The water-soluble vitamins are two types: B -group vitamins, and vitamin C. They are called-water soluble because they are NOT STORED in the body. Instead, they simply pass through the organs and tissues, and the excess amounts are excreted with the urine.
Exactly for this reason, it is very unlikely to overdose with those vitamins, and you bear an extremely low risk of experiencing toxicity symptoms. On the other hand, their disadvantage is that they should be consumed every day, in order to maintain their proper levels in the blood. They are responsible for your health and wellbeing, and are irreplaceable nutrient for great skin and hair!
Another drawback is that those vitamins are NOT HEAT STABLE: they break while cooking and lose their beneficial properties, unlike fat-soluble vitamins. That is why many people suffer from water-soluble vitamin deficiency symptoms.
But now lets dive in and see the types of vitamins, their functions, deficiency symptoms, RDD and foods rich in them.
B group vitamins
All B vitamins contribute to fast and healthy metabolism process.
Vitamin B1 (also called Thiamin)
- Its primary function is to help the production of energy.
- Recommended daily dose (from food): 10mg/day.
- Deficiency signs are fatigue, muscle weakness, loss of appetite, sudden pain (that lasts seconds) and tingling sensation in the feet and hands.
- Foods rich in B1 are nuts, seeds, whole grains, pork.
Vitamin B2 (also called Riboflavin)
- Its primary function is to help the body to absorb the other vitamins from the B group.
- Recommended daily dose (form food): 1.2mg/day.
- Deficiency signs are dry skin, dermatitis, flaky skin, swollen gums.
- Foods rich in B2 are meat, poultry, dairy products, eggs. People who follow a vegan diet should supplement with B2.
Vitamin B3 (also called Niacin)
- Its primary function is to act as an enzyme and convert proteins, fats, and carbs into energy.
- Recommended daily dose (form food): 15mg/day.
- Deficiency signs are dry, flaky skin, dermatitis, diarrhea, memory loss.
- Foods rich in B3 are mushrooms, meat, poultry, fish, whole grains.
Vitamin B5 (also called Pantothenic acid)
- Its function is to keep hormones balanced and metabolize fats and carbs to create energy.
- Recommended daily dose (form food): 5mg/day.
- Deficiency signs are fatigue, numbness, sudden burning pain in the feet, and hands.
- Foods rich in B5 are oranges, strawberries, whole grains, meat, poultry, fish, sweet potatoes, broccoli, milk, cauliflower.
Vitamin B6 (also called Pyridoxine)
- Its function is to stimulate the formation of hemoglobin. If you suffer from anemia, it is recommendable to supplement vitamin B6.
- Recommended daily dose (form food): 1.3mg/day
- Deficiency signs are swollen gums, dermatitis, eczema, migraine, cramps, dizziness, anemia, numbness of feet, and hands.
- Foods rich in B6 are bananas, potatoes, meat, fish, poultry, lentils, chickpeas, nuts, seeds.
Vitamin B7 (also called Biotin)
- It allows the body to process and use the nutrients from fats, proteins, and carbs coming from food sources.
- Recommended daily dose (form food): 30mgc/day.
- Deficiency signs are thinning hair, hair loss, brittle nails, skin rash, depression, fatigue.
- Foods rich in B6 are fatty fish (salmon), peanuts, eggs, sweet potatoes, almonds, liver.
Vitamin B9 (also called Folate)
- It stimulates the production of cells (red blood cells, skin cells, etc.) and helps the body with the production of DNA. It also prevents anemia. Pregnant women should supplement with B9, in order for the baby to develop properly.
- Recommended daily dose (form food): 400mcg/day. The dose for pregnant women is slightly higher- 600mcg/day.
- Deficiency signs are fatigue, weakness, inability to concentrate, heart palpitations, shortness of breath, headache, irritability.
- Foods rich in B9 are legumes, beets, broccoli, lentils, flaxseed, spinach, asparagus, avocado, green peas, peanuts.
Vitamin B12 (also called Cobalamin)
- The function of B12 to keep the neuro system healthy and in balance. Together with folate, it stimulates the creation of DNA.
- Recommended daily dose (form food): 2.4 mcg/day.
- Deficiency signs are anemia, fatigue, muscle weakness, numbness or tingling sensation in feet and hands, irritability, depression, poor memory, difficulty to maintain balance, intense symptoms of PMS, painful menstrual cycle.
- Foods rich in B12 are dairy products, fish, seafood, meat, poultry, eggs.
Vitamin C (also known as L-ascorbic acid)
- This vitamin prevents cells damage and helps the tissues to regenerate. As a result, it boosts the healing of wounds and cuts. Vitamin C also strengthens the immune system and stimulates the absorption of iron (essential to hemoglobin creation).
- Recommended daily dose (from food): 80mg/day. If you are a smoker, you need 115 mg/day.
- Deficiency signs are slow healing wounds, bruises, bleeding nose and gums, premature aging signs (wrinkles).
- Foods rich in vitamin C are citrus fruits, pepper, chili, kiwi, tomatoes, broccoli.