The Essential Vitamin and Mineral List

Essential Vitamins and Minerals

A group of essential nutrients that our body needs are the vitamins and minerals. These perform many functions to keep us healthy. This includes strengthening our bones, bolstering our immune system, breakdown the food we eat and clotting our blood when we cut ourselves.

Without them we would be a wreck and not able to function in normal daily life.

There follows a list of the most essential vitamins and minerals we need. Each one has a link to a page which will show more detail such as where it can be found and what our daily recomended intake should be.

Have a read and stay fit and healthy !

The Vitamin List:

  1. Vitamin A –

The next ones are often put in a group called the "B Vitamins".

  1. Vitamin B1 or Thiamin –
  2. Vitamin B2 or Riboflavin –
  3. Vitamin B3 or Niacin –
  4. Vitamin B6 or Pyridoxine –
  5. Vitamin B9 or Folic Acid –
  6. Vitamin B12 or Cobalamin –
  7. Vitamin C or Ascorbic Acid –
  8. Vitamin D orCholecalciferol –
  9. Vitamin E or Tocopherols –
  10. Vitamin K –

The Mineral List:

  1. Calcium –
  2. Iodine –
  3. Iron –
  4. Magnesium –
  5. Potassium –
  6. Selenium –
  7. Sodium Chloride or Salt –
  8. Zinc​ –

What are Anti-Oxidants

There has been a lot written about anti-oxidants and how we should all have more of them. What are they? and how can we consume more in our diet?

During our bodies normal processes chemicla waste is produced. This waste is known as "free radicals". Many studies have shown that too much of this substance can cause serious problems. Free Radicals have been linked as a cause in Cancer, heart disease, premature ageing and a weakened immune system.

By eating a diet high in anti-oxidants we can help our bodies to neutralize this excess chemical waste before it can do any damage.

Anti-Oxidants includemany of the vitamins and minerals written about above. Ones like Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Beta-Carotene (Vitamin A) and Selenium. This means that a diet high in fresh fruit and vegetables, nuts, seeds and pulses will be excellent at providing all you need and they key to living a long healthy life. 

Vitamin and Mineral Supplements

In the preceding section, which showed the recommended daily amounts (RDA) of various vitamins and minerals – how do we know we are getting the right amounts? and if we need to take a supplement.

Generally speaking if your diet is well balanced with plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, high in lean meat and fish and low in saturated fats you should be fine. In fact if you do take a supplement you may do yourself more harm then good. As we saw above taking an excess of some of the vitamins and minerals can lead to bad side-effects and be toxic to us.

Saying that there are some groups of people may need to take a supplement. This includes pregnant woman who may need more folate to help the growth of the foetus. People with anemia can be prescribed an Iron supplement to help comabt the symptoms. Post-menopausal woman may be advised to take a Calcium and Magnesium supplement to warn of oestoporosis. If you think you may need a supplement take some time and talk to a medical/health professional first.

The other thing about supplements is that they are not easily broken down by the body and thus not absorbed very well. Before you go out and waste money on pills you may not need take a look at improving your diet. Your body will thank you for it in the long run.

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Vitamin B2 or Riboflavin

Cauliflower - Vitamin B2

UK – 1100ug (Female), 1300ug (Males)

USA – 1100ug (Female), 1300ug (Males)

Needed For: Keeps the skin, nervous system and eyes healthy, working with the other "B" vitamins to help break-down and release energy from the food we eat.

Found In: Wholegrains, Yeast Extract, vegetables and diary products. UV light from fluorescent tubes and other light bulbs can destroy B2, so these foods should be stored out of the light.

Go here to find the vitamins for men and women

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