All about Vitamins A and B
From early childhood, parents, teachers, and others have tried to impress on us the role of vitamins in maintaining normal metabolic processes and, thus, good health. You learned from them that vitamins are essential for the body to function normally and stay well. They are also important for growth.
Vitamins are found in the food you eat and the beverages that you drink. In fact, in recognition of their importance, you often include vitamin supplements in your diet.
But while you recognize the benefits of vitamins, what do you actually remember about them? For example, you always hear about vitamins A and B, but do you really know or recall what these vitamins do for you? What are the sources of these vitamins? What happens when you lack vitamins A and B?
Vitamin A is necessary for the growth and repair of body tissues. For those who want smooth, soft, and disease-free skin, vitamin A is essential. It also helps protect the mouth, nose, throat, and lungs from infections.
It provides better eyesight and aids bone and teeth formation. These benefits make this vitamin necessary in a child’s diet.
It is comforting to know that this important vitamin is available in different foods. Yellow vegetables such as carrots, squash, and sweet potatoes are rich sources of vitamin A. Dairy products such as milk, an ideal breakfast beverage, are also packed with vitamin A. If you pair milk with cereal and finish off with fruit, you will have a healthy, filling and balanced breakfast. Cereals are also a great source of carbohydrates, proteins, and B-vitamins that the body needs extra energy and increased stamina.
It is essential to have enough vitamin A in the body because a lack of this vitamin can cause itching and dry skin, loss of smell and appetite, night blindness, fatigue and susceptibility to infections.
True, sticks and stones may break your bones, but vitamin B deficiency can cause damage not only to your bones but also to organs like the liver and skin. When you fail to take enough vitamin B, deficiency symptoms such as fatigue, muscular weakness, loss of smell and appetite, sluggishness, and even paralysis may set in.
This vitamin is not stored very long in the body. It is excreted in the urine. Therefore, regular intake of vitamin B is recommended to replenish its loss.
Vitamin B is also known as vitamin B complex. This is because it is comprised of similarly structured compounds, which include B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B5 (pantothenic acid), B6 (pyridoxine), B (biotin), B12 (cobalamin), and folic acid.
It is useful to know that there are a lot of food products rich in vitamin B. These foods include grains, beans, green leafy vegetables, banana, and orange.
Recognizing its importance, food manufacturers now supplement their products with vitamin B.
It is best to take vitamin B-rich foods in the morning, so our body will have enough energy for your activities throughout the day.
With people becoming increasingly conscious about health, it is only proper to keep in mind the role and importance of vitamins like A and B. Eating the right kinds of food is basic to good health. So when you think about food to include in your diet, think not only about taste and convenience but also what vitamins these will provide your body.