Vitamin and Mineral Summary

Water Soluble Vitamins Fat Soluble Vitamins Anti-Oxidant Vitamins
bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) All B Vitamins bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Vitamin A bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Vitamin A
       -B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B12 bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Vitamin E bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Vitamin C
bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Vitamin C bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Vitamin D bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Vitamin E
bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Folic Acid bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Vitamin K bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Beta-Carotene
bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Biotin

Important Minerals

bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Calcium bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Sodium
bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Phosphorus bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Potassium
bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Iron bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Magnesium
bl_arrow.gif (140 bytes) Zinc

Water Soluble Vitamins

Vitamin B1 - Thiamin
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) non-toxic
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Deficiency - causes a disease called Beri Beri which affects the function of the nervous system and the heart. Found in cultures that eat a lot of polished rice.


- adult 0.5 mg/1000 Kcal per day
- elderly 1.0 mg/1000 Kcal per day
- pregnancy/lactation 1.5 mg/1000 Kcal per day

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources - lean pork, wheat germ, liver, poultry, egg yolk, fish, dry beans, cereals (enriched), whole grain breads (enriched)

Vitamin B2 - Riboflavin
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) non-toxic
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Deficiency - causes angular stomatitis which means dry cracking of the corners of the mouth, along with skin lesions (sores)


- all ages 0.6 mg/1000 Kcal
- pregnancy 0.3 mg extra
- lactation 0.5 mg extra
** Ratio of B1:B2 should be close to 1:1

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources - widely distributed in small amounts
     - Excellent - organ meats, milk, cheese, eggs, green leafy vegetables
     - Good - whole grains, legumes, brewer’s yeast

Vitamin B3 - Niacin
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) non-toxic
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Deficiency - causes a disease called Pellagra which affects the skin, the nervous system, and the intestinal tract. Deficiency occurs primarily when a diet consists largely of Indian corn (maize).


- based on a unit called the Niacin Equivalent (NE)
- average person eating approx. 2000 Kcal requires:
- adult - men 13-14 NE/day
           - women 14-18 NE/day
- pregnancy 20 NE/day

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources
       -Best - Organ meats, brewer’s yeast, peanut butter
      -Good - meat, poultry, fish

Vitamin B5 - Pantothenic Acid
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) non-toxic
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) aids in the production of adrenal hormones
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes)
Deficiency - causes stomach ache and burning feet.


- adults 4-7 mg/kg
- pregnancy/lactation no evidence that more is needed

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources
       - Best - eggs, liver, salmon, whole grain cereals
                   - present in all plant and animal tissues

Vitamin B6 - Pyridoxine
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) non-toxic
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) involved in more bodily functions than any other single nutrient
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Deficiency - rare because B6 is found in most foods


- related to protein intake
- adult - men 12.2 mg/day
           - women 2.0 mg/day
- children 35-50 % above adult needs
- increased RDA in pregnancy, oral contraceptive users,
  elderly, cardiac failure patients, chronic alcoholics.

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources
       - Best - yeast, wheat germ, pork, glandular meats, cereals, legumes
       - Poor - milk, eggs, fruits, veggies

Vitamin B12 - Cobolamine
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) non-toxic
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes)
Deficiency - causes anemia -
vegetarians are particularly susceptible to B12 deficiency and must therefore pay attention to the foods they eat or take supplements


- adults 2.0 ug/day
- pregnancy/lactation 2.6 ug/day

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources
        - Rich - liver, kidney, lean meat
        - Good - milk, egg, fish, cheese
       - Poor - pasteurized or evaporated milk

BIOTIN (a B Vitamin)
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) non-toxic, helps metabolize fats and carbohydrates
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) deficiency - causes a decreased immunity but is rare because it can be manufactured in the intestinal tract from food


30-100 ug/day

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources - cooked egg yolk, kidney, liver, mushrooms, nuts, yeast

VITAMIN C - Ascorbic Acid
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) non-toxic
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) used in the formation of collagen which is required for wound healing, ligament repair, etc.
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) deficiency - causes Scurvy - internal bleeding, weak bones and teeth


- adults 60 mg/day
- infant 35 mg/day for first year
- child --> 11 years 45 mg/day
- older child up to 60 mg/day
- pregnancy 80 mg/day
- lactation 110 mg/day

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources - citrus fruits, raw green vegetables, tomatoes, kiwi, etc.

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) non-toxic
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) deficiency
- causes megaloblastic anemia where red blood cells are oversized and do not transport oxygen properly.


- adults 180-200 ug/day
- pregnancy 400 ug/day

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources
      - Rich - dark green leafy vegetables, spinach, broccoli, liver, kidney, lima beans
- Good - lean beef, potatoes, whole wheat bread
      - Poorer - most meats, milk, eggs, most fruits

Fat Soluble Vitamins

VITAMIN A - Retinol
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) toxic - toxicity  causes enlargement of the spleen, headache, peeling skin
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) deficiency
- causes night blindness


- men 1000 RE/day
- women 800 RE/day
- children 400-700 RE/day
- older child up to 60 mg/day
- pregnancy 1300 RE/day
- lactation 1100-1200 RE/day
Note - 1 Retinol Equivalent (RE) = 1 ug retinol or 6 ug Beta Carotene

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources
       - Retinol - storage organs (liver, kidney), fish oils, animal fats
        - Beta Carotene - dark green leafy vegetables, yellow vegetables, yellow and orange fruit (other than Oranges)

VITAMIN E - Tocophenol
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes)
not likely to be toxic


- adult male 10 mg alpha TE/day
- adult female 8 mg alpha TE/day

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources - wheat germ oil, Soya bean oil, corn oil, green plants

VITAMIN D - Vit D3 and D2
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) toxic
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) deficiency
- causes Rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults. Both of these conditions are bone softening disorders which cause bones to be malformed. Vitamin D helps bring Calcium into bones to make them strong.


- adults 5 ug/day (200 IU) 1 IU = .025 ug
- children 10 ug/day
- pregnancy 10 ug/day
- lactation 10 ug/day

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources - A major source comes from the skin where a compound in the skin is converted by sunlight into Vitamin D. Sources also include yeast, fish liver oils, and fortified milk.

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) toxic
-Vitamin K is used to make blood clotting factors
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) deficiency
- causes defective coagulation (clotting) of blood.


- not specific - between 70 and 140 ug/day
- males approx. 80 mg/day
- females approx. 65 mg/day
- infant formulas should contain 4 ug/100 Kcal

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources - Up to 50% comes from bacterial synthesis in the gut.
                      - food sources include cabbage, spinach, broccoli, lettuce, cheese, egg yolks

Important Minerals

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) non-toxic - only 25-35% absorbed from diet
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) deficiency
- causes weak bones, bad teeth, muscle spasms

RDA Age Male Female
8-11 800 mg 900 mg
12-24 1200 mg 1200 mg
>24 800 mg 800 mg
1200 mg post menopause

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources - milk, cheese, yogurt, broccoli, spinach, turnips, beans, almonds

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) well-absorbed (60-65%)
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) deficiency
- causes irritability, weakness, blood cell disorders

RDA - same as for Calcium

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources - occurs naturally in dairy and meat products; also found in processed food and as a preservative in soda pop
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Note - It is important to understand that Phosphorus binds with Calcium in the blood and is excreted as a waste product.  That will cause more calcium to drawn out of the bones to keep blood levels of calcium at normal levels.  Excess phosphorus in the blood can therefore lead to weakened bones.  The average North American diet has 4 times the required phosphorus!! This is largely due to the amount of phosphorus found in processed foods and soda pop, which are over consumed in our society.  It is also worth noting that some experts debate whether or not the Calcium found in dairy products is of any use to the body because the naturally occuring  phosphorus in these products may simply bind with the calcium leaving it inactive.

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) toxic
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) deficiency
- causes anemia due to decreased red blood cells and hemoglobin


- males 10 mg/day
- females 15-18 mg/day

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources
       - Best - liver
       - Next Best - oysters, shellfish, kidney, meat, poultry

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) important because it is used in all living cells
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) deficiency
- neuromuscular irritability


- males 350 mg/day
- females 300 mg/day
- pregnancy 450 mg/day
- lactation 450 mg/day

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources - widely distributed, part of chlorophyll in green vegetables, found in cocoa, nuts, cereals, grains, meat (best source), milk, seafood.

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) aids in collagen formation and therefore wound healing as well as enhancing the immune system to help fight infections. Excess causes intestinal upset.
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) deficiency
- causes growth retardation


- males 15 mg/day
- females 12 mg/day
- pregnancy extra 5 mg
- lactation extra 10 mg

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources
        - Good - meat. liver, eggs, seafood (oysters)
        - Better - wheat germ, lima beans

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) electrolyte - excess causes water retention, high blood pressure in susceptible individuals only

- RDA - recommended 500 mg/day, children lower

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources - seasoning, in cooking and processing, protein foods, some antacids

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) electrolyte - excess causes hyperkalemia (ie-high potassium in blood)
rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) deficiency
- cardiac disturbances

- RDA - none; safe/average level is 0.8-1.5 g/1000 Kcal (or 2000 mg/day)

rd_arrow.gif (101 bytes) Sources
           - Best - apricots, cantalopes, honeydew melons
           - Good - bananas, fruit juices, dried beans, legumes, nuts
          - Adequate - milk, meat, cereals

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