Vitamins Review, Classification, Importance and Diseases

Vitamins Role in healthy body


You feel fresh, energetic and enthusiastic after taking particular food. What is the main reason behind that? Taking diet supplemented with adequate nutrients has a direct link with proper body functioning and healthy body. What are vitamins? Vitamins are the organic compound that humans can’t synthesize in the body; essentially required for healthy body working. Vitamins are the micro-nutrients human body require for proper functioning particularly for growth, development, fighting disease, the sustainable working environment of the human body and reproduction. From where human take vitamins? Most of the vitamins are taken from diet particularly fruits and vegetables. So we can define vitamins as

“The class of organic compounds supplemented to the human body via food or dietary supplements for adequate and accurate body working required in minute quantities.”

Types and Classes of Vitamins

There are 13 vitamins known to human for the smooth running of life functioning. The daily life long processes can be adequately accomplished by taking the recommended dose of vitamins through diet specifically veggies, eggs, meat, fish, milk, cheese, and fruits. Vitamins are divided into two subclasses

  • Fat-Soluble Vitamins
  • Water-Soluble Vitamins

Fat-Soluble Vitamins

These are the class of vitamins that are absorbed and stored in the fat; their deficiency is harmful but an excessive amount can also cause serious problems. Vitamins A, D, E and K have included in fat-soluble vitamins. Fat-soluble vitamins are easy to store in the body in comparison to water-soluble vitamin and are stored in the body with the help of fat cells and are stored in fatty tissues and key lipid storage organ ‘Liver’.

Different Types of Fat-Soluble Vitamins

Vitamin A

It is Fat-soluble Vitamin named chemically as Retinol or Retinal linked with the healthy teeth, bones and soft tissues of the body, better skin, immune system, and vision. Vitamin A deficiency can cause serious health deficiencies associated with vision and causes night blindness. Major Sources of vitamin A are milky products like cheese, butter; green leafy vegetables, beta carotene from carrot, etc.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is crucial fat-soluble vitamin; chemically called as ergocalciferol, cholecalciferol needed for healthy bones and helps in calcium absorption stored in bones. People usually called Vitamin D as “sunshine vitamin” because cholecalciferol can be synthesized by the body after being in the sunshine. Seeing the dietary recommendations enough vitamin D can be made by the body after being 15-30 minutes in sunshine three times a day. It is very difficult to take Vitamin D through diet but taking fortified milk, egg yolk, fish liver oil and milk products like yogurt, cheese, etc. Deficiency of vitamin D can cause serious bone-related disorders rickets in young children and osteoporosis in middle-aged and aged men and women.

Vitamin E

One of the fat-soluble vitamin is Vitamin K chemically named as Tocopherols or tocotrienols functioning in forming erythrocytes commonly called as Red Blood Cells (RBC’s), acts as anti-oxidant and proper usage of vitamin D. Sources of vitamin E includes green vegetables, egg, nuts, and dry fruits and whole-grain wheat. The deficiency of Vitamin E can cause Hemolytic Anemia in newborns which are the destruction of RBC’s.

Vitamin K

What will be your response if blood doesn’t clot after an injury? Isn’t it blessings in disguise the blood clotting factor? How blood clot forms and what are the key components linked with blood clot formation?

Vitamin K chemically known as Phylloquinone and menaquinones is fat-soluble vitamin linked with blood clotting. This vitamin can be taken through diet and also synthesized in our body by the intestinal bacteria. The deficiency of vitamin K can cause bleeding disorders. Some key sources of Vitamin K are green leafy vegetables, fish, liver, and egg, etc.

Water-Soluble Vitamins

Water-soluble vitamins are the type of vitamins that are stored in the aqueous environment of the cell and are required in the excessive amount due to the fast disposal from the body through urine with exception of vitamin B12 that can be stored in the liver for a long time. There are nine known water-soluble vitamins but they are divided into 2 subcategories.

  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin B Complex

Vitamin C

It is water-soluble vitamin chemically called as Ascorbic Acid. It acts as anti-oxidant, immune system booster, a key role as a co-enzyme in protein metabolism, healthy bones and teeth and maintains sufficient supply of iron in the body. Key sources of vitamin C are citrus fruit, fresh vegetables, potatoes, and fruits. Deficiency of vitamin C can lead to megaloblastic anemia.

Vitamin B 1 (Thiamin)

It is a type of water-soluble vitamin chemically called as Thiamin required for optimal body functioning and associated with other B complex vitamins in metabolism and absorption of energy. It is also linked for optimal heart and nervous system as it is linked to providing a constant supply of energy. It is helpful for the mother as they breastfeed the infants and mother to be. The inadequate supply of Thiamin can cause mild headache, dizziness, and nausea. It is an integral component of vegetables and meat. Though reports of vitamin B 1 deficiency are very not much reported but in alcoholic and old aged people are found deficient of vitamin B1.

Vitamin B 2 (Riboflavin)

It is part of B complex vitamin a subclass of water-soluble vitamins chemically known as Riboflavin is in link with other vitamins of subclass B complex helps in protein and carbohydrates metabolism. It is also helpful in the absorption of vital nutrients zinc, iron and calcium and growth, and development. Potent sources of riboflavin are milk and milk made products, leafy green vegetables, beans, eggs, and meats. Deficiency of Riboflavin can lead to mild skin related problems and itchy eyes.

Vitamin B 3 (Niacin)

It is water-soluble vitamin chemically called as Niacin aims to control cholesterol, healthy skin, healthy nerves, DNA repair and metabolism, and energy. People deficient in vitamin B 3 may feel tiredness, inflammation of skin and nerve endings. Some key sources of Niacin are egg, meat, beans, and yeasts extracts.

Vitamin B 5 (Pantothenic Acid)

One of the water-soluble vitamin B 5 known chemically as pantothenic acid is important for food metabolism, and optimal functioning of hormones and cholesterol. Deficiency of Vitamin B 5 may cause paresthesia, fatigue and tiredness, dizziness, vomiting, and cramping. Major sources of pantothenic acid are meat, eggs, milk, and milk made items and green leafy vegetables.

Vitamin B 6 (Pyridoxine)

Why do some dietitians recommend taking dry fruits and nuts regularly? The answer is very simple, as they are enriched with vitamin B 6. Vitamin B 6 helps in better mental health, stabilizing mood protein metabolism and biosynthesis. Increased uptake of proteins can help in an elevated level of pyridoxine. It also helps in biosynthesis of RBC’s. A person deficient in pyridoxine can lead to nerve and tissue damage, brain and spinal cord problems and protein deficiencies. A major chunk of vitamin B 6 can be found in meat, nuts and dry fruits, eggs, Bananas, and beans.

Vitamin B 12 (Cobalamin)

It is chemically known as Cobalamin an important contributor in DNA replication and regulations of key nerve cells with proper body and brain functioning. Lack of vitamin B 12 can cause serious nervous system linked problems and pernicious anemia. Sources of cobalamin include eggs, red meat, shellfish, fish and milk made products.

Folic Acid

Have you ever think why some of the gynecologists recommend folic acid tablets? The answer is that a mother to have to take enough amount of folate during the pregnancy; low folate in pregnant women’s associated with birth defects like spina bifida. It is linked with vitamin B 12 for red blood cells formation DNA formation and cell and tissue development. It is part of different food items like leafy green vegetables fortified with different food supplements.


An essential part of an enzyme associated with the metabolism of carbs and proteins. It can be synthesized by the body through the bacteria in the intestine. It can be found in egg yolk liver and green and leafy vegetables. Deficiency of biotin can be linked to dermatitis, enteritis or inflammation of the intestine.

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