Vitamins: What are they and what do they do?

  • Vitamins are organic compounds that are essential in very small amounts for supporting normal physiologic function.
  • We need vitamins in our diets, because our bodies can’t synthesize them quickly enough to meet our daily needs.
  • The study of Vitamins called "VItaminology".
  • all of these are essential nutrients, Vitamins measured in International Units (IU).
Fruits and Vegetables are major resources for
  • Vitamins have three characteristics:
  • They’re natural components of foods; usually present in very small amounts.
  • They’re essential for normal physiologic function (e.g., growth, reproduction, etc).
  • When absent from the diet, they will cause a specific deficiency.
Root Vegetables
  • There are 13 known vitamins.
  • Vitamins are generally categorized as either fat-soluble or water-soluble depending on whether they dissolve best in either lipids or water.
  • Fat-Soluble Vitamins: A, D, E, and K
  • Water-Soluble Vitamins: B-Complex and Vitamin C
  • Vitamins always contain carbon, so they are described as "organic."

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