Topic Overview


The tables below list the vitamins, what they execute in the body (their functions), and their resources in food.

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Water-soluble vitamins

Water-soluble vitamins travel easily via the body, and also excess amounts commonly are excreted by the kidneys. The body needs water-soluble vitamins in frequent, little doses. These vitamins are not as most likely as fat-soluble vitamins to reach toxic levels. But niacin, vitamin B6, folate, choline, and vitamin C have upper consumption borders. Vitamin B6 at high levels over a lengthy period of time has actually been presented to cause irreversible nerve damage.

A well balanced diet normally offers enough of these vitamins. People older than 50 and also some vegetarians might have to use supplements to get enough B12.

Water-soluble vitamins




Thiamine (vitamin B1)

Part of an enzyme required for energy metabolism; vital to nerve function

Found in all nutritious foods in moderate amounts: pork, whole-grain or enriched breads and cereals, legumes, nuts and also seeds

Riboflavin (vitamin B2)

Part of an enzyme required for power metabolism; crucial for normal vision and skin health

Milk and milk products; leafy green vegetables; whole-grain, enriched breads and cereals

Niacin (vitamin B3)

Part of an enzyme needed for energy metabolism; important for nervous device, digestive device, and also skin health

Meat, poultry, fish, whole-grain or enriched breads and cereals, vegetables (specifically mushrooms, asparagus, and also leafy green vegetables), peanut butter

Pantothenic acid

Part of an enzyme necessary for energy metabolism

Widespcheck out in foods


Part of an enzyme required for power metabolism

Widespread in foods; also produced in intestinal tract by bacteria

Pyridoxine (vitamin B6)

Part of an enzyme needed for protein metabolism; helps make red blood cells

Meat, fish, poultry, vegetables, fruits

Folic acid

Part of an enzyme required for making DNA and also brand-new cells, particularly red blood cells

Leafy green vegetables and legumes, seeds, orange juice, and also liver; now added to a lot of refined grains

Cobalamin (vitamin B12)

Part of an enzyme needed for making new cells; important to nerve function

Meat, poulattempt, fish, seafood, eggs, milk and milk products; not uncovered in plant foods

Ascorbic acid (vitamin C)

Antioxidant ; part of an enzyme required for protein metabolism; important for immune device health; aids in iron absorption

Found just in fruits and vegetables, particularly citrus fruits, vegetables in the cabbage family members, cantaloupe, strawberries, peppers, tomatoes, potatoes, lettuce, papayas, mangoes, kiwifruit

Fat-soluble vitamins

Fat-soluble vitamins are stored in the body"s cells and also are not excreted as conveniently as water-soluble vitamins. They do not must be consumed as regularly as water-soluble vitamins, although sufficient amounts are essential. If you take also much of a fat-soluble vitamin, it can come to be toxic. Your body is especially sensitive to as well much vitamin A from pet sources (retinol) and also also much vitamin D. A balanced diet commonly gives enough fat-soluble vitamins.

Fat-soluble vitamins




Vitamin A (and its precursor*, beta-carotene)

*A precursor is converted by the body to the vitamin.

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Needed for vision, healthy and balanced skin and also mucous membranes, bone and also tooth growth, immune device health

Vitamin A from pet resources (retinol): fortified milk, cheese, cream, butter, fortified margarine, eggs, liver

Beta-carotene (from plant sources): Leafy, dark green vegetables; dark oselection fruits (apricots, cantaloupe) and also vegetables (carrots, winter squash, sweet potatoes, pumpkin)

Vitamin D

Needed for proper absorption of calcium; stored in bones

Egg yolks, liver, fatty fish, strengthened milk, fortified margarine. When exposed to sunlight, the skin can make vitamin D.

Vitamin E

Antioxidant; protects cell walls

Polyunsaturated plant oils (soybean, corn, cottonseed, safflower); leafy green vegetables; wheat germ; whole-grain products; liver; egg yolks; nuts and also seeds

Vitamin K

Needed for proper blood clotting

Leafy green vegetables such as kale, collard greens, and spinach; green vegetables such as broccoli, brussels sprouts, and asparagus; additionally created in intestinal tract by bacteria