Vitamins are a group of compounds with diverse structures that are essential for the proper functioning of our body. The influence of vitamins on the human body is enormous. Vitamins are essential for proper vision, bone development, blood flow, growth and immunity. They are responsible for the state of our psyche and concentration. If at least one of them is absent, various kinds of disorders appear, manifested by a number of different health ailments.
Vitamins are involved in countless processes that constantly occur in the body. Without them, it is impossible to stay healthy in the long run. Deficiency of any of them can contribute to the emergence of many unpleasant ailments and disorders in the body and the development of very serious diseases.
Most of them the human body does not have the ability to synthesize. Only vitamin D3 is able to penetrate the body through the skin under the influence of solar radiation. Since the body is not able to produce vitamins on its own, they must come from food – to ensure proper and varied nutrition.
Note! Most vitamins are found in vegetables and fruits. If they are thermally processed, the high temperature destroys them almost completely. It should also be taken into account that even the most expensive vitamin supplements are not as well absorbed by the body as in their natural form, i.e. from fresh produce.
Vitamins are divided into two groups: water soluble or fat soluble. Excess water-solubles are excreted in the urine and are difficult to overdose. Fat-solubles can accumulate in tissues, which can be dangerous in excessive amounts.
Note! Both hypervitaminosis (an excess of vitamins) and beriberi (vitamin deficiency) are abnormal and can be dangerous to health and even life. With a lack of vitamins, even mental problems can occur. Very often beriberi contributes to anxiety and depression, insomnia or chronic fatigue. This abnormal state is felt by almost all our organs.
Known species. The role of vitamins in the body and the consequences of their deficiency
Vitamins and minerals are important for maintaining good health. If these essential nutrients are lacking, we can experience a variety of symptoms. Nutrient deficiencies can be caused by a variety of problems, including poor diet, comorbidities, and medications that prevent the body from absorbing nutrients.
Fat-soluble vitamins should be used with caution.
Vitamin A (retinol, beta-carotene, provitamin A) has a great influence on the condition and appearance of the skin. It is essential for good vision and a strong immune system. This vitamin supports the production of hormones and is essential for the processes responsible for bone formation. It reduces the risk of developing heart disease and cancer, and its deficiency leads to dryness and keratinization of the skin, brittle nails and poor vision.
Vitamin A is found mainly in animal products: milk, butter, liver, fish, eggs, cheese. Provitamins (carotenoids) can be found in some plants, such as carrots, pumpkins, tomatoes, apricots, spinach, parsley, dill, or peas. By eliminating these foods from our diet, we are exposed to significant vitamin A deficiency, which can lead to beriberi.
Vitamin D ensures the proper development and condition of bones and teeth, and also has an immunomodulatory effect. Vitamin D is converted to a provitamin under the action of UV rays, and then to a vitamin.
Vitamin D is found in whole milk, egg yolks, butter, vegetable oils and animal fats, mushrooms and yeast. oily fish. Vitamin D deficiency manifests itself in winter and spring, when the number of sunny days is low. There is a deterioration in the condition of the skin, problems with visual acuity, diarrhea, insomnia and fatigue. Symptoms of a vitamin D overdose are rare.
Vitamin E is considered one of the most important antioxidants in our cells. In addition to its protective role, it ensures the proper functioning of blood vessels and red blood cells, affects blood clotting and prevents cardiovascular diseases. and reduces the risk of developing cancer.
Sources of vitamin E include milk, eggs, butter, vegetable oil, fish, wheat germ, whole grain bread, nuts, and green leafy vegetables. Due to the ubiquitous presence of vitamin E in many foods in our diet, it is rarely deficient. Deficiency results in general weakness, dryness and lethargy of the skin, as well as age spots. and growth disorders. Excess vitamin E is also rare.
Vitamin K – phylloquinone plays a very important role in the process of blood clotting, is involved in the processes of synthesis in the liver and the metabolism of the entire skeletal system. Its deficiency is associated with bleeding and bowel dysfunction.
Sources are mainly: liver, leafy green vegetables, legumes, tomatoes, avocados, potatoes, yogurt, eggs, strawberries. In addition, vitamin K is synthesized by intestinal bacteria and regenerated in the liver.
Water Soluble Vitamins
Note! A large group consists of water-soluble vitamins. Their use is safer as their excess is excreted in the urine. However, never increase the dosage of vitamins, follow the instructions on the package.
Vitamin C or ascorbic acid is one of the strongest antioxidants. This is one of the most famous vitamins. Ascorbic acid is essential for the proper functioning of the immune system. Protects the body from infections, affects the psyche, has anti-allergic and anti-cancer properties. Vitamin C lowers blood cholesterol levels, strengthens teeth and gums.
A lack of vitamin C in the body causes a weakened immune system, slow healing of wounds and improper fusion of bones, swelling and soreness of the joints, as well as a tendency to bruises, weakness and sometimes increased drowsiness. Vitamin C is found in fresh vegetables and fruits. A large amount is found in rose hips, peppers, kiwi, leeks, raspberries, oranges and other citrus fruits, tomatoes, turnips, Brussels sprouts, black currants, strawberries.
B vitamins perform many important functions in the body, play an important role in numerous metabolic processes. Deficiency of B vitamins can lead to serious illnesses. The use of large amounts of sugar makes it difficult for the absorption of certain groups of vitamins, including group B.
Vitamin B1 (thiamine) is involved in the formation of red blood cells, is necessary for the proper functioning of the fibers that make up the heart, muscles and nervous system. With its lack, problems with concentration appear and diseases of the nervous and digestive systems begin to develop. Thiamine deficiency contributes to muscle weakness, joint pain and lack of appetite. Vitamin B1 is found in foods: nuts, oatmeal, sunflower seeds, dried fruits, nuts, cereals, liver, pork, vegetables and yeast.
Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) ensures the proper functioning of the nervous, respiratory and visual systems. Vitamin B2 deficiency also often causes painful cracking of the corners of the mouth and excessive hair loss, fatigue, sensitivity to light, burning eyes, and dermatitis. Vitamin B2 can be found in fish, eggs, legumes, cereals, leafy vegetables, mushrooms, and yeast.
Vitamin B3 is also known as vitamin PP, niacin or nicotinamide. Necessary for the proper functioning of the nervous and digestive systems, is responsible for maintaining the level of cholesterol and blood sugar at the appropriate level. It also takes part in reduction and oxidation processes. With a lack of vitamin B3, muscle weakness, diarrhea, mental disorders and paralysis of the limbs are manifested. Vitamin B3 in such foods: leafy vegetables, dried peaches, wheat bran, peanuts, liver, eggs, beer, milk, potatoes, poultry, fish, cheese.
Vitamin B5 is called pantothenic acid. Reduces inflammation in the body, slows down cell aging and prevents the formation of wrinkles. Pantothenic acid deficiency contributes to insomnia and fatigue, as well as premature graying, learning problems, joint stiffness, and stunted growth in children. Vitamin B5 can be found in foods such as cereals, eggs, liver, royal jelly, nuts, meat, and broccoli.
Vitamin B6 is called pyridoxine and adermin. It is critical for the production of red blood cells and lymphocytes. In the case of a deficiency of this vitamin, there is a decrease in appetite, inflammation of the skin, increased fatigue, irritability, depression and nausea. Vitamin B6 is present in foods such as beans, bananas, avocados, cereals, nuts, poultry, milk, peas, liver, soybeans, potatoes, tomatoes, yeast, eggs.
Vitamin B7 is a vitamin H that has a great impact on the condition of the skin and bones. In case of its deficiency, skin changes (skin peeling) begin to appear, nails are prone to delamination, and hair begins to fall out more. There is also increased activity of the sebaceous glands and muscle pain. With a lack of vitamin H, an increase in the level of cholesterol in the blood can be observed. Vitamin B7 is found in chocolate, soybeans, peas, liver, eggs.
Vitamin B9 is also called vitamin B11. Folic acid or folacin is involved in hematopoietic processes in the bone marrow. Without this vitamin, the immune and nervous systems do not work properly. Deficiency is manifested by anemia, an increased risk of miscarriage and the development of cardiovascular diseases. With a deficiency of vitamin B9, digestive disorders also occur in the form of diarrhea and malabsorption of nutrients in the intestines.
Vitamin B9 can be found in foods such as Brussels sprouts, carrots, pumpkins, liver, apricots, oranges, and yeast.
Vitamin B12 is also called cobalamin or cyanocobalamin. Without it, the production of new red blood cells and lymphocytes is impossible. It also affects concentration and memory as well as the entire nervous system. Its deficiency is manifested by anemia, fatigue, degeneration of the nervous system? and even loss of sensation in the limbs. Vitamin B12 is present in pork, beef, eggs, green leafy vegetables, cheese, sprouts, rice, yeast.
Healthy skin, hair and nails require an adequate supply of vitamins and minerals. They are greatly influenced by vitamins E, C and A. These antioxidants neutralize free radicals, thereby slowing down the aging process of the skin. They are also involved in the restoration of elastin and collagen, providing firmness and elasticity to the skin.
- Vitamin A protects the skin from drying out, eliminates keratinization of the epidermis, reduces wrinkles, and also protects the skin from damage or acne. Patients with vitamin A deficiency may complain of fatigue, dryness and brittleness of hair and nails.
- Vitamin E. This antioxidant aids in beautiful skin, youthful appearance and healing of wounds, gives the skin a radiant appearance, and also adds energy and vitality.
- Vitamin C strengthens the walls of blood vessels and is also important for the proper functioning of the immune system.
- Extremely important vitamins for complexion: vitamin D and B vitamins, especially folic acid and biotin. Riboflavin improves the condition of the skin, hair and nails, and also has a very positive effect on vision.
Vegetable natural cosmetic oils are a real treasure trove of vitamins. Regular use of vitamin E oil restores the skin to a youthful, healthy and radiant appearance.
What else is worth knowing about vitamins?
It is not always possible to provide the body with the entire spectrum of vitamins in the right amount with food. This is influenced by many factors – the quality and quantity of food, absorption of nutrients by the intestines, heat treatment, exposure to environmental factors in the form of various kinds of toxins, and many others.
Sometimes it is necessary to use a nutritional supplement containing vitamins. Chemical vitamins are absorbed much worse than food vitamins. It also matters when individual vitamins are taken and with what foods. The form of vitamins taken is also very important. It is a mistake to take a large amount of multivitamins, which can lead to an overdose.