How Much Vitamins Our Body Need

Your body produces skin, muscle and bone every day. It produces rich red blood that carries nutrients and oxygen to distant outposts, and it sends nerve signals jumping along thousands of miles of brain and body pathways. It also formulates chemical messengers that navigate from organ to organ, issuing instructions that will help you maintain your life. But to do all of this, your body needs certain raw materials. These include at least 30 vitamins, minerals, and food components that your body needs but cannot make enough of itself. Vitamins and minerals are considered essential nutrients because, acting together, they fulfill hundreds of roles in the body. They help strengthen bones, heal wounds and strengthen your immune system. They also convert food into energy and repair cell damage.

Vitamin A

Vitamin A is associated with vision development and cellular growth and maintenance. The following foods are good sources of vitamin A:

  • Organ meats, such as liver and giblets (3 ounces = 1490-9126 micrograms)
  • Vegetables:
    • sweet potatoes (1 medium potato = 1096 micrograms)
    • pumpkin (1/2 cup = 953 micrograms)
    • carrots (1/2 cup = 679 micrograms)
    • spinach (1/2 cup = 573 micrograms)
    • turnip greens (1/2 cup = 441 micrograms)

Vitamin C

Vitamin C helps the body form collagen (which is the main protein used as connective tissue in the body) in blood vessels, bones, cartilage, and muscle. The following foods are good sources of vitamin C:

  • Fruits:
    • guava (1/2 cup = 188 milligrams)
    • oranges (1 medium orange = 70 milligrams)
    • kiwi (1 medium kiwi = 70 milligrams)
    • strawberries (1/2 cup = 49 milligrams)
    • cantaloupe (1/4 medium melon = 47 milligrams)
    • papaya (1/4 medium papaya = 47 milligrams)
    • pineapple (1/2 cup = 28 milligrams)
    • mango (1/2 cup = 23 milligrams)
  • Vegetables:
    • raw red sweet pepper (1/2 cup = 142 milligrams)
    • raw green sweet pepper (1/2 cup = 60 milligrams)
    • Brussels sprouts (1/2 cup = 48 milligrams)
    • broccoli (1/2 cup 38 milligrams)
    • sweet potatoes (1/2 cup = 34 milligrams)

Vitamin D

Your body needs vitamin D so that it can absorb calcium to promote bone growth and maintain strong bones and teeth. The average adult needs 600 International Units (IU) of vitamin D each day. Older adults (ages 70 and older) need 800 IU each day. Most people get some level of vitamin D through exposure to sunlight. However, using sunscreen will decrease your exposure to vitamin D.

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