Fat Soluble Vitamins

What Are Fat Soluble Vitamins?

carrotsVitamins are vital for healthy and proper functioning of our body. The main classification of vitamins is in two main groups: water soluble and fat soluble vitamins. Fat soluble vitamins are stored in the liver and fat tissues. This is the reason why these vitamins are excreted from the body slowly and for a longer period of time. This is actually a pretty unwanted characteristic because there are greater chances for vitamin toxicity if significant amounts of certain fat soluble vitamins are taken. Of course a normal and healthy diet can’t cause toxicity; it is usually caused when vitamin supplements are taken for a longer period of time.

On the other hand it is still possible to experience fat soluble vitamin deficiency. This can happen in people who have diet poor in these vitamins and in people who have certain gastrointestinal problems that prevents them from absorbing fats from the intestine. In that case taking vitamin supplements is often recommended.

List of Fat Soluble Vitamins

Vitamins A, D, E and K belong to the group of fat soluble vitamins. Let’s find out more about their benefits, toxicity and sources.

Vitamin A

Benefits:

  • Improves vision
  • Vital for bone growth
  • Good for the reproductive system
  • Great for healthy skin
  • Acts as an antioxidant

Toxicity can result in:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Headaches
  • Vision problems
  • Possible birth defects
  • Liver problems
  • Bone problems

Food sources:

  • Dairy products
  • Egg yolks
  • Liver
  • Fish
  • Carrots
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Tomatoes,
  • Fortified cereals

Vitamin D

Benefits:

  • Prevents rickets and osteomalacia
  • Helps in the calcium and phosphorus absorption
  • Boosts the immune system
  • Vital for healthy bones and teeth

Toxicity can result in:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fatigue
  • Heart and kidney problems
  • Hypocalcaemia

Food sources:

  • Fatty fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel)
  • Fortified milk
  • Egg yolk
  • Note: Sunlight is the best source of vitamin D.

Vitamin E

Benefits:

  • Antioxidant
  • Prevents blood from clotting
  • Has vital role in the production of red blood cells

Toxicity can result in:

  • Very low chances for toxicity.
  • In case it happens, it results in nausea and weakness, intestinal problems

Food sources:

  • Fish
  • Milk
  • Egg yolk
  • Wheat germ
  • Prawns
  • Nuts
  • Soya beans
  • Sunflower seeds

Vitamin K

Benefits:

  • Very important for maintaining blood coagulation
  • Great for developing strong and healthy bones

Toxicity:

  • None recorded.

Food sources:

  • Kale
  • Spinach
  • Collards
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Other green and leafy vegetables

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