Why Take Vitamins

What are vitamins? Vitamins are organic substances found in food that keep cells functioning properly. They keep the body strong, help it to grow properly, and can provide immunities to keep us free from disease and healthy. Vitamins are molecules that the body needs to create chemical reactions in cells to keep the body healthy. The body cannot produce vitamins on its own. Therefore, vitamins are gained through the food we eat. We should be able to eat the right foods to give us the vitamins we need. Unfortunately, with today’s busy lifestyle, we don’t always take the time to eat healthy foods. If the body does not receive the proper amount of vitamins, diseases can occur. So many people take a daily multivitamin to insure that their body is receiving the right amount of vitamins and minerals.

People take vitamins for a variety of reasons. Basically they want to be healthy and they want to make sure they have all the nutrients that their body requires. The Federal Drug Administration publishes the Daily Required Allowances of the various vitamins and minerals that the body requires. Labels on food items contain the percentage of the minimum daily requirements that they fulfil. People can look at the labels and figure out if they are or aren't obtaining the proper levels of the requirements.

People who eat three well balances means per day, with foods from each of the food groups, should be receiving the proper amount of vitamins. Then again, how many people eat like that? Today, with everyone on the move and in a hurry breakfast might be a doughnut and coffee from the coffee shop, lunch is grabbing a Value Meal at McDonalds, and dinner is whatever they can find in the fridge. These people know they are not eating properly so they take vitamins to supplement their diet.

Another reason people take vitamins is because of dieting. Dieting is a way to lose weight by eating less food and exercising more often. However, eating less food can also mean that a person is not eating the right types of food or amounts of food to provide proper vitamins and minerals for proper health and cell function in the body. Taking a vitamin supplement is one way for the dieter to insure that they are getting the right amounts of vitamins and minerals to stay healthy while they are losing weight.

There is nothing wrong with taking vitamins – just don’t overdo it! Vitamins are chemicals. Just as your body might not have enough vitamins, it might also accumulate too many vitamins. There are two groups of vitamins - fat soluble and water soluble. Fat soluble vitamins, like vitamins A, E, K and D are stored in the fatty cells and liver. When the body needs them it uses them from storage. The body does not expel the excesses. They stay in the fatty cells and liver. The water soluble vitamins, like vitamin C, are expelled by the body when they are not required. There is no chance of a build up.

People supplement their diets with vitamins because they don't want to experience the problems that come with a vitamin deficiency. Below are descriptions of some essential vitamins, their sources in food, and a list of symptoms of vitamin deficiencies in each area.

Vitamin C helps prevent and fight colds and builds the immune system. A vitamin C deficiency can result in bruising or scurvy. Scurvy has symptoms such as loose teeth and bleeding gums, pain in the joins and wasting of muscles. Vitamin C is found in citrus fruits, and vegetables such as tomatoes and green peppers. But many folks don’t eat their fruits and vegetables, so a supplemental vitamin is needed.

A deficiency of vitamin A can lead to vision and eye problem. Vitamin A also helps people see better in the dark. This vitamin also makes skin healthier and fights infection. It also prevents cancer or slows the growth of cancer cells that already exist. Carrots and liver are two excellent sources of vitamin A.

Vitamin B deficiency can lead to a variety of problems since vitamin B is actually a complex of eight different vitamins. Deficiency of the B-complex vitamins can cause heart problems, nervous system problems, birth defects, anaemia, and depression. B vitamins can be found in grains, dairy products, and meat.

These are only a few of the vitamins your body needs, and what can happen to your body if you have a vitamin deficiency. Eating healthy foods can give your body all of the vitamins it needs to be fit and well. But if you are in doubt about the healthiness of your diet, a daily multivitamin might be just what you need for optimal health and wellness.