Vitamins and minerals are essential substances that our bodies need to develop and function normally.
If you eat a variety of foods from the 5 food groups and have a balanced diet, you’ll get all the vitamins and minerals you need. Most people don’t need supplements and also high doses of supplements can cause problems.
The known vitamins include A, C, D, E, and K, and the B vitamins: thiamin (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), pantothenic acid (B5), pyridoxal (B6), cobalamin (B12), biotin, and folate/folic acid.
A number of minerals are essential for health: calcium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, chloride, magnesium, iron, zinc, iodine, sulfur, cobalt, copper, fluoride, manganese, and selenium.
The role of vitamins and minerals
The body has thousands of chemical reactions going on in each cell, every second of the day. The cells continually process the proteins, fats and carbohydrates from food.
Vitamins and minerals are essential parts of those chemical reactions. Without them, essential body functions couldn't take place, but you only need very small amounts of them. Most people can get all the vitamins and minerals they need from a healthy diet.
A healthy balanced diet containing a variety of foods should provide all the vitamins your body needs to work properly.
There are 2 types of vitamins, fat-soluble and water-soluble.
Fat-soluble vitamins are mainly found in foods that are high in natural fat - such as dairy, eggs and oily fish.
You don't need to eat these types of food every day to get enough of these vitamins. Every time you eat these foods your body stores them in your liver and body fat for future use.
Fat-soluble vitamins include:
Unlike fat-soluble vitamins, you need to consume water-soluble vitamins more often. Your body can't store these for future use and gets rid of any excess when you pass urine.
Water-soluble vitamins include:
Your body needs certain minerals to build strong bones and teeth and turn the food you eat into energy.
The body needs many minerals; these are called essential minerals. Essential minerals are sometimes divided up into major minerals (macrominerals) and trace minerals (microminerals). These two groups of minerals are equally important, but trace minerals are needed in smaller amounts than major minerals. The amounts needed in the body are not an indication of their importance.
Macro Minerals include
Trace minerals (microminerals)
The body needs trace minerals in very small amounts. Note that iron is considered to be a trace mineral, although the amount needed is somewhat more than for other microminerals.
WOW OK... it is actually really simple, I know the above information can seem OVERWHELMING right?
Even as I was putting it together and I have studied the above Vitamin and Minerals in all of my Nutrition and Naturopathic studies, I started to feel overwhelmed. I even thought... when is this BLOG going to end!!!!!
The simplicity is that if you eat a well balanced set of assorted foods in your diet you cover ALL of the above. Some people DO require supplementation.
This is where I can assist, if you can not get in a good balance diet and/or need supplementation consultation drop me a line as I would love to assist you.
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