Do you know what vitamins actually are and why your body needs them? Not many of us do, however they are vital for your body to work effectively.

Vitamins and minerals are considered vital nutrients which are sourced through eating a balanced diet. Fruit and vegetables are good sources of vitamins, with some offering specific vitamin benefits. Some people may be required to take supplements to boost their specific intake of vitamins. One particular group are dieters, who require a high level of vitamins when dieting to replace the nutrients lost. There are two types of vitamins, including fat-soluble and water-soluble.

Empty plate surrounded by loads of vegetables

Fat-soluble vitamins include:

Vitamin A – helps with vision in dim light and strengthening the body’s immunity against infections. Cheese, eggs and yoghurt are good sources of this vitamin

Vitamin D – important for bone and teeth healthiness. Eggs, oily fish and fortified breakfast cereals are good sources of vitamin D. Additionally the body also acquires most of its vitamin D requirements from sunlight on the skin.

Vitamin E – helps to maintain cell structure. This vitamin is acquired through eating nuts and seeds, amongst others.

Vitamin K – this vitamin helps the body with blood clotting and developing strong bones. Good sources of vitamin K include green leafy vegetables, vegetable oils and cereals. Water-soluble vitamins include:

Vitamin C – helps to protect cells, maintains healthy connective tissue and helps to heal wounds. Good sources of vitamin C include oranges, peppers, potatoes and strawberries.