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Fat soluble vitamins


Vitamins are divided into two groups: water soluble and fat soluble vitamins. Fat soluble vitamins are those vitamins that dissolve into lipids or fats. This is the fat soluble vitamins definition. Fat soluble vitamins absorption occurs when these vitamins pass through the small intestine. These fat soluble vitamins get absorbed by the fat globules in the small intestine.

Bile salts also play an important role in the absorption of these vitamins in the body. Vitamins are mixed with the blood circulation from there. Fat soluble vitamins stay in the body once they are stored in the body’s tissues. Everyone should be careful and include foods that are rich in fat soluble vitamins in their diet, as these vitamins are important for various functions in the body. There are various deficiencies that occur when there is a lack of vitamins in the body. It does not really matter whether the vitamin is soluble in water or fat or whether they are derived from food or food supplements. What is more important is that each person, child or adult gets the required quantity the body needs. Remember that each vitamin has its own function and role to play in the body. The 4 fat soluble vitamins are Vitamin A, D, E and K, while the water soluble vitamins are B and C. Fat soluble vitamins are stored for longer periods and therefore present a greater threat for toxicity than water soluble vitamins. This is even more so, when such vitamins are consumed in excess. Following a well balanced diet will not lead to toxicity in healthy people.

The fat soluble vitamins list along with the benefits is given below:-

Vitamin A: This is regarded as the vision vitamin and is also known as retinol. It has many functions in the body. It helps the eyes to have a better focus on colors and backgrounds. It also helps the eye to focus when there is low visibility. This vitamin also plays an important role in reproduction, gene expression, bone growth, tooth development and cell division. Carrots, pumpkin, dark green leafy vegetables are rich sources of beta carotene, an antioxidant which the body converts into a vitamin.  

Vitamin D: This helps in the absorption and utilization of calcium and phosphorous in the body. It also helps in the formation of cartilage, and maintains healthy teeth and bones too.  Vitamin D is available in two forms, D2 and D3. The former is in eggs, liver oils, mackerel and salmon. The latter is manufactured by the body itself when it is exposed to sunlight.

Vitamin E: This vitamin is also considered an antioxidant. This plays an important role in protecting the red blood cells and fatty acids from damage. It boosts the immune system and also creates more red blood cells in the body. This helps to reduce instances of blood clotting. It can be found in prawns, almonds, peanuts and so on.

Vitamin K: It is useful to maintain good bone health. It also helps with blood clotting. This vitamin is also needed to help the body change food into energy. Green leafy vegetables like spinach, broccoli and so on are sources of this.

Submitted on January 16, 2014