Here, we are going to know about fat soluble vitamin functions deeply. But, before that we need to understand basics about micro nutrients.
Micro-nutrients (Micro means very small)
Nutrients, which are required in very much smaller qualities as compared to macro-nutrients in the body of an organism.
Types of micro-nutrients
- Vitamins (organic compounds): Water-soluble & Fat-soluble vitamins.
- Minerals (inorganic compounds): Macro-minerals & Trace minerals.
Vitamins are micro organic compounds, made up by plants and animals which can be broken down by heat, acid or air.
Categorized into two types:
i). Water-soluble &
ii). Fat-soluble vitamins.
i). Water soluble vitamins
Vitamin-B group & Vitamin C
ii). Fat soluble vitamins
Vitamin A, D, E and K:
Vitamins which doesn’t dissolve in water and best dissolve in fat or a source of fat. After complete absorption and consumption of these vitamins, they stored in liver and fatty/muscle tissues for a future purpose of body requirement.
Fat-soluble vitamin functions and feautures
- Vitamin A:
(RDA= 600 mcg(µg)/day (retinol) & 4800 µg/day (beta-carotene)),mcg means microgram.
- Exist in 2 natural forms = Retinol (animal source) & Beta-carotene (plant source)
- Functions: Helps in vision/eye health (specially night vision), cell division, healthy skin, organ functioning and building immunity, healthy liver and bone health.
- Acts as a strong antioxidant for cellular membranes.
- Required for growth and reproduction.
- Sources: Meat, Egg, Fish oil, Milk & Dairy products, Spinach, Mustard, Bathua, Mint, Pumpkin, Carrot, Papaya, Melon, Mango, Apricots, Sweet potato etc.
- Deficiencies: Night blindness, Conjunctival Xerosis (Dryness of front thin membrane layer of eye), Bitot’s spot (Dark grey or black spots in cornea of eye), Corneal Xerosis, Follicular Hyperkeratosis (plugging of hair follicles) etc.
- Excess: Hypervitaminosis A (GI upset, blurred vision, headache), Hypercarotenemia, Teratogenic (Abortion & birth defects).
- Vitamin D:
(RDA= 10 µg/day OR 400 IU)
- Good health of skeletal system.
- Functions: Helps in building bone health by assisting in calcium absorption, to regulate blood calcium, cell division, reduce risk of some cancers, insulin secretion, functioning of parathyroid gland and also helps in building immunity.
- Helps in working of vitamin A, calcium and phosphorus in the body.
- Sources: Exposure to sun light, Fish liver oil, Egg yolk, Milk & milk products etc.
- Deficiencies: Rickets (children), Osteomalacia (adults).
- Excess: Constipation, Weight loss, Vomiting, Nausea, Excess thirst etc.
- Vitamin E (α-tocopherol):
(RDA= 7.5 to 10 mg/day)
- Essential for reproductive health i.e. tocopherol.
- Functions: Promotes immune system, protects vit A & vit C from oxidation, helps in anti-aging, cancer protection, prevention from cardiac issues, iron metabolism, nervous tissues health, reproduction, foetus health and reduces cholesterol level.
- Acts as an antioxidant and protects cell damages.
- Sources: Corn, Soybean, Wheat germ, Peanut, Almond, Coconut, Bajra, Barley, Wheat grain, Pumpkin seed, Melon seed, Fish oil, Spinach, Broccoli, Papaya etc.
- Deficiencies: RBC’s breakdown, Muscular dystrophy, Impairment of neuromuscular function.
- Vitamin K (Menadione):
(RDA= 55 µg/day)
- Known as coagulation vitamin (coagulation of blood in case of injury).
- Functions: Helps in blood clotting (formation of blood clotting protein), proper bone development, blood circulation and liver functioning.
- Sources: Tomatoes, Green pea, Cauliflower, French beans, Spinach, Broccoli, Cabbage, Mustard, Liver oil, Soybeans etc.
- Deficiencies: Increase in blood clotting time, Increased the chances of haemorrhage.
Fat-soluble vitamins are abundantly available with high-fat foods as they are soluble in fat or lipid and also they are much better absorbed into our bloodstream when we eat these vitamins with fatty food.-healthjaagran