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Vitamins are biological components in food that are needed in very minor quantities for growth and for maintaining good health. Vitamins help our bodies grow and develop normally. The best way to get enough vitamins is to eat a properly balanced diet with a variety of foods. They help to regulate the chemical reactions that the body utilizes to convert food into energy and tissue. vitamins are very compulsory in our regular diet because the human body cannot synthesize them quickly sufficient to meet our everyday needs. Vitamins are very necessary for such various functions as forming red blood cells, which helps to fight against several unwanted infections.
Characteristics of Vitamins
Vitamins have 3 features:
- Vitamins are organic components of foods which are usually present in very minor quantities.
- It is very essential for normal physiologic function (for example, growth, immunity, bones, and reproduction etc).
- When vitamins are not present in the regular diet, they will cause a specific disease.
Types of Vitamins
Vitamins are commonly classified into 2 types:
- Water Soluble
- Fat Soluble
Water Soluble Vitamins
A vitamin that can dissolve in water. Water-soluble vitamins are not stored in the body but carried to body tissue. These vitamins are basically found in plant and animal foods or dietary supplements and must be taken in daily. We need a regular consumption of this vitamin because it usually excretes the excess in your urine.
Types of Water Soluble Vitamins
There are a total of nine water-soluble vitamins:
- Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)
- Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)
- Vitamin B3 (Niacin)
- Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)
- Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)
- Vitamin B9 (Folic acid)
- Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)
- Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid)
- Vitamin H (Biotin)
Fat Soluble Vitamins
Fat-soluble vitamins will not dissolve in water. Instead, fat-soluble vitamins absorb best when taken with higher-fat foods. Once absorbed into the body, fat-soluble vitamins are stored in fatty tissues and liver that can easily travel through the lymphatic system of the small intestines and into the general blood circulation within the body.
Types of Fat-Soluble Vitamins
There are four types of fat soluble vitamins:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin D
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin K
Health Benefits of Vitamins
There are several health benefits of vitamins in the body which include:
- Prevent Heart diseases
- Treatment of high cholesterol levels
- eye and skin disorders
- help shore up bones
- heal wounds
- boost immune system
Deficiency Due to Lack of Vitamins
The four most common diseases due to lack of Vitamins are as follows:
- Scurvy: A condition which is caused by a severe lack of vitamin C from the diet. The common signs of Scurvy are general malaise and lethargy, progressing on to the spotty skin, losing teeth, and bleeding and swollen gums. Slow wound healing and general weakness a regular symptom of this disease is slow healing of wounds and general weakness. If this disease left untreated it can be fatal.
- Rickets: a condition caused due to the deficiency of vitamin D from the diet.
- Beriberi: a condition in which a person is suffering from the deficiency of Vitamin B1. The common symptoms include numbness and tingling in hands and feet, memory loss, the problem in breathing, possible paralysis, the problem in speaking, confusion, and depression.
- Pellagra: a condition in which dark patches occur on the face, neck, hands, calves, and feet due to vitamins deficiency. The common signs include constipation, diarrhea, nausea or vomiting. In this condition, the mouth and tongue get red, swollen and develop sores.
Common Cause of Vitamin Deficiency
There are some other factors that may give rise to these conditions which are as follows:
- Diets low in fat reduces the absorption of vitamin E.
- Alcohol consumption has a direct impact on folic acid levels.
- Medications can also cause the deficiency of vitamins from the body.
- There are certain antibiotics such as isoniazid which can cause the deficiency of Vitamin B6.
Deficiency of vitamins can effect to both mild and deadly in effect. It is always a better choice to include a healthy eating routine to avoid deficiencies of all essential vitamins.
“It is Health that is real
Not pieces of Gold and Silver”