Vitamins And Their Value To Your Health
Vitamins are essential to life. They regulate the metabolism and assist the bio-chemical processes that release energy from digested food. They are considered “micro-nutrients” because the body needs them in relatively small amounts compared with nutrients like carbohydrates, proteins, fats and water.
Recommended Daily Allowances (RDA) was determined over forty years ago as a standard for the daily amounts of vitamins needed by a “healthy person.”
In 1992, they required a change in food product labeling to use a new reference term, Daily Value (DV), which began to appear on FDA-regulated product labels in 1994. DV’s are made up of two sets of references: Daily Reference Values (DRV’s) and Reference Daily Intakes (RDI‘s).
DRV’s are a set of references that apply to fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, carbohydrate, protein, fiber, sodium and potassium. RDI’s are a set of references based on essential vitamins and minerals and, in selected groups, protein.helps our bodies work better. So, the RDI’s are not very useful in determining what our vitamin intake should be.
Sadly, the amount of nutrients defined by the RDA’s only give us the “bare minimum” required to ward off vitamin defficieny diseases like beriberi, rickets, scurvy and night blindness. Scientific studies have shown that taking dosages above the RDI’s helps our bodies work better.
Optimum Daily Intakes (ODI‘s) is the amount of nutirents needed for vibrant good health. This means that you need to consume larger amounts of vitamins than the RDI’s.
VITAMIN A (Beta Carotene) (5,000-10,000 IU)
IMPORTANCE: A powerful anti-oxidant which helps protect the cells against cancer by neutralizing “Free Radicals,” necessary for new cell growth; guards against heart disease and stroke; lowers cholesterol levels; slows the aging process; protects against colds, flu and infections of the kidneys, bladder, lungs and mucous membranes; promotes healthy wrinkle-free skin, and helps in the removal of age spots and acne; promotes healthy hair and nails; protects against air pollutants and counteracts night blindness and weak eye sight; builds resistance to infections; slows the progression of osteoarthritis and cataracts; helps prevent macular degeneration of the eyes. BETA CAROTENE IS A SAFE NON-TOXIC FORM OF VITAMIN A.
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) (50-100 mg)
IMPORTANCE: Beneficial effects on the nervous system and mental attitude. It enhances circulation, assists in blood formation, carbohydrate metabolism and digestion; plays a key role in generating energy; promotes good muscle tone; acts as an anti-oxidant, protecting the body from degenerative effects of aging; helps prevent reoccurring canker sores; helps maintain a healthy nervous system; prevents depression, alleviates fatigue, optimizes brain function and mental alertness; has been used to treat numbness of the hands and feet, poor circulation, tingling sensations, weak or sore muscles, forgetfulness, heavy breathing, and irritability.
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) (15-50 mg)
IMPORTANCE: Necessary for red blood cell formation, anti-body production, cell respiration, and growth; alleviates eye fatigue, and is important in the prevention of cataracts; aids in the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats and proteins; promotes the oxygenation of the skin, hair, and nails; eliminates dandruff; aids in the release of energy from food; reduces the occurrence of migraine headaches; helps eliminate cracked mouth, lips, and tongue; supports the production of adrenal hormones.
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-3 (Niacin, Niacinamide) (15-50 mg)
IMPORTANCE: Needed for proper circulation and healthy skin. Aids in the functioning of the nervous system; in the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins; and in the production of hydrochloric acid for the digestive system. Involved in the normal secretion of bile and stomach fluids, and in the synthesis of sex hormones.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: Pellagra is a disease caused by a lack of Niacin. Other symptoms of deficiency are canker sores, dementia, depression, diarrhea, dizziness, fatigue, halatosis, headaches, indigestion, insomnia, limb pains, loss of appetite, low blood sugar, muscular weakness, skin eruptions, and inflammation.
VITAMIN B-5 (Pantothenic Acid) (50-100 mg)
IMPORTANCE: Is considered the “Anti-Stress” Vitamin because of its important role in the functioning of the adrenal glands, which produce hormones that help our bodies respond to stress; plays an important role in making hemoglobin, which transports oxygen throughout our bodies; helpful in detoxifying harmful chemicals such as herbicides and insecticides; along with anti-oxidants, zinc, copper, and vitamin D, will prevent accelerated joint degeneration, by encouraging your body’s ability to regenerate cartilage; fights infections by building antibodies; prevents fatigue, and used by athletes to boost performance; used to reduce the adverse and toxic effects of many antibiotics; stimulates the release of energy from carbohydrates, fats and protein; promotes the production of red blood cells and sex hormones; helps with rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and menopausal discomforts; lowers high cholesterol and triglycerides.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May lead to painful & burning feet, skin abnormalities, retarded growth, dizzy spells, digestive disturbances, vomiting, restlessness, stomach stress, muscle cramps.
VITAMIN B-6 (Pyridoxine) (50-100 mg)
IMPORTANCE: Can significantly reduce the risk of heart disease by inhibiting the formation of homocysteine, a toxic chemical that attacks the heart muscle and allows the deposition of cholesterol around the heart muscle; aids in maintaining the central nervous system and normal brain function; reduces muscle spasms, leg cramps and stiffness of the hands; relieves nausea and migraines, lowers cholesterol; improves vision, and aids in the prevention of PMS; promotes red blood cell formation; aids the immune system and antibody production; aids in cancer immunity and in the prevention of atherosclerosis; is destroyed by alcoholic beverages.
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 (Cyanocobalamin) (200-400 mcg)
IMPORTANCE: Helps in the formation of red blood cells, thus helping prevent anemia; increases energy levels; promotes a healthy immune system, and nerve function; is required for the proper digestion of foods, the synthesis of protein, and the metabolism of carbohydrates and fats; aids in cell formation and cellular longevity; prevents nerve damage; improves concentration, memory, and balance; may protect against smoking-induced cancer.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: chronic fatigue, bone loss, constipation, depression, digestive disorders, dizziness, drowsiness, enlargement of the liver, eye disorders, hallucinations, headaches, labored breathing, memory loss, moodiness, nervousness, pernicious anemia, ringing in the ears, binge eating, and spinal cord degeneration.
BIOTIN (400-800 mcg)
IMPORTANCE: Aids in the utilization of protein and other nutrients; aids in cell growth and fatty acid production; promotes the health of sweat glands, nerve tissue, bone marrow, male sex glands, blood cells, skin and hair; cures some forms of baldness, and is used in preventative treatments for baldness; prevents the hair from turning prematurely gray; alleviates eczema and dermatitis; alleviates muscle pain; may help reduce blood sugar levels in people with either type 1 or type 2 diabete
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May lead to extreme exhaustion, drowsiness, muscle pain, loss of appetite, depression, grayish skin color.
CHOLINE (50-200 mg)
IMPORTANCE: A “super nutrient” for the liver and brain; needed for the proper transmission of nerve impulse from the brain through the central nervous system; is able to penetrate the blood-brain barrier and go directly into brain cells to produce acetylcholine, a chemical that aids memory; aids in the treatment of Alzheimer’s and other age-related memory loss; aids in hormone production; is important in controlling fat and cholesterol build-up in the body; emulsifies (breaks down) cholesterol so that it doesn’t settle on artery walls or in the gallbladder; used for the prevention and treatment of atherosclerosis and the metabolism of homocysteine; helps eliminate poisons and drugs from your system by aiding the liver; used to treat liver damage caused by alcoholism.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May result in cirrhosis and fatty degeneration of the liver, hardening of the arteries, heart problems, high blood pressure, hemorrhaging kidneys.
FOLATE (Folic Acid) (400-800 mcg)
IMPORTANCE: May reduce the risk of a heart attack by lowering homocysteine levels. In recent years, high levels of homocysteine have been found to be associated with an increased risk of atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries due to the accumulation of fatty plaques). Protects against birth defects by helping regulate embryonic and fetal nerve cell formation; protects against intestinal parasites and food poisoning; may delay graying hair when used in conjunction with pantothenic acid and PABA; promotes healthier looking skin, is considered a brain food; is needed for energy production, and the formation of red blood cells; strengthens the immune system by aiding the proper formation and functioning of white blood cells; important for healthy cell division and replication.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May result in gastrointestinal disorders, anemia, Vitamin B-12 deficiency, pre-mature gray hair.
INOSITOL (50-200 mg)
IMPORTANCE: Is vital for hair growth; promotes strong healthy hair, and aids in preventing fallout; high levels of this nutrient is found in the heart and brain; creates a calming effect and reduces blood cholesterol; prevents hardening of the arteries, and is important in the formation of lecithin and the metabolism of fat and cholesterol; removes fat from the liver; aids in redistribution of body fat; helps prevent eczema; has been used for depression, panic attacks and diabetes.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May result in high blood cholesterol, constipation, eczema, hair loss.
PABA (Para Amino Benzoic Acid) (10-50 mg)
IMPORTANCE: An anti-oxidant which helps in the formation of red blood cells; aids in the maintenance of healthy intestinal flora; acts as a coenzyme in the breakdown and utilization of protein; may restore gray hair to its original color if the graying was caused by stress or a nutritional deficiency; protects against second hand smoke, ozone, and other air pollutants; reduces inflammation caused by arthritis; improves flexibility; helps keep skin smooth; has been used to prevent and reverse accumulation of abnormal fibrous tissue, as occurs in various connective tissue diseases.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May cause extreme fatigue, eczema, irritability, depressions, nervousness, constipation, headaches, digestive disorders, hair turning prematurely gray.
VITAMIN C (Ascorbic Acid) (1,000-3,000 mg)
IMPORTANCE: A major and very potent anti-oxidant; plays a primary role in the formation of collagen, which is important for the growth and repair of body tissue cells, gums, blood vessels, bones and teeth; protects against the harmful effects of pollution; protects against infection, and enhances the immune system; helps protect against many forms of cancer by counteracting the formation of nitrosamines (cancer-causing substances); protects against abnormal blood clotting and bruising, and may reduce the risk of cataracts; aids in the treatment and prevention of the common cold; prevents scurvy; reduces the effects of many allergy producing substances; helps lower blood pressure; is vital for wound healing; strengthens the blood vessels; reduces cholesterol and protects against heart disease; aids in the production of “anti-stress” hormones; is needed for healthy adrenal function; helps expel heavy metals and other toxic substances from the body.
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 (400 IU D3)
IMPORTANCE: A deficiency plays a key role in the development of type 1 diabetes. Vitamin D is needed for islet cells to produce insulin, the hormone that allows cells to take up blood sugar. Without enough Vitamin D, islet cells don’t produce insulin. Helps regulate white blood cells that make up the immune system; Vitamin D with calcium has shown to reduce osteoporosis and hip fractures; improves the absorption and utilization of calcium and phosphorus; hardens and repairs bones; prevents rickets, treats hypocalcaemia, and promotes normal growth in children; supports the healthy function of the thyroid gland; may help prevent colon cancer.
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.
VITAMIN E (400-600 IU)
IMPORTANCE: Is a “super” anti-oxidant, which protects cells against damage caused by “free radicals”. Is extremely important in the prevention of cancer and cardiovascular disease, and is useful in treating premenstrual syndrome and fibrocystic disease of the breast. Thus far, studies have shown, that Vitamin E protects against approximately eighty diseases. It prevents thick scar formation when applied topically, and accelerates the healing of burns. It reduces blood pressure, aids in preventing cataracts, relieves leg cramps, and enhances sperm production; promotes healthy skin and hair and prevents age spots; retards cellular aging due to oxidation; prevents and dissolves blood clots; slows the progression of Alzheimer’s disease; significantly strengthens the immune system; supplies oxygen to the blood which is then carried to the heart and other organs thus alleviating fatigue; treats circulatory problems and prevents lung toxicity from air pollution; enhances sexual performance; improves muscle strength and stamina. Studies have shown that low levels of Vitamin E in the blood increases the risk of certain types of cancer, particularly cancers of the gastrointestinal tract, breast, prostate, lung, and colon. Studies have shown that Vitamin E improves insulin action and it exerts a number of beneficial effects that aids in preventing long-term complications of diabetes, especially cardiovascular disease. Studies have shown that those who took Vitamin E on a regular basis had a 41 % lower risk of heart disease. Other studies have shown that people with existing heart disease, who started taking 400-800 IU of Vitamin E daily, had a 70% reduction in the number of heart attacks as compared to a placebo group.
Note: There are three forms of “E” on the market: (1) 100% Synthetic (2) Blended (contains 95% Synthetic and 5% Natural) (3) 100% Natural. Synthetic E is much less effective (only 5 to 20% as much biological activity) as the 100% Natural form. Synthetic Vitamin E is usually made from petroleum, turpentine, sugar, and artificial preservatives. According to the New York Academy of Sciences, synthetic Vitamin E has been shown to block the absorption of natural Vitamin E from food. The FDA allows the blended form of Vitamin E to be labeled as “Natural E” even though it only contains 5% natural products. As a result, consumers are mislead into thinking it is a 100% Natural E, when it is not! It’s 95% synthetic. The 100% Natural form of Vitamin E is derived from soybeans and contains 5 times more biological activity than the synthetic form.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: May lead to a rupture of red blood cells, loss of reproductive powers, lack of sexual vitality, abnormal fat deposits in muscles, degenerative changes in the heart and other muscles; dry skin.
VITAMIN K (100-500 mcg)
IMPORTANCE: Necessary for proper blood clotting. Essential for bone formation and repair; it’s necessary for the synthesis of osteocalcin, the protein in bone tissue on which calcium crystallizes. It may help prevent osteoporosis. Important role in the intestines and aids in converting glucose into glycogen for storage in the liver, promoting healthy liver function. It may increase resistance to infection in children and help prevent cancers that target the inner linings of the organs.
DEFICIENCY SYMPTOMS: Abnormal and/or internal bleeding.
BIOFLAVONOIDS – HESPERIDIN – RUTIN (200-500 mg) Mixed
Although, not a “true” vitamin, in the strictest sense, they are sometimes refered to a Vitamin P. Is essential for the proper absorption and use of Vitamin C; promotes vascular health; protects and preserves the structure of capillaries, which will help prevent bruising, varicose veins and hemorroids; helps prevent blood clotting and platelet clumping by making the blood less sticky; lowers cholesterol levels; treats and prevents cataracts, glaucoma, and other vision problems; when taken with Vitamin C may reduce the symptoms of oral herpes.
QUERCETIN (70-140 mg)
A very potent bioflavonoid found in red wine, green tea, tomatoes, onions, and green beans. A natural anti-oxidant, which protects cells in the body from damage by “free radicals”. Heart disease and high cholesterol is partially caused by free radical damage to blood vessels. May protect against heart attacks and strokes; recommended as a treatment for allergies, hay fever, and asthma because it helps prevent immune cells from releasing histamine, the chemical that initiates the itching, sneezing, and swelling of an allergic reaction; helps prevent itchy eyes, runny noses, and scratchy throats; in animal studies has shown to protect against a variety of cancers; may help stop cancer at its earliest stage by preventing the damaging changes in the cells that initiate cancer.
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