Here in this post, we will look at the list of vitamins, its health benefit, sources and deficiency. Our body needs vitamins to function and maintain good health, and the body does not produce them, to get them we must eat the right food, fresh vegetables and fruits.
For normal metabolism vitamins are necessary, lacking enough vitamin can result in some health problem that will require serious medical attention. Vitamins are classified into two types. Fat soluble vitamins and water soluble vitamins.
Fat Soluble Vitamins
Fat-soluble vitamins are of types and each type has a different role to play in our body. Fat-soluble vitamins melt in the fat and are stored in the fat tissue in the body, they soak into our body when we eat food that is high in fat. Fat-soluble vitamins remain in the body for a very long time. Taking too much of fat-soluble vitamins can lead to toxicity and a lot of body reaction. Fat-soluble vitamins dissolve in oil i.e liquid fat. Fat-soluble vitamins include;
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin D
- Vitamin K
Retinol is another name for vitamin A.
Health benefits of vitamin A: Vitamin A help prevent infections, help us see well at night, boost the immune system, it helps the bone to and tooth grow well, support healthy skin.
Sources of vitamin A
We get vitamin A from the following sources:
Animal sources (retinol)
- Fortified margarine
- Fortified milk
Plant sources (beta-carotene)
- Sweet potatoes
- Dark green vegetable
- Dark orange fruits
Vitamin A Deficiency
Lack of vitamin A in our body causes a lot such as:
- Hair loss
- Destroy liver
- Dry eyes
- Skin problems
- It reduces immune function
- Death in pregnant women
Signs and symptoms of vitamin A deficiency
Dry skin: Vitamin A helps battle eczema, caused by itchy skin, dry skin and inflamed skin. Consume enough vitamin A to avoid dry skin
Dry eyes: Vitamin A deficiency leads to eye problems. Getting a little amount of vitamin A may lead to total blindness.
Night Blindness: Night blindness occurs as a result of acute vitamin A deficiency. Enough intake of vitamin A can save you from the stress of night blindness.
Growth Delayed: Children needs vitamin A for proper growth. Parents are advised to provide enough vitamin A for their children to avoid stunted growth that is caused by vitamin A deficiency.
Another name for vitamin D is Calciferol. For our body to function well we need a certain amount of nutrients minerals, and vitamins, we have to eat in order to live healthily, we can consume these either through supplements or in food. This vitamin is necessary for human health. Steroid vitamin is another name for vitamin D because it melts calcium and phosphorus and also enhances metabolism.
Health Benefits of vitamin D
Healthy Bones: Vitamin D control calcium and maintain the level of phosphorus in the blood, and also maintain bones health.
Reduces depression: Study shows that vitamin D helps in maintaining mood and manage depression. Another research showed that people with depression were given vitamin D supplements and the improvement takes place in the symptoms.
Vitamin D deficiency
- Bone, muscle pain and weakness
- Stress fracture
- Aches, tiredness and pains.
Sign and symptoms of vitamin D deficiency
Getting sick frequently: Low vitamin D may contribute to the following sickness
Research has shown that respiratory tract infection risk may decrease if taking a 4,000 IU dosage of vitamin D supplements on a daily basis.
Tiredness and Fatigue: Low vitamin D may contribute to the feeling of tiredness often. Studies have shown that low blood level may contribute to fatigue that may lead to a low quality of life. Woman who takes vitamin D supplement, raise the level to 39 ng/ml and her symptoms also settle.
Back and Bone Pain: Low vitamin D can lead to back and bone pain. Vitamin helps calcium to absorb in our body.
Researchers discovered that people with vitamin D deficiency suffered severe back pain that prevents them from carrying out their daily activities.
Slow wound healing: Vitamin D deficiency can slow down the wound healing process. Studies have shown that those with high inflammatory markers were suffering from low vitamin D which can endanger wound healing.
Sources of vitamin D
Sunlight is the most familiar good source of vitamin D. Other sources are
- Fatty fish
- Fish oil
A long period of vitamin D deficiency can result in;
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- Neurodegenerative diseases (Alzheimer’s disease)
Vitamin E is a good source of antioxidant, it can help in destroying free radicals. Free radicals refer to unsteady atoms that form the cancer cell, Vitamin E may prevent cancer.
Health Benefits of Vitamin E
Vitamin E protect cells walls.
Prevent formation of cataract: Vitamin E is a great antioxidant which protects eyes from free radicals that can possibly damage cells membranes. Free radicals in our are as a result of environmental pollutants such as
- Cigarette smoke
- Radiation spills
- Harmful off gassing like oil, coal, gas
- The burning of fossil fuel like paint
Skin Repairs: Vitamin E maintains healthy skin by reducing body inflammation. The vitamin E helps the skin healing process, it can be used for cancer treatment and also treat scars and wrinkles. It makes our skin remain younger and healthier.
Hair Thickens: Antioxidant content in vitamin E helps reduce hair damage. Vitamin E oil maintains skin moisture that helps our scalp from being dry.
Boost Immune System: Including vitamin E in our daily diet boosts our immune system. Our body needs cells growth to destroy cancerous cells and germs.
Sources of Vitamin E
Nuts and seeds
Mango and Papaya
Dark green vegetables
Oils (wheat germ oil, rice bran oil, grape seed oil)
Symptoms of Vitamin E Deficiency
Vision degeneration: Low vitamin E in our body can destabilize light receptors in the retina which may lead to losing vision. The weakness of the muscle: Vitamin E is one of the important antioxidants that help the nervous system, vitamin E deficiency lead to Oxidative stress which may result in muscle weakness.
Vitamin K is one of the fat-soluble vitamins, this vitamin plays a major role in control blood calcium levels, Coagulation and bone metabolism. Vitamin K helps the body to produce a protein called prothrombin which regulates bone metabolism and boost blood clotting. We can get vitamin K from vegetables such as cabbage and vegetables.
Vitamin K can be classified into two Which Are;
Vitamin k-1: phylloquinone. The major source of vitamin k is dark leafy green vegetables.
Vitamin K-2: Menaquinone. Meats and fermented foods are good sources of vitamin k.
Sources of vitamin K-1
Vitamin k-1 can be sourced through the following:
- Vegetable oils
- Dark leafy green vegetables ( kale, spinach and collards).
Vitamin K-2 can be sourced through the following
- Egg yolk
- Fatty fish e.g salmon
- Natto, fermented soybeans
- Dairy product ( whole milk, skim milk, cheese, sour cream, cottage cheese, yoghurt) etc.
Health benefits of Vitamin K-2
Healthy bone: The content of protein called carboxylating osteocalcin in vitamin k-2 fasten calcium to bone. Research shows that consumption of MK-4 supplement every day may help decrease the quantity of undercarboxylated osteocalcin to the healthy, premenopausal women.
Benefits of vitamin K
Bone Health: According to research vitamin k help in maintaining strong bones, reduce fracture risk and boost bone density. And also good for healing of wounds. Vitamin k build proteins for strong bones and blood clotting. According to Dr Sherry Ross, women health expert, Vitamin k with the help of vitamin D helps calcium locate the way to the bones to assist them in proper development.
Healthy Immunity: Vitamin k protect the body and preserve the cardiovascular and digestive system. It also boosts sufficient digestion and removes the diverse possibility of chronic illness.
Dental Health: Mineralization is important in the prevention of tooth decay. Vitamin is necessary for healthy teeth and gum. Acids being the cause of tooth decay, vitamin K removes the effects.
Vitamin K Deficiency
Vitamin k deficiency takes place as a result of inadequate consumption of vitamin k. When an organism does not get recommended vitamins. Another factor or deficiency is smoking, too much consumption of alcohol etc. leads to vitamin k deficiency.
Sign and symptoms of vitamin K deficiency
- Easily bruising
- small blood clots appearing under the nails
- dark stool and also contain blood
- bleeds in the mucous membrane
Phytonadione is vitamin k supplement is good for the treatment of people who suffer vitamin k deficiency. To be taken according to doctor’s prescription.
Fat-soluble vitamins play an important role in our health. All types of vitamins are essential and our body needs them to boost the immune system and for clear vision. Avoid taking too much of vitamins because it can lead to a bad condition that needs urgent medical attention and unnecessary spending. Hypercalcemia occurs as a result of taking vitamin D in excess.
Water-soluble vitamins dissolve in water and they are not stored in the body that is why you need them on dailies
Water-soluble vitamins include;
Vitamin B1 ( thiamin)
Vitamin B2 (riboflavin)
Vitamin B3 (niacin)
Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid)
Vitamin B7 (biotin)
Vitamin 12 (cobalamin)
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps in nurturing the immune system by eliminating infection and fight cold. This wonderful antioxidant helps boost cardiovascular and eye health, prevent sign of ageing and wrinkles.
Vitamin C is in two categories:
- Ascorbic acid, this is the simplest
- Dehydroascorbic acid, this is an oxidized form of ascorbic acid
Health Benefits of Vitamin C
Body Repair: Vitamin c is essential for tissues repair and growth, our body uses vitamin c in skin making. Vitamin c helps in forming an important protein used in skin making, wound healing, repair and support cartilage, teeth and bones and also help in iron absorption. Our body cannot produce vitamin C and it does not store it to get it you must eat foods and fruits that are rich in vitamin C.
Prevent Cancer: The body cell can be damaged because of free radicals such as air pollution, and cigarette smoke, we are exposed to these free radicals in our environment but consumption of food that contains vitamin C can help our cell from being damaged by these free radicals, according to Dr Sherry Ross. Vitamin C plays a vital role in cancer prevention by obstructing the damage made by free radicals.
Sources of Vitamin C
- Sweet yellow peppers
- Mustard spinach
- Brussels sprouts
Vitamin C Deficiency
Rough Skin: Keratosis pilaris is a skin condition and it can develop when the level of vitamin C in the body is low. Keratosis pilaris show after three to five month of insufficient consumption of vitamin c with supplement.
Bruising: Low level of vitamin C in the body causes a bruise. The first sign of vitamin c deficiency is an easy bruise, a bruise is a mark or injury below the skin that causes bleeding,
Joints Pains: Vitamin C deficiency cause joint bleeding causing severe pains and swelling. With vitamin c supplements these symptoms can go
Weak Bones: According to research this protein antioxidant called vitamin c is good in bone formation and low level of vitamin c contribute to a high rate of bone loss. Parents are advised to give their children enough vitamin c to avoid their skeleton being affected during the developing and growing period.
Gum Bleeding and tooth loss: These signs are common. Lack of enough vitamin C can be weakened the gum tissue thereby inflamed and encourage blood vessel to bleed more. This can prompt the teeth to fall out because of the weak and unhealthy gum. Gums appear rotten and purple as the deficiency progresses.
Note: Once the deficiency signs are resolved the vitamin c levels are restored. Consuming enough vitamin C daily can prevent deficiency through fresh vegetables and fruits.
Vitamin C is very necessary, taking or including them in your diet can help a lot to avoid pains in the limbs, legs, anaemia exhaustion, unprompted bleeding. Insufficient vitamin C in the body also causes slow healing of wounds.
Vitamin B1 (thiamine)
Vitamin B1 also known as thiamin or thiamine, is an essential nutrient in the body and is one of the water-soluble vitamins which turn carbohydrate into glucose, vitamin B1 discharge the duty of breaking down of proteins and fats.
Benefits of vitamin B1
Prevent vision problem: Studies have shown that vitamin B1 plays a vital role in reduces the risk of generating vision problems like cataracts and glaucoma. Cataracts blacken the natural eyes lens which can lead to blindness, vitamin B1 decrease the oxidative stress in the eyes.
Vitamin B1 is a member of water-soluble vitamin and it discharged through urine, therefore it very necessary to consume enough in order to maintain the daily amount of vitamin B1 our body needs, Vitamin B1 boost appetite. Thiamine plays a significant role in controlling satiety, according to scientists. The Thiamine maintains the satiety centre which is located in the ventromedial hypothalamus of the brain.
Encourage Digestion: Hydrochloric acid is release with the help of vitamin B1. Hydrochloric acid is the basis for complete food digestion.
Sources of Vitamin B1
- Blue mussels
- Black Beans
- Sunflower Seeds
- Brown Rice
- White Rice
- Fortified cereals
- Egg Noodles
- English Muffins
Sign and symptoms of vitamin B1 Deficiency
Decrease Reflexes: Untreated thiamine deficiency can lead to nervous system damage which can cause reflexes changes.
Loss of Appetite: The common sign of the low level of vitamin B1 is anorexia and loss of appetite. Low level of thiamine can lead to the alteration of satiety centre, making us feel fool easily it can lead to appetite deficiency.
Beriberi: Lack of vitamin B1 in the body can cause uncontrolled eye movement, bruising, problem with breathing. To avoid beriberi consume and include thiamine in your diet.
Depression: Deficiency of vitamin B1 may cause depression, study shows that a low level of thiamine can increase the risk of depression.
Side Effect of Vitamin B1
- Throat tightness
- Skin discolouration
- The skin swelling, Etc.
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)
Vitamin B2 which also called riboflavin is a water-soluble vitamin. Since it does not store in the body for a longer period, it needs to be replaced on a daily basis. Riboflavin essential for growth and good health. You get it in grains, plant even in the dairy product. Breaking down of food components and sustaining tissue are among the roles of riboflavin.
Riboflavin plays an important role in the body, it helps in energy production. It converts carbohydrate to sugar. Riboflavin is an antioxidant that helps in reducing ageing speed.
Health Benefits of Vitamin B2
Prevent Free Radicals: Riboflavin prevents and fights damages caused by free radicals. Free radicals may weaken or damage DNA and cells which may help In the ageing process and also lead to the development of cancers and heart disease. Vitamin B2 is loaded with power that can fight these free radicals. Riboflavin helps to convert vitamin B6 and folate into advantageous form.
Eye Health Support: According to studies the low level of vitamin B2 may lead to high risk of developing eye problem like cataracts and glaucoma that may lead to blindness and loss of eyesight. Another study has shown that those that consumption of a high amount of riboflavin experience less risk of eye disorders.
Proper maintaining of energy levels: The body used vitamin B2 to break down carbohydrate and turn it to energy to boost hormone function, digestive, brain and nerve. Riboflavin plays an important role in body repair and growth.
Maintain Healthy Skin: Riboflavin maintains the level of collagen which helps keep healthy hair and skin, it also prevents wrinkles and fine lines. Low level of vitamin B2 promotes quick ageing. For proper and quick wound healing consume enough riboflavin.
Sources of Vitamin B2
- Dairy product
Vegetable and Fruits
• Green leafy
• Whole Grain
Riboflavin deficiency is of two types: Vitamin B2 deficiency occurs when our daily diet is low in riboflavin.
Riboflavin deficiency may occur as a result of the body inability to use it.
Symptoms of riboflavin deficiency are:
Fluid present in mucous membranes
Vitamin B3 (niacin)
Vitamin B3 which is also called as niacin one of water-soluble vitamins the body doesn’t store it. It needs to be replaced. Niacin performs so many functions in our body such as nervous system, digestive system and skin. Vitamin B3 help in turning carbohydrates into glucose.
Health Benefits of Niacin
Promotes Brain Function: The two coenzymes NAD and NADP help the brain to function well, it reinstates DNA and constructs signal, niacin helps these enzymes discharge their functions properly.
Boost skin function: Vitamin B3 is a powerful antioxidant that helps preserve the skin from being damaged by the sun, it can also prevent the skin against skin cancer. Studies show that nicotinamide if taken 500mg twice daily reduced the high risk of developing any type of skin cancer.
Prevent Heart Disease: Niacin plays a vital role in the body, it reduces the inflammation and oxidative stress, these can lead to atherosclerosis.
Sources of Vitamin B3 (niacin)
• Heat flakes
• Tuna fish
• Brown rice
• Brewer’s yeast
• Dried beans
Sign and symptoms of Niacin deficiency
• Memory loss
• Skin problems
Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)
Vitamin B5 which is also called pantothenic acid is a water-soluble vitamin. Pantothenic acid is among the family of B-complex, they are in charge of conversion of food into energy for proper body function. Including vitamin B5 in your daily diet will help you stay sound and healthy. Pantothenic is found in plants and animals. Vitamin B complex formulations can be achieved by combining other water-soluble vitamins with vitamin B5. Pantothenic acid may also help lower the level of body cholesterol.
Health Benefits of Vitamin B5
Relieve Depression: People who suffer depression may be as a result of a low level of vitamin b5, they should increase pantothenic acid intake, remember to consult your doctor. Pantothenic acid assists in controlling the hormones connected with mood. Vitamin b5 also play a vital role by keeping the mind mollify.
Hair and Skin Care: Pantothenic acid help in maintaining smooth and soft skin. Vitamin B5 helps in wound healing, the antioxidant moisturize and keep the skin healthy.
Studies show that vitamin B5 help maintains hair pigmentation. Taking enough vitamin B5 may help reduce the fine lines and wrinkles.
Boost Immune System: Vitamin B5 helps keep the immune system strong in order to fight diseases. According to research pantothenic acid help increase the white blood cells. Vitamin B5 helps the immune system protect the body in any form of damage. Pantothenic acid helps keep higher immunity thereby reduces the high risk of falling often.
Signs and symptoms of vitamin B5
Upper respiratory infections
• Stomach pains
• Muscle cramps
• Burning feet
Sources of Vitamin B5
There are many foods that are naturally loaded with vitamin B5 that can help people with deviancy to resolve deficiency sign and restore normal vitamin level.
• Sunflower seeds
Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)
Vitamin B6 is also known as Pyridoxine. It belongs to B-complex family and it performs many functions which include supporting of the immune system, brain and maintaining a healthy body. Vitamin B6 is water soluble vitamin, the body cannot produce pyridoxine we can get it from supplements or foods
Sufficient amount of Pyridoxine is necessary for the good of your health and for prevention of chronic disease.
Health Benefits of Vitamin B6
Treats Nausea during pregnancy : According to research pyridoxine prevent nausea in pregnant women. Pregnant women are always advised by Doctors to include an adequate amount of Vitamin B6 in their daily diet to reduce morning sickness severity. Blood glucose level is maintained by vitamin B6.
Maintain Healthy Skin: Vitamin B6 help prevent premature ageing sign such as wrinkles and fine lines. Our body needs pyridoxine for proper production of cells and blood cells development. It may also help keep the skin free from acne and it reduces the inflammation that may exist with acne to free and calm the skin.
Treat Eye Problem: Loss of vision may occur as a result of a low level of vitamin B6 in the body, adequate intake of it may treat glaucoma and cataracts. It also helps in maintain a clear cornea.
Sources of Vitamin B6
• Soya beans
• Wheat germ
• Brown rice
Vitamin B6 Deficiency
• Skin Rashes
• Cracked and sore lips
• Sore tongue
• Mood changes
• Weakness of Immune function
• Pains in feet
• High Homocysteine
Vitamin B7 (Biotin)
Vitamin B7 is a water-soluble vitamin also known as biotin. It strengthens the hair that is why it is called vitamin H, our body needs vitaminB7 to function well. Biotin has many health benefits which include protein, fat and carbohydrate to energy, Low level of it may lead to many health problems such as depression, DNA repair and Immune function.
Health Benefits of Vitamin B7
Skin Care: Biotin is an important micronutrient which helps in keeping healthy skin and help our nails to remain in good condition. Biotin plays a vital role in producing new cells and assists oil glands to function well and it also helps in skin nourishment. Low level of Biotin can lead to several health problems such as acne, dermatitis, rashes, and psoriasis. Include vitamin B7 in your daily diet to avoid health problems.
Protect Heart: Vitamin B7 assists in decreasing the level of cholesterol in the body. Research has shown that vitamin B7 may decrease LDL (bad cholesterol) that may cause stroke, heart attacks and stroke. It helps the heart to function well.
Controls Blood Sugar: Those with diabetes should consume Biotin because it helps in maintaining the normal sugar level in the blood. Study shows that chromium with a combination of biotin may boost glycaemic control overweight people with type 2 diabetes. Another study shows that biotin can reduce blood glucose in those with type 2 diabetes.
The following are the sign and symptoms of vitamin B7 deficiency
Hair loss or alopecia
Impaired Immune function
Red rash around the nose, mouth, genitals and eyes
Numbness and tingling in the feet and hand
Ataxia (loss of body control movement)
Sources of Biotin
- Egg yolk
- Sweet potatoes
- Nuts and seeds
- Liver and other meat
Vitamin B9 (Folic acid)
Vitamin B9 also known as folate or folic acid, it’s a water-soluble vitamin and the body cannot store it for a longer period which means it must be replaced every day, is essential for making white blood cells and red blood cells in the bone marrow, it helps converting carbohydrate and protein into energy and also help in DNA and RNA production. Doctors recommend folic acid for pregnant women.
Benefits of Vitamin B9
Prevent Birth Defects: Folic acid is essential for pregnant women, it helps prevent the unborn child from spinal cord defects and ensure good nervous system development. Low level of folic acid in expectant mothers may lead to neural tube defects such as spina bifida and anencephaly. It is good for women who desire to conceive to take folic acid and pregnant women are also advised to consume food with a high content of vitamin B9. Another study shows that women who consumed daily recommended folic acid had a lower risk for developing high blood pressure.
Fight Cancer: Another significant benefit of folic acid is that enough intake of folic acid may prevent breast cancer. Studies have shown that folic acid can protect the effects of colorectal cancer. If you want to decrease the high risk of developing many types of cancer consume vitamin B9.
Sources of Vitamin B9
- Brussels sprouts
- Green leafy
- Citrus fruits
- Blue crab
- Blue shank
- Beef Liver
- Non- fat yoghurt
- Brussels sprout
- White rice
- White bread
Vitamin B9 Deficiency
- Shortness breath
- Lack of concentration
- Heart palpitations
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)
Vitamin B12 also known as cobalamin, is an important nutrient our body requires to function properly. Our body does not produce vitamin B12 it is found In animal product, foods and from supplements. Since the body does not store it must be consumed every day to stay strong and healthy. Vitamin B12 has a lot of functions in the body. It helps keep the nerve and red blood cells strong and also help make DNA.
Health Benefits of vitamin B12
Prevent Birth Defects: Vitamin B12 is essential for expectant mothers for a healthy pregnancy. For the proper development of the baby and the brain and the nervous system needs vitamin B12 from the mother, according to studies. Low level of vitamin B12 may lead to miscarriage or premature birth. Pregnant women should consume adequate vitamin B12 for the sake of their unborn children.
Promote Healthy Skin: Vitamin B12 plays an important role in the skin, it supports healthy skin, it helps decrease inflammation, acne, blemishes, dryness redness and help the skin remain smooth.
Vitamin B12 promotes strong nails and prevents hair breakage, it also promotes cell production
Therefore, a low level of vitamin B12 may lead to pale skin, nail discolouration, hair changes, vitiligo, and cracked mouth.
However to avoid deficiency consume an adequate amount of vitamin B12 regularly.
Signs and Symptoms of Vitamin B12 Deficiency
- Feeling tired
- Poor memory
- Joint pain
- Feeling dizzy
- Lack of appetite
- Nausea, diarrhoea, and cramping
- Bleeding gums and mouth sores
- Shortness of breath
- Lack of concentration
- Pale or yellow skin
Sources of Vitamin B12
- Beef Liver
- Fortified cereal
- Fortified nondairy milk
- Milk and dairy products
I believe the above information on vitamins will help you a lot, consuming this food can boost your overall health. Vitamins are vital nutrients our body needs to function properly. Consume them to stay free from sickness and disease, include them in your daily diet to prevent deficiency.