The importance of vitamins within the human body, and virtually every bodily function that occurs cannot be overstated. For instance, vitamins provide metabolism for normal growth,
the formation of bones and tissues, and protect against viruses and disease. Vitamins also assist in the formation of hormones, blood cells, and countless chemicals within the human body. Vitamins are also necessary for metabolism and create metabolically active enzymes which are required for numerous bodily functions to occur.
Vitamins are classified within one of two following categories: water-soluble or fat-soluble. There are thirteen primary vitamins, four that are fat-soluble and nine that are water-soluble. Water-soluble vitamins dissolve easily in water, and are readily removed from the body. Since water-soluble vitamins are not stored within the human body, daily intake of foods containing the various vitamins is required. Vitamins that are fat-soluble are absorbed through the intestinal tract with the help of lipids (fats).
Since fat-soluble vitamins are absorbed within the body, they have a higher probability of causing hypervitaminosis (a condition of high storage levels of vitamins, which can lead to toxic symptoms) than do water-soluble vitamins. Therefore, it is imperative that each individual monitor their intake of all vitamins and nutritional supplements.
Retinoids (retinol, carotenoids, Beta-Carotene), is a fat-soluble vitamin that is involved in several bodily functions including vision, embryonic development, support of various tissues, and immune activation and support.
Thiamine is water soluble and is one of the 12 vitamins within the B complex group. Thiamine is required for glucose metabolism, muscle and nerve function, and aids in the functionality of the heart, brain, and digestive system.
Riboflavin, a water-soluble vitamin that is required for normal red blood cell production and body growth. In Addition, riboflavin promotes healthy hair, skin, and nails and maintains mouth, lip, and tongue function.
Niacin, or niacinamide, is a water-soluble vitamin that is necessary for natural digestion and assists in converting food into energy. Niacin also helps to maintain enzyme activity and nervous cell signaling within the body.
Pantothenic acid supports the enzyme functions that allow carbohydrates, proteins and fats to be broken down into usable energy. Pantothenic acid supports the immune system and prevents damage from infections.
Pyridoxine, pyridoxamine, or pyridoxal is involved in fat, protein, and carbohydrate metabolism. Pyridoxine also supports the immune system through antibodies synthesis and helps regulate sodium and potassium levels within the body.
Biotin primary role is to promote the metabolic processing of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Biotin is required to create fatty acids and amino acids and assists in red blood cell synthesis. Biotin also promotes healthy hair, skin and nails.
Folic acid is essential in the synthesis of ribonucleic (RNA) and deoxyribonucleic (DNA) acids. Folic acid also contributes to the growth and development of the body, particularly in the division of nerve cells and transmitters.
Cyanocobalamin promotes the synthesis of red blood cells and the enzyme processes required to convert carbohydrates, proteins, and fats into energy. Cyanocobalamin supports the central and peripheral nervous systems.
Ascorbic acid acts as an antioxidant and protects against damage caused by free radicals. Ascorbic acid also promotes the synthesis of collagen and is present in the synthesis of carnitine and neurotransmitters.
Ergocalciferol, cholecalciferol assists in balancing calcium and phosphorus levels; allowing the bones to absorb minerals and achieve continual reformation. Vitamin D promotes the absorption of calcium and aids in healthy growth.
Tocopherols allow blood capillaries to dilate and assist in regulating the formation of blood clots and scar tissue. Tocopherols prevent various fatty acids, vitamins, and hormones from being destroyed via free radicals.
Phylloquinone, menaquinones control the enzymes required to initiate the clotting sequence and reduce the amount of blood that is lost through an injury. Phylloquinone assists in maintaining bone mass and as an antioxidant.