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Nutrition page 7

Table: Essential vitamins and minerals summary

Nutrient

What is it for?

Food sources

Vitamin A

vision, cell reproduction, immune function, growth, reproduction, bone metabolism, skin health, cardiovascular health, antioxidant

liver, carrots, green leafy vegetables, eggs, cheese, apricots, pumpkin, sweet potato, butter, cantaloupe/rock melon

B vitamins
(including folate / folic acid)

red blood cell formation, brain and nerve function, DNA, RNA and protein synthesis, cell metabolism and function, blood sugar maintenance, muscle tone, brain and cardiovascular health

meat, poultry, vegetables, eggs, milk, nuts, wholegrains, green leafy vegetables, seeds, nuts, potatoes, bananas, lentils, chilli peppers, tempe, liver oil, liver, turkey, tuna, yeast

Vitamin C

wound healing, immunity, iron absorption, antioxidant, cofactor for vital enzymatic reactions, carnitine biosynthesis

fresh fruits such as citrus fruits and berries, tomatoes, peppers

Vitamin D

calcium absorption, healthy bones and teeth

milk, oily fish, brown rice

Vitamin E

immunity, cardiovascular health, cell structure integrity and signaling, potent antioxidant

wheat germ oil, nuts, safflower oil, corn oil, soybean oil, olives, and green leafy vegetables

Vitamin K

blood clotting, cardiovascular health

green leafy vegetables, avocado, cauliflower, broccoli, kiwifruit/gooseberries

Calcium

bone health, cell metabolism

milk, nuts, green vegetables, wholegrains, yoghurt seaweed, nuts, oranges, figs

Iodine

metabolism (thyroid hormone regulation) for growth and energy, antioxidant

iodised salt, algae, seafood, seaweed (kelp & nori), animal derived foods (eggs, meat, dairy products)

Iron

red blood cell oxygen delivery, immunity, protein synthesis, enzyme reactions, metabolism

red meat, poultry, dried fruit, green leafy vegetables lentils, beans, tofu, chickpeas

Magnesium

building bones, manufacturing proteins, releasing energy from muscle storage, and regulating body temperature

cereals, grains, vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, nuts, dairy products

Selenium

facilitates vitamin E absorption, elevates antioxidant levels, beneficial for cardiovascular and immune health

plant foods, brazil nuts, tuna, beef, and poultry

Zinc

wound healing, regulates enzyme activity and metabolic activities, cell structure integrity and cell function

red meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, nuts, whole grains, fortified breakfast cereals, and dairy products

DHA

development and maintenance of brain, eye, cardiovascular and immune health, antioxidant

oily fish, flaxseeds, walnuts, soybeans, and tofu

EPA

development and maintenance of brain, cardiovascular and immune health, antioxidant

oily fish, flaxseeds, walnuts, soybeans, and tofu

 

References

  1. The Linus Pauling Instititue at Oregon State University. http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/infocenter/vitamins
  2. Tanphaichitr V. Thiamin. In: Shils M, Olson JA, Shike M, Ross AC, eds. Modern Nutrition in Health and Disease. 9th ed. Baltimore: Williams & Wilkins; 1999:381-389.
  3. Rindi G. Thiamin. In: Ziegler EE, Filer LJ, eds. Present Knowledge in Nutrition. 7th ed. Washington D.C.: ILSI Press; 1996:160-166.
  4. Ward, EM (2002) Healthy Foods, Healthy Kids. Adams Media Corporation, Masschusetts, USA
  5. Dunn JT (1998) What's happening to our iodine? J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 83(10):3398-3400.
  6. Food and Nutrition Board, Institute of Medicine (2001) Iodine. Dietary reference intakes for vitamin A, vitamin K, boron, chromium, copper, iodine, iron, manganese, molybdenum, nickel, silicon, vanadium, and zinc. Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press; 2001:258-289.
  7. World Health Organization. Eliminating Iodine Deficiency disorders. World Health Organization, [Web page]. 04/09/2003. http://www.who.int/nut/idd.htm.
  8. Harris EW, Loewenstein JI, Azar D (1998) Vitamin A deficiency and its effects on the eye. International Ophthalmology Clinics 38 :155–161.
  9. Organisciak DT, Wang HM, Li ZY, Tso MO (1985) The protective effect of ascorbate in retinal light damage of rats. Investigative Ophthalmology in Visual Sciences 26:1580-1588.
  10. Jacques, P. F., et al (1997) Long-term vitamin C supplement use and prevalence of early age-related lens opacities. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 66(4):911-916.
  11. West S, Vitale S, Hallfrisch J, Muñoz B, Muller D, Bressler S, Bressler NM, (1994). Are antioxidants or supplements protective for age-related macular degeneration? Archives of Ophthalmology, 112:222-227.
  12. Nadalin, G, Robman, LD, McCarty, CA, Garrett, SK, McNeil, JJ, Taylor, HR, (1999) The role of past intake of vitamin E in early cataract changes. Ophthalmic Epidemiology, 6:105-112.
  13. Teikari JM, Laatikainen L, Virtamo J, et al (1998) Six-year supplementation with alpha tocopherol and beta-carotene and age-related maculopathy. Acta Ophthalmol Scand. 76:224-229
  14. Cumming RG, Mitchell P, Smith W (2000) Diet and cataract: the Blue Mountains Eye Study. Ophthalmology. 107(3):450-456.
  15. Jacques PF, Taylor A, Moeller S, et al (2005) Long-term nutrient intake and 5-year change in nuclear lens opacities. Arch Ophthalmol. 123(4):517-526.
  16. Rema, M, Mohan, V, Bhaskar, A, Shanmugasundaram, KR, (1995). Does oxidant stress play a role in diabetic retinopathy? Indian Journal of Ophthalmology, 43:17-21.
  17. Takami, Y, Gong, H, Amemiya, T, (2004). Riboflavin deficiency induces ocular surface damage. Ophthalmic Research, Volume 36(3):156-65.
  18. Pond, CM (2005). Adipose tissue and the immune system. Prostaglandins, Leukotrienes, and Essential Fatty Acids 73: 17–30.
  19. Langley-Evans, SC; Carrington LJ (2006). Diet and the developing immune system. Lupus 15: 746–752.
  20. Niec-Oszywa, A (2001) Boost your child’s immune system – the natural way. Allen & Unwin, NSW, Australia.
  21. Peat, JK et al (2004) Three-year outcomes of dietary fatty acid modification and house dust mite reduction in the Childhood Asthma Prevention Study. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology 114:807-813.
  22. Meydani, S. N., et al (1990) Vitamin E supplementation enhances cell-mediated immunity in healthy elderly. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 52(3):557-563.
  23. Meydani, S. N., et al (2005) Vitamin E and immune response in the aged: molecular mechanisms and clinical implications. Immunological Reviews. 205:269-284.

 

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