VITAMINS, MINERALS AND SUPPLEMENTS

Monday, August 15, 2011



VITAMINS, MINERALS AND SUPPLEMENTS


Vitamins
1.1 Vitamin A
1.2 Vitamin B1 (thiamin)
1.3 Vitamin B2 (riboflavin)
1.4 Vitamin B3 (niacin)
1.5 Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine)
1.6 Vitamin B12
1.7 Vitamin C
1.8 Vitamin D
1.9 Vitamin E
1.10 Folic acid
1.11 Vitamin K

[2]
MINERALS
2.1 Calcium
2.2 Chromium
2.3 IODINE
2.4
IRON
2.5
Magnesium
2.6
Potassium
2.7
Selenium
2.8
Zinc

[3] Supplements
3.1 Omega-3 fatty acids
3.2
Echinacea
3.3
Ginkgo
3.4 G
inseng




[1] Vitamins



Vitamin B3 (niacin)
How much?

Men: 16 mg
Women: 14 mg
Why you need it:

Necessary for proper functioning of the digestive system, skin and nerves; helps convert food to energy.
Good to know:
Can cause skin flushing; may be prescribed to treat high cholesterol but should be used only under a doctor's care because of potentially severe side effects.
Food sources:
Meat, fish, poultry, eggs.
Vitamin C
How much?

Men: 90 mg
Women: 75 mg
(Smokers should add an extra 35 mg)

Why you need it:
Important for wound healing; boosts immune system; required for growth and repair of tissues in all parts of body.
Good to know:
No studies confirm vitamin C prevents colds although it may shorten the length of a cold; excessive amounts may lead to upset stomach and diarrhea.
Food sources:
Citrus fruits, tomatoes, kiwi, strawberries.
Vitamin D
How much?

Ages 51-70: 400 IU (10 mcg)
Age 71+: 600 IU (15 mcg)
Why you need it: Helps the body absorb calcium; may protect against heart disease, cancer, diabetes and several autoimmune diseases.
Good to know: The current recommendation is under review and may soon increase substantially. See also "D to the Rescue."
Food sources: Sun exposure provides the body's main supply of vitamin D; fatty fish, fortified milk and juices also contribute.
Vitamin E
How much?

Men and women: 15 mg
Why you need it:
Helps protect cells from damage; may reduce the risk of developing cancer, heart disease and other chronic diseases, but further research is needed.
Good to know:
If you take a blood thinner, talk to your doctor before taking supplements; vitamin E increases bleeding risk.
Food sources:
Vegetable oils, nuts, fruits, vegetables.


Folic acid


Iron
How much?

Men and women: 8 mg
Why you need it:
Essential for healthy red blood cells.
Good to know:
Men and women over 50 generally should not take a mutivitamin containing iron unless they have been diagnosed with iron deficiency.
Food sources:
Meat, eggs, fortified bread and grain products.



Magnesium
How much?

Men: 420 mg
Women: 320 mg
Why you need it:
Supports a healthy immune system; helps keep bones strong; regulates heart rhythm.
Good to know: Magnesium-rich foods may help protect against the development of type 2 diabetes; may also decrease the risk of high blood pressure in women.
Food sources: Whole grains, nuts, green vegetables.

Potassium
How much?

Men and women: 4700 mg


Zinc
How much?

Men: 11 mg
Women: 8 mg
Why you need it:
Aids in wound healing; keeps sense of smell and taste sharp.


Omega-3 fatty acids
What does it do:

Important for blood clotting, cell division, relaxation and contraction of muscles.
Good to know:
The omega-3 fatty acids plentiful in fatty fish and fish oil supplements have built a powerful reputation for reducing the risk of a second heart attack. Studies on fish oil and memory have had mixed results. May interact with blood thinners.
Echinacea
What does it do:
This native American plant may reduce the duration of a cold.
Good to know:
Study results are mixed about whether it can prevent colds and other infections.

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