Vitamins in Everyday Foods

Vitamins Appearing in Everyday Foods

It’s no doubt that vitamins are important for your health. They support immune system function, healthy blood sugar, cognitive function, energy production, and a stable mood. More often than not, the best form of a vitamin doesn’t come from a lab, it comes from nature, and adequate dietary intake of fruits, vegetables, and other healthy foods is often enough to support basic vitamin requirements.

Below is a list of the most important vitamins for health and their best dietary sources:

Vitamin A

Also known as: retinol; beta-, alpha-, and gamma-carotene; and beta-cryptoxanthin

Benefits: antioxidant; immune system support; eye, skin, and bone health

Best sources: organ meats (liver, giblets, etc.), carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, and leafy greens (kale, spinach, collard greens, etc.)

Vitamin B1

Also known as: thiamine

Benefits: energy production, cognitive function, prevents Wernicke’s encephalopathy

Best sources: liver, eggs, beef, poultry, fish, dried beans

Vitamin B2

Also known as: riboflavin

Benefits: energy production, eye and skin health, helps treat neonatal jaundice

Best sources: liver, eggs, beef, poultry, fish, and leafy greens

Vitamin B3

Also known as: niacin

Benefits: energy production, elevates HDL (“good”) cholesterol, lowers triglycerides, helps prevent cardiovascular disease

Best sources: liver, eggs, beef, poultry, fish, peanuts, dried beans

Vitamin B5

Also known as: pantothenic acid

Benefits: energy production, lowers LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and triglycerides

Best sources: beef, poultry, eggs, mushrooms, yeast, wheat germ, and rice

Vitamin B6

Also known as: pyridoxine

Benefits: energy production, immune system support, neurotransmitter synthesis, helps lower homocysteine, helps prevent cardiovascular disease risk

Best sources: liver, milk, beef, poultry, eggs, and chickpeas

Vitamin B7

Also known as: biotin

Benefits: assists in the breakdown of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins; may help support blood sugar and hair re-growth

Best sources: organ meats, egg yolk, legumes, and nuts

Vitamin B9

Also known as: folic acid or folate

Benefits: prevents neural tube birth defects, may help prevent heart disease, stroke, cancer, depression, and rheumatoid arthritis, can benefit cognitive function

Best sources: liver, grains, leafy greens, citrus fruit juices, legumes

Vitamin B12

Also known as: cyanocobalamin and methylcobalamin

Benefits: energy production, adequate intake prevents pernicious anemia, fatigue, depression, and cognitive impairment

Best sources: organ meats, eggs, beef, poultry, and shellfish

Vitamin C

Also known as: ascorbic acid

Benefits: antioxidant, anti-viral (especially when administered intravenously), prevents scurvy

Best sources: most fruits, cruciferous vegetables (cabbage, broccoli, etc.), and red and green bell peppers

Vitamin D

Also known as: ergocalciferol (D2) and cholecalciferol (D3)

Benefits: immune support, assists calcium absorption, may enhance fat loss, can help prevent heart disease and cancer, prevents rickets

Best sources: fatty fish (salmon, sardines, mackerel, catfish), mushrooms, liver, and eggs

Vitamin E

Also known as: tocopherol and tocotrienol

Benefits: antioxidant, nervous system health

Best sources: vegetable and nut oils (corn, safflower, etc.), tomato products (sauce, paste, etc.), spinach, wheat germ, sunflower seeds, and nuts

Vitamin K

Also known as: phylloquinone (K1) and menaquinone (K2)

Benefits: assists in blood coagulation and bone metabolism

Best sources: leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables, beef, eggs


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