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Vitamins; A Reference Guide

Introduction

All natural vitamins are organic food substances found only in living things, that is, plants and animals. In some circumstances, the body can manufacture or synthesize vitamins provided that all the essential elements are present. They normally found in the diet or in dietary supplements. Vitamins are essential to the normal functioning of our bodies. They are necessary for our growth, vitality, and general well-being.

HOW THEY WORK: A lot of people think vitamins can replace food. They cannot. In fact, vitamins are a part of, and cannot be absorbed without ingesting food. if you take vitamin supplements, take them with other food. Vitamins help regulate metabolism, help convert fat and carbohydrates into energy, and assist in forming bone and tissue.

In time we will be adding looking at our vitamins, how the affect us and how we obtain them.

VITAMIN A (Beta Carotene)
IMPORTANCE: Necessary for growth & repair of body tissues; Retinol a form of vitamin A helps maintain smooth, soft disease-free skin; helps protect the mucous membranes of the mouth, nose , throat & lungs, thereby reducing susceptibility to infections; protects against air pollutants; counteracts night-blindness & weak eyesight; aids in bone and teeth formation. Current medical research shows that foods rich in Beta Carotene will help reduce the risk of lung cancer & certain oral cancers. Unlike Vitamin A from fish liver oil, Beta Carotene is non-toxic.

DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May result in night blindness; increased susceptibility to infections; rough, dry, scaly skin; loss of smell & appetite; frequents fatigue; lack of tearing; defective teeth & gums' retarded growth.

VITAMIN B-1 (Thiamin)
IMPORTANCE: Plays a key role in the body's metabolic cycle for generating energy; aids in the digestion of carbohydrates; essential for the normal functioning of the nervous system, muscles & heart; stabilizes the appetite; promotes growth & good muscle tone.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May lead to the loss of appetite ; weakness & feeling tired; paralysis & nervous irritability; insomnia; loss of weight; vague aches & pains; mental depression & constipation; heart & gastrointestinal problems.

VITAMIN B-2 (Riboflavin)
IMPORTANCE: Necessary for carbohydrate, fat & protein metabolism; aids in the formation of antibodies and red blood cells; maintains cell respiration; necessary for the maintenance of good vision, skin, nails & hair; alleviates eye fatigue; promotes general health.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May result in itching and burning eyes; cracks and sores in the mouth & lips; bloodshot eyes; purplish tongue; dermatitis; retarded growth; digestive disturbances; trembling; sluggishness; oily skin.

VITAMIN B-6 (Pyridoxine)
IMPORTANCE: Necessary for the synthesis & breakdown of amino acids, the building blocks of protein; aids in fat and carbohydrate metabolism; aids in the formation of antibodies; maintains the central nervous system; aids in the removal of excess fluid of premenstrual women; promotes healthy skin; reduces muscle spasms, leg cramps, hand numbness, nausea & stiffness of hands; helps maintain a proper balance of sodium & phosphorous in the body.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May result in nervousness, insomnia, skin eruptions, loss of muscular control, anemia, mouth disorders, muscular weakness, dermatitis, arm & leg cramps, loss of hair, slow learning, and water retention.

VITAMIN B-12 (Cobalamin)
IMPORTANCE: Helps in the formation & regeneration of red blood cells, thus helping prevent anemia; necessary for carbohydrate, fat & protein metabolism; maintains a healthy nervous system; promotes growth in children; increases energy; needed for Calcium absorption.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May lead to pernicious anemia, poor appetite, growth failure in children, tiredness, brain damage, nervousness, neuritis, degeneration of spinal cord, depression, lack of balance.

NIACINAMIDE (Niacin- vitamin B-3)
IMPORTANCE: Improves circulation and reduces the cholesterol level in the blood; maintains the nervous system; helps metabolize protein, sugar & fat; reduces high blood pressure; increases energy through proper utilization of food; prevents pellagra; helps maintain a healthy skin, tongue & digestive system.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May result in pellagra, gastrointestinal disturbance, nervousness, headaches, fatigue, mental depression, vague aches & pains, irritability, loss of appetite, insomnia, skin disorders, muscular weakness, indigestion, bad breath, canker sores.

BIOTIN
IMPORTANCE: Aids in the utilization of protein, folic acid, Pantothenic acid, and Vitamin B-12, promotes healthy hair.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May lead to extreme exhaustion, drowsiness, muscle pain, loss of appetite, depression, grayish skin color. brCHOLINE
IMPORTANCE: Very important in controlling fat & cholesterol buildup in the body; prevents fat from accumulating in the liver; facilitates the movement of fats in the cells; helps regulate the kidneys, liver & gallbladder; important for nerve transmission; helps improve memory.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May result in cirrhosis and fatty degeneration of the liver, hardening of the arteries, heart problems, high blood pressure, hemorrhaging kidneys.

VITAMIN C (Ascorbic Acid)
IMPORTANCE: Essential for healthy teeth, gums & Bones; helps heal wounds, scar tissue, & Fractures; prevents scurvy; builds resistance to infection; aids in the prevention & treatment of the common cold; gives strength to blood vessels; aids in the absorption of iron. It is required for the synthesis of collagen, the intercellular "cement" which holds tissues together. It is also one of the major antioxidant nutrients. It prevents the conversion of nitrates (from tobacco smoke, smog, bacon, lunch meats, & some vegetables) into cancer-causing substances. According to Dr. Lines Pauling, the foremost authority on Vitamin C, Vitamin C will decrease the risk of getting certain cancers by 75%.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May lead to soft & bleeding gums, swollen or painful joints, slow-healing wounds & fractures, bruising, nosebleeds, tooth decay, loss of appetite, muscular weakness, skin hemorrhages, capillary weakness, anemia, impaired digestion.

VITAMIN D
IMPORTANCE: Improves absorption and utilization of Calcium and Phosphorous; required for bone and teeth formation; maintains a stable nervous system and normal heart action.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May lead to rickets, tooth decay, softening of bones, improper healing of fractures, lack of vigor, muscular weakness, inadequate absorption of calcium, retention of phosphorous in the kidneys.

FOLIC ACID
IMPORTANCE: Necessary for DNA & RNA synthesis, which is essential for the growth and reproduction of all body cells; essential to the formation of red blood cells by its action on the bone marrow; aids in amino acid metabolism.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May result in gastrointestinal disorders, anemia, Vitamin B-12 deficiency, pre-mature gray hair.

INOSITOL
IMPORTANCE: Necessary for the formation of lecithin; aids in the breakdown of fats; helps reduce blood cholesterol; helps prevent thinning hair.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May result in high blood cholesterol, constipation, eczema, hair loss.

PABA (Para Amino Benzoic Acid)
IMPORTANCE: Aids healthy bacteria in producing folic acid; aids in the formation of red blood cells; contains sun screening properties; aids in the assimilation of Pantothenic acid; returns hair to its natural color.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May cause extreme fatigue, eczema, irritability, depressions, nervousness, constipation, headaches, digestive disorders, hair turning prematurely gray.

PANTOTHENIC ACID
IMPORTANCE: Participates in the release of energy from carbohydrates, fats & protein, aids in the utilization of vitamins; improves the body's resistance to stress; helps in cell building & the development of the central nervous system; helps the adrenal glands, fights infections by building antibodies.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May lead to painful & burning feet, skin abnormalities, retarded growth, dizzy spells, digestive disturbances, vomiting, restlessness, stomach stress, muscle cramps.




Index
Vitamin E
Retinol



 
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