products (K2). It plays a role in bone metabolism and the regulation of calcium in the blood. Because it is fat-soluble, we need to eat fat to better absorb it. Vitamin K deficiency in the blood is rare because it is stored in our body.

Vitamin K can be obtained from parsley, spinach, soy, grapes, eggs.

Recommended daily dose of 60 to 70 mcg. for adults.

Buy this vitamin as a dietary supplement from HERE.

There are also so-called multivitamins, which are complex supplements. In most cases, they contain the full range of vitamins. They are not always the best option, because it is very rare that we need all the vitamins.

If, however, it is impossible to eat a varied and complete diet or you can not get enough vitamins from food, it is good to get them as a dietary supplement.

Vitamins are essential for the proper functioning of our body. We do not need to take vitamin supplements if we eat a varied diet. If you still want to take vitamin supplements, make sure they are water-soluble, not fat-soluble. Always consult a doctor before taking supplements.

Read about magnesium HERE.

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Categories: Nutrients

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