Health is perhaps on the most important aspects in all our life. Since the ancient times till this modern era of civilization, high importance have been given to health and utilizing the resources that we have all around to stay healthy and be prepared for any situation at any moment in life.
Vitamins are one such aspect that is required to maintain and sustain optimal health. Studies from diet clinic say that these vitamins impacts our functionality in various ways like improving our immune and nervous system, maintaining good health of our hairs and skins, improve our brain functionality, proper eyesight, take care of our liver and lungs, cell repair and growth, build-up of our muscles and tissues and many more.
What are vitamins?
Vitamins and as well minerals are those organic substances that our body required in small quantities, but crucial to stay healthy and work properly. There are 13 essential vitamins and are divided into two groups: the fat-soluble and the water-soluble ones.
The Fat-Soluble Vitamins:
Did you know? Vitamin A, D, E and K are fat soluble vitamins. Fat soluble are the ones that bind with the body fat and stored in the body for later use. Generally, in rare circumstances only we have deficiency of this vitamin group. But at the same time, if these vitamins are over consumed, it may reach to toxic levels and can be harmful for the human body.
The Water Soluble Vitamins:
Biotin, niacin, folic acid, pantothenic acid, vitamin C and the four B complex vitamins are water soluble vitamins. Water soluble vitamins are absorbed by the cells directly and the extra is not stored in the body and flushed out through urination.
Understanding Fat Soluble Vitamins
As mentioned earlier – vitamin A, D, E and K are the fat soluble vitamins. Fatty foods and oils are the biggest sources of these group of vitamins. The fatty tissues and the liver hold these vitamins and use them as and when required.
Unlike directly getting into the blood stream alike the water soluble one, these vitamins enter our bloodstream through the lymph channel and travels the entire body via proteins that works as its carrier.
Fat soluble vitamins are needed in the body for:
- Aids bone build-up, no bones would be formed ion the body without the aid of vitamin A, D and K.
- Helps in protecting the body. Vitamin E works as an anti-oxidant, preventing the body from the damages from free radicals and unstable harmful molecules.
- Improves vision. Vitamin A helps protecting vision by keeping our cells healthy and in good condition.
- Supports each other. Without adequate supply of vitamin E, the body would not be able to absorb vitamin A.
Good food sources:-
Vitamin A: dairy products, orange and yellow colored fruits and vegetables.
Vitamin D: cod liver oil, fatty fish, fortified juices, milk, and cereals.
Vitamin E: vegetable oils, avocados, spinach, seeds and nuts, and whole grains.
Vitamin K: green leafy vegetables.
Understanding Water Soluble Vitamins
B vitamins: Biotin (vitamin B7) / Folic acid (folate, vitamin B9) / Niacin (vitamin B3) / Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5) / Riboflavin (vitamin B2) / Thiamin (vitamin B1) / Vitamin B6 / Vitamin B12 and Vitamin C, are all water soluble vitamins.
These vitamins are present in the foods that we eat and after consuming them, they are broken down during the digestion process or dissolves. As our body is majorly constituted of water, these vitamins easily moves in the entire body and are absorbed wherever they are needed. Our kidneys monitors and controls these vitamins and the excesses is flushed out of our body.
Water soluble vitamins are needed by the body for:
- Release energy from the food we eat. Some of the B vitamins perform this function.
- Produce energy for the body. Vitamin B1, B2. B3, B5 and B7 are all engaged in this process.
- Helps cell multiplication. Amino acids – the building blocks of proteins, are metabolized by vitamin B6, B12 and B9 and helps cell multiplication.
- Helps make collagen. Vitamin C helps making collagen that is much required for healing wounds, build strong bones and teeth and supporting the wall of the blood vessels.
Good food sources:
As per the best dietitian in Delhi for weight loss the rich source for vitamins are:
Vitamin B7: avocados, salmon, nuts and seeds.
Vitamin B9: cereals, okra, asparagus, spinach.
Vitamin B3: poultry, fish, fortified whole grains, mushrooms.
Vitamin B5: chicken, egg yolk, broccoli, mushrooms.
Vitamin B2: milk, eggs, yoghurt, cheese, green vegetables.
Vitamin B1: brown rice, soy milk, water melon.
Vitamin B6: meat, fish, poultry, legumes, tofu.
Vitamin B12: meat, poultry, eggs, milk, cheese.
Vitamin C: fruits and vegetables.