Vitamins

Appears in

The New Vegetarian

The New Vegetarian

By Colin Spencer

Published 1986

  • About
It’s currently very fashionable to worry about vitamin intake. But in fact we need vitamins in such small amounts that we are very unlikely to suffer from deficiency as long as we eat a varied diet.

There are about thirteen recognized vitamins in all, and they fall into two main groups: water-soluble (B group vitamins, vitamin C and folic acid) and fat-soluble (vitamins A, D, E and K). Water-soluble vitamins dissolve in the blood and tissue fluid and cannot be stored in the body for long. They are also easily lost in cooking, so a regular daily intake is essential. Fat-soluble vitamins, on the other hand, are stored by the body in the liver and fatty tissues and therefore don’t really need to be consumed in daily amounts. They are also easier to retain in foods as they are more stable in cooking and processing. Vitamin requirements will depend on a number of factors such as age, sex, occupation, diet and lifestyle. Requirements for special needs are given on Chapter 6. A breakdown of the individual vitamins and their functions is.