Kate's Cuisine

Jun 12 2009

Niacin

Niacin is an interesting vitamin that the body creates on its own. Because the body is able to produce niacin, the recommended daily intake for men and women is assuming that the body is also making up for some of its own niacin requirement. Men are recommended to have 16mg/day while women are advised to get 14mg/day.

Niacin is very important to the body because it not only obtains energy from carbohydrates, fats, and proteins but it also helps with the creation of mucous membranes, skin, as well as aids the digestive tract. Niacin also helps control the appetite and helps with nerve function and blood circulation. What might make Niacin a superhero however is that it can help prevent pellagra, which is a disease that can lead to diarrhea, dermatitis, or even death.

Niacin is made from a protein found within the human body. Therefore, eating a diet rich in protein will also help in consuming enough of the daily Niacin that you need.

Jun 12 2009

Riboflavin

Riboflavin is part of the Vitamin B family and more specifically, is also known as Vitamin B2. This vitamin helps extract energy from carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. Riboflavin also helps control your metabolism and it also moves around to different areas of the body. Riboflavin is also very important for skin development and creating mucous membranes.

Like Thiamin, Riboflavin is found only in small quantities in food but you also only need small quantities included in your diet. Men should get 1.3mg/day and women should consume 1.1mg/day of Riboflavin. Dairy products are the best sources of riboflavin but it can also be found in enriched grain products and cereals, green, leafy vegetables, liver, beef, lamb, and eggs.

Jun 12 2009

Thiamin

Thiamin is one of those nutrients that you might see on a nutrition label and wonder what the heck it is and why the heck you need it. The fact is you don’t need much Thiamin and men are only required to get 1.2mg/day while women are recommended to get 1.1mg/day. It’s a good thing you don’t need too much because it’s only found in very minute quantities in foods such as pork, seafood, and pinto beans but it’s not found at all in refined foods.

Thiamin not only helps control your appetite but it also gets energy from carbohydrates, and helps the nervous system, heart, and muscular functions.

Jun 12 2009

Vitamin K

Vitamin K is mostly known for its power in helping blood cells, especially when it comes to clotting and because of this, it’s an important vitamin that can help with serious conditions such as hemorrhagic disease.

Men are advised to get 120ug/day of Vitamin K while 90ug/day is recommended for women. Green, leafy vegetables are by far the best source of Vitamin K so things such as broccoli, cabbage, lettuce, spinach, and chard are all excellent ways to incorporate it into your diet.

Jun 12 2009

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is a vitamin that’s mostly known for its huge antioxidant properties. Vitamin E works to find and destroy free radicals, which can be very dangerous. Free radicals are vicious molecules that can cause things such as heart disease and cancer. The antioxidants found in Vitamin E help destroy these free radicals as well as help boost the immune system. Vitamin E can also help repair damaged DNA.

Both men and women that are over the age of 19 should get 15mg/day of Vitamin E.

Vegetables oils, especially wheat germ oil, are great sources of Vitamin E. These kinds of oils can be found in salad dressings and certain margarines. Nuts, beans, and whole grains are also great sources of Vitamin E, as are green and leafy vegetables.

Jun 12 2009

Vitamin D

Vitamin D may be known as the Sunshine Vitamin because the sun’s rays do provide an excellent source of Vitamin D that is easily absorbed through our skin. However, because of its amazing ability to help with bone growth and development, it may be more appropriate to call it the Bone Vitamin.

Vitamin D helps maintain proper bone growth and development by ensuring that there are always proper levels of calcium and phosphorus in the body. In addition to being important to bone growth, Vitamin D also greatly helps with cell formation. For both of these reasons, Vitamin D is also crucial in fetal development. The vitamin can not only help with bone growth but can also act when bones are in need of repair, such as when a child develops rickets.

Because Vitamin D helps so much with bone growth, it’s important that a person take more of it as they get older and their bones are sure to become more brittle. Men and women both don’t need more than 5ug/day until the age of 50. From the ages of 51 – 70 both men and women should be sure to get 10ug/day. After the age of 70, the levels of Vitamin D needed per day jump to 15ug/day.

It’s true that the sun’s UV rays are excellent sources of Vitamin D. However, you can still include it into your diet with salmon, cod liver oil, tuna, sardines, and mackerel, which are all great sources of Vitamin D. Some breakfast cereals and certain types of milk are also fortified with the essential vitamin.

Jun 12 2009

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is one of the vitamins that most people know is important to take but many don’t know just how important it is. Vitamin C has so many benefits, not the least of which is being an extremely powerful antioxidant.

This essential vitamin also helps the body create collagen, which helps bones and teeth grow, promotes blood vessel health, and can help heal wounds! And although many know to start taking Vitamin C when they’re sick, if at  no other time, they may not necessarily know why. The reason is because Vitamin C can greatly help against infections and sickness and is most commonly known for preventing the common cold. However, other than the cold, Vitamin C can also help prevent many types of diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and cataracts.

Men over the age of 19 should make sure they are getting at least 90mg/day of Vitamin while women over the age of 19 should get at least 75mg/day. Fruits and vegetables are the highest sources of Vitamin C in foods and kiwi, oranges, broccoli, strawberries, tomatoes, and bananas are all excellent sources.

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