Facts About Vitamins and Minerals

Here are the facts about vitamins and minerals. Many people may ask, 'Why do we need to take multi vitamins? Can't we get all the vitamins and minerals we need from our food?'

Unfortunately, if you live in a 'civilised' society it is almost impossible to obtain all the vitamins and minerals your body needs just from food. Therefore, taking supplemental forms of vitamins and minerals for health, energy, longenvity and weight loss is essential.

Vitamins and minerals are known as micronutrients (that is, they are required by the body in very small amounts). They are an essential part of human nutrition because they are involved in an untold number of metabolic processes within the body. Vitamins and minerals may be obtained from the food we eat, particularly fruits and vegetables, or through multi vitamins (that also contain minerals).

Facts About Vitamins and Minerals

What are the vitamin benefits?

With the exception of Vitamin D and Vitamin K, which are produced in the body under the right conditions, vitamins cannot be made by our bodies and therefore must be supplied in the diet.

They are not sources of energy even though they are organic compounds (contain carbon). The main function of vitamins is as co-enzymes (in collaboration with enzymes) and they are involved in a variety of metabolic reactions and biochemical processes within the body. Enzymes are organic catalysts that help speed up chemical reactions in the body without themselves being used up.

even though the facts about vitamins indicate that they are not part of the body's tissues,they still help in the metabolic processes of all cells. They are essential for growth, vitality and overall functioning of the body. Deficiencies may lead to a number of specific nutritional disorders and general health disorders.

Unfortunately, our food loses many vital nutrients, including vitamins, in the various stages on its way from its source of supply to our tables. The processes of harvesting, transporting, food processing, packaging, freezing, cooking, storing, etc. tend to reduce the amount of nutrients (especially vitamins) that may be present in our foods.

Plus, if we reduce our food intake in order to lose weight, our intake of vitamins (and minerals) from food is decreased even further.

Vitamins and mineral supplements can ensure adequate levels of these nutrients are supplied to our body on a daily basis.

The importance of minerals

Minerals are inorganic compounds (that is, they don't contain carbon). They make up approximately 4-5% of the human body. For example, the mineral calcium in the form of calcium carbonate and calcium phosphate is a component of our bones.

Minerals are involved in the following body functions:

  • Structural and functional support

  • Regulation of fluid balance in the body

  • Components of enzymes that catalyse biochemical reactions and aid in the production of energy

  • Transmission of nerve impulses

  • Muscle contraction

  • Cell permeability

  • Blood and tissue formation

  • Like vitamins, minerals don't have energy values or calories but they are required for energy production. Minerals are essential in our diet because our body can't manufacture them.

    Ensuring we get adequate amounts of minerals is probably more important than ensuring we get adequate amounts of vitamins because mineral deficiencies tend to be more common than vitamin deficiencies. One reason for this is that if the soils in which the crops and pastures are grown are deficient in minerals and trace elements, then the crops and pastures and the stock that feed on them will also lack vital nutrients.

    At present, if you live in a civilised society, it is very difficult to obtain all the nutrients your body requires on a daily basis without supplementation. Even if you eat a wide variety of foods with plenty of fruits and vegetables you still may not be getting all the nutrients, particularly the minerals, which your body requires in order to function at optimum levels and burn off body fat (and lose weight) efficiently.

    Overall, the facts about vitamins and minerals indicate that supplementation with these nutrients is essential if our goal is optimum health and longevity.

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