What are the most important vitamins

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The smartest thing you can do for your body is to take a daily multi-vitamin
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Everyone should know what are the most important vitamins to safeguard health

Many people wonder what are the most important vitamins. If you take a multi-vitamin, particularly one that is suited for your age Ė over fifty, under fifty ó and gender you should have it covered.

Itís so easy to take a vitamin. A multi-vitamin safeguards you when you are not eating right or when you are sick, giving you a fighting chance at good health and a full recovery. And it certainly helps as you get older.

The body needs crucial vitamins so that it can perform vital functions. When an individual isnít getting a proper amount of any of these vitamins through diet, he may suffer from a deficiency, and this can show up in the hair, skin, vision, mental functioning and the way the person feels generally speaking.

The Mayo Clinic explains that supplements are not supposed to be a replacement for foods because a supplement cannot  duplicate what is in food, including the nutrients and the benefits that are derived from eating vegetables and fruits; however, for those who are not meeting their nutritional needs through food consumption, supplements are a good idea.

Those who do need vitamin supplements or fortified foods are those over the age of 50, who need vitamin B-12, and pregnant women, who need 400 micrograms of folic acid each day, as well as eating foods that contain folate. Pregnant women should also take prenatal vitamins that contain iron. A woman who has heavy menstrual periods benefits from an iron supplement and those who donít eat 1,600 calories a day should take vitamins.  Additionally, those who have medical issues that prevent the body from using or absorbing nutrients correctly should take vitamins.

Vitamin A is important because a person who is deficient in this vitamin may experience infections, impaired vision, night blindness and skin and eye problems, including keratinization, which means deposits of keratin in skin cells (including the nails and hair), which produces a horny material that is called cornification.

Known as retinol, vitamin A is often sound in skin care protects because it promotes skin health as well as bone and tooth health. You can get vitamin A into your system by eating butter, milk, liver and fortified milk, but if you donít eat enough of these products, you may require a supplement. Vitamin A is also a pro-vitamin or beta carotene, which is present in sweet potatoes, carrots, squash and green vegetables. 

The B vitamins are very vitally important. Vitamin B1 (thiamin) comes from whole grains, liver, peas and pork consumption. It allows your nervous system to perform optimally as well as aids your metabolism. If a person does not have enough B1 in his system, he may find that his muscles are weak and atrophying, and he may suffer from mental bewilderment.

Riboflavin, or Vitamin B-2 is essential because without it, you can become extremely sensitive to light, suffer from dermatitis, which is inflammation of the skin, and cracks can develop at the corners of the mouth. B-2 is required for good skin and vision and properly functioning metabolism. When you eat eggs, green vegetables, liver, whole-grain products and milk, you are consuming B-2.

Vitamin B-6 comes from cereals, meats (pork), whole grains and leafy vegetables. It is needed because it prevents kidney stones, anemia (iron poor blood), skin problems, irritability and dermatitis (skin issues.) B-6 is involved in the formation of red blood cells and helps the human body metabolize protein. It also has a role in fat usage. This is a water-soluble vitamin. When you boil vegetables, you are going to lose the vitamin B-6 that is in them.

Vitamin B-12 prevents neurological (brain) disorders and anemia. It is needed so that the nervous system functions optimally, and it also plays a crucial part in the development of red blood cells. You can get B-12 by eating oyster, eggs, fish, meats, shellfish and milk. If you are a vegan or vegetarian, you should be taking a B-12 supplement. 

Vitamin C is in citrus fruits as well as in tomatoes, bell pepper, strawberries and broccoli. This is a water-soluble vitamin as are the B vitamins. Vitamin C is also called ascorbic acid. Without vitamin C a person is at risk for scurvy, which causes loosening of the teeth, spongy gums, and bleeding into the mucous membranes and skin.  A vitamin C deficiency can also cause sore bones and joints and risk of infections. 

Vitamin D is necessary for absorption of calcium as well as building and maintaining healthy bones. If a deficiency occurs, rickets can occur in children. Rickets leads to soft bones that change structurally and are apt to bend. Vitamin D is fat-soluble vitamin that is generated when an individual is in the sun. Housebound people need to take a vitamin D supplement. Eating egg yolk, margarine, fish that is oily, fortified dairy products and vegetable oils is a source of vitamin D.

Adults can suffer from osteomalacia if they have a vitamin D deficiency. Osteomalacia generally strikes women who are deficient in vitamin D or calcium, causing bones pain and weakness.

Another fat-soluble is vitamin K. Vitamin K deficiencies can occur in those who are taking anticoagulants (blood thinners) or antibiotics. Vitamin K is critical because it  allows blood to clot correctly. A deficiency can cause to extreme bleeding. Vitamin K is found in soybeans, olive oil, canola, vegetables and liver. 

Women who are thinking about getting pregnant or are already pregnant must take folic acid, because it prevents birth defects that involve the infantís spine. Folic acid also lessens the risk of coronary heart disease and prompts the formation of red blood cells and helps the body metabolize protein. Folic acid is found in meats, whole grains, fish, cereals, kidney beans, liver and green leafy vegetables. 

Niacin is a B vitamin. It prevents diarrhea, muscle weakness, skin problems and mental confusion. It is found in poultry, peanuts, whole-grain products, fish, liver and meat. Niacin is good for the skin and nerve as well promotes a health appetite and energy production.

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