The Beautiful Benefits of Vitamins
When your vehicle needs oil, as a responsible owner you add fresh oil. If you take such good care of your transportation, how much more important is your body? You have probably heard about various vitamins most of your life, but you may not know what these vitamins do for your body. Here are some of the beautiful benefits vitamins bring to you.
Vitamins A and E
Vitamin A’s forerunner, beta-carotene, fight off free radicals that damage healthy cells, as does vitamin E. Both contribute to healthier skin, the largest organ in your body. Vitamin A also is important for cell manufacture, healthy vision, and reproductive functioning. You can get both from specific foods including dark leafy vegetables.
Vitamin A is present in egg yolks, dark vegetables, and fortified dairy foods. It is also present in liver, fish, and beef. Get Vitamin E from avocados, nuts and seeds, wheat germ, mangos and papayas, and oils and margarine of safflower, sunflower, and corn. Both of these vital vitamins are available in dark leafy vegetables such as spinach. Popeye was on to something.
Your body requires vitamin C for healthy immune system function. It helps your body heal wounds and absorb iron. It also serves as an antioxidant, fighting free radicals. Foods containing vitamin C include potatoes, strawberries, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, spinach, cabbage, tomatoes and tomato juice, and citrus fruits. You can also take supplements such as liquid vitamin C. This vitamin is especially helpful if you are fending off a cold.
The family of B vitamins comes together as a package. All of these vitamins serve important functions in your body. Generally, you can get your B-complex vitamins from food. However, some groups may need to take supplements. These people include women who are pregnant or breastfeeding, older people, those with specific conditions, and vegans and vegetarians, who may develop a deficiency of vitamin B-12, also called cobalamin.
You may know that sunlight helps your body metabolize vitamin D, but you can also eat your dose of this vitamin daily. Find it in fatty fish such as herring, orange roughy, mackerel, and salmon as well as cod’s liver oil. This vitamin is also in cereal and dairy products such as milk, butter, and cheese that have been fortified. Vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium for building strong teeth and bones.
This valuable vitamin helps your blood clot. Your body produces some vitamin K itself, but you can fortify it through your diet. Vitamin K is found in cauliflower, cabbage, dark leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach, and turnip greens, dark green vegetables including asparagus, Brussels sprouts, and broccoli, eggs, fish, beef and liver, and cereal.
While many fruits and vegetables contain some or several of the vitamins crucial to your body’s health, you might be surprised at other sources.
- Vitamin B-7, or biotin, is in chocolate and yeast.
- Vitamin B-9, or folate, is in peanut butter, lentils, and dried beans.
The best way to get all the vitamins your body needs to function at its best is to eat a varied diet with a variety of whole foods every day. Restrictive diets may lead to prolonged deficits that can eventually cause health problems. Keep in mind that you can have too much of a good thing. Excessive doses of some vitamins can actually make you ill.
To Your Health
Vitamins keep you going in so many ways. Eating a healthy and balanced diet will help your body function at its best, repair itself, and stay strong. A varied diet of healthy foods that includes dark vegetables, colorful fruits, nuts, lentils, and a variety of dried legumes is an easy and delicious way to ensure your body has plenty of these vital helpers. When you feel good, life gets better.