The A, B, C’s of Vitamins

The A, B, C’s of Vitamins

Vitamins are essential. They are needed to regulate metabolism and functioning of the body. While some vitamins can be found in foods or in small doses already within the body, other vitamins can be found in specialty products that can be taken as a dietary supplement. What are the main vitamins needed and how do they benefit the body?

Vitamin A or carotene is usually found in fish oil, eggs, carrots, dark green vegetables and in yellow fruits. This vitamin is fat-soluble and promotes healthy bone and hair growth. Vitamin A also aids in night vision, tooth development and reproduction. A person who suffers from a deficiency in Vitamin A can develop forms of night blindness as well as a susceptibility to infections.

Vitamin B is a complex, water-soluble vitamin that contains trivalent cobalt and is found in the liver. Although the vitamins can be used to boost energy levels in the body, they are primarily used to promote the function of the nervous system. A person’s levels of Vitamin B can diminish with stress, illness, alcohol, caffeine or processed foods and/or sugars.

Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is not produced or stored in the body. Therefore, the vitamin must be replenished in the body. Besides dietary supplements, Vitamin C can be found in fruits and vegetables such as tomatoes, oranges and other citrus fruits. The vitamin is used to support the immune system and healthy vision as well as cardiovascular, bone and muscle health.

Most people are familiar with Vitamin D. This fat-soluble vitamin regulates the levels of calcium and phosphorus in the intestines. Vitamin D is found in milk, eggs and in other specialty products. A deficiency in Vitamin D can cause a number of effects. Rickets, a deformity of the bones, is common in children who lack the required levels of Vitamin D.

Vitamin E is probably the most essential vitamin. Found in fats, oils, meats and poultry, this vitamin supports the immune system by preventing oxidation of fatty acids and Vitamin A in the cells. A person lacking the body’s required amounts of Vitamin E may experience muscular dystrophy or sterility.

Fish, green vegetables and specialty products can also be a good source of Vitamin K. This vitamin is needed to insure blood clotting and the production of prothrombin in the liver. Anemia, nosebleeds, fractures and osteoporosis can occur if a person’s diet does not have the recommended amounts of Vitamin K.

Vitamins are needed to maintain a healthy body. A person lacking a vitamin in his or her dietary plan may consider taking a specialty product, such as a dietary supplement, to offset a deficiency.

http://www.bhia.org/articles/specialty-products/vitaminbasics.html

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