A healthy diet means getting a good balance of all of the essential nutrients that our bodies require to perform necessary functions correctly, including all of the vitamins. By ensuring that you're getting these essential vitamins as part of a healthy diet, you'll look good in the outside and feel fabulous on the inside too!
Vitamins are vital for a healthy digestive system, good skin and hair, strong bones, vitality and mental health too. The following articles will help you to understand the role that vitamins play as part of a healthy diet and will show you the best foods to eat in order to get a good balance of these essential vitamins.
Vitamin A can sometimes be known by its other name, retinol; there are many benefits to vitamin A and it's one of the many essentail nutrients we need to intake via a healthy diet plan. First discovered in 1919, vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin vitamin A foods can only be sourced from animals. However, there are other ways of getting vitamin A into our bodies as part of a healthy diet; when we ingest foods that contain beta carotene, our bodies are able to convert this substance into vitamin A as and when it needs it. This is good news for vegans and vegetarians who don’t eat animal food products, as beta carotene can be found in many fruits and vegetables.
There are eight different members of the B vitamin family, and we need to include all of them as part of a healthy diet to enjoy their many benefits. The eight individual B vitamins are much more powerful when they’re working together as a team, and are known collectively as B complex. Together, the B vitamins help with the maintenance of healthy skin, hair and muscles and the immune and nervous systems. Let's take a look at each of the B vitamins, where to find them and how they contribute to good nutrition, vitality and a healthy diet.
Some of the main benefits of Vitamin C are very well known vitamins - most of us have heard about its historical use in curing scurvy in sailors, and its effectiveness at helping to keep the common cold at bay; Vitamin C is a vital component of your healthy diet plan, so you need to make sure that you're getting a good balance of vitamin C foods.
The benefits of vitamin D are especially good news for people who suffer with depression. Unlike some vitamins which are water soluble, vitamin D is fat soluble - and like all other essential nutrients, it's crucial to include vitamin D foods in your healthy diet plan. However, because vitamin D can be produced from exposure to sunlight, it is known as the ‘sunshine vitamin’.
Like vitamin D, vitamin E is a fat soluble vitamin which is sometimes also known as d-alpha tocopheryl - one of the essential nutrients that we need to survive, you need to get lots of vitamin E foods in order to reap the many benefits vitamin E has to offer. In order for our bodies to maintain the correct levels of vitamin E, we also need to make sure that we have enough zinc in our diets. Organic sources of iron such as ferrous gluconate will not harm vitamin E, but inorganic forms, such as ferrous sulphate, will destroy vitamin E and render it useless.
A water soluble substance, good levels of biotin can be found in brewer’s yeast, wheat bran, wheat germ, fish, meats and brown rice. Eggs are also a great source of biotin, but conversely, biotin levels in the body can be reduced if you consume large amounts of egg whites, which could be worth watching out for if you use egg whites as part of a body building or weight training diet.
Biotin is used by the body for the upkeep of skin, hair and sweat gland health, and it's also key in the production of energy.
It’s rare to suffer from a biotin deficiency in adulthood, but for babies without the correct levels of biotin, cradle cap and ongoing diarrhoea can become problematic. However, for adults who are on long-term antibiotics, a biotin supplement will be required.
Another of the fat soluble vitamins, vitamin K has earned the name of 'the anti haemorrhagic vitamin’ due to the effect it has on blood clotting - one of many essential nutrients, you need to ensure that you get enough vitamin K foods in your healthy diet, so that you can get all of the benefits that vitamin K has to offer.