With the summer approaching, it is easy to fall out of routine when it comes to health. Sleeping in and staying up late makes having three balanced meals even more difficult than usual. Still, no matter how lazy your summer days may be, it is important to continue to get the necessary daily vitamins and nutrients.
It’s no surprise to anyone that the best way to receive all these nutrients is from natural foods, but for some dietary restrictions and allergies makes taking supplements a necessity. HCMSU put together a list of ten essential vitamins and nutrients and foods in which they can be found.
Vitamin A helps your eyes adjust to light changes and also helps keep your eyes, skin and mucous membranes moist.
- Foods rich in Vitamin A include liver, sweet potatoes, carrots, mangoes, spinach, cantaloupe, milk, egg yolk, mozzarella cheese
Vitamin B6 is important for metabolism and also for brain function. Vitamin B6 deficiency can result in a form of anemia.
- Foods rich in Vitamin B6 include avocado, banana, beans, cereal, meats, oatmeal, poultry, and seeds.
Vitamin B12 is also important for a healthy metabolism as well as normal cell division.
- Foods rich in Vitamin B12 include cheese, eggs, fish, meat, milk, and yogurt.
Vitamin C aids in wound healing and the formation of red blood cells as well as boosts alertness and concentration.
- Foods rich in Vitamin C include broccoli, grapefruit and grapefruit juice, kiwi, oranges, pepper, potato, strawberries, and tomato.
Folic Acid is essential for the development of the central nervous system and also helps to make both DNA and RNA.
- Foods rich in Folic Acids include vegetables such as spinach and greens, asparagus, citrus fruits, melons, strawberries, fortified grains, legumes, beans, nutritional yeast, eggs, and organ meats such as liver.
Vitamin E plays a key role in forming red blood cells and maintaining cell membranes.
- Foods rich in Vitamin E include margarine, corn oil, cod-liver oil, hazelnuts, peanut butter, safflower oil, sunflower seeds, and wheat germ.
Iron is the key component of red blood cells and many enzymes.
- Foods rich in Iron include fortified cereals, beans, lentils, beef, eggs.
Vitamin K plays a key role in promoting strong bones and maintaining normal blood clotting.
- Foods rich in Vitamin K include green leafy vegetables, soybean oil, broccoli, alfalfa, cooked spinach, and fish oil.
Vitamin D helps to activate calcium and phosphorus — important minerals for keeping bones strong — into the bloodstream.
- Foods rich in Vitamin D include fish, and it is also important to get an abundance of natural sunlight.
Calcium is essential for bone growth and strength, blood clotting, muscle contraction, and the transmission of nerve signals.
- Foods rich in Calcium include milk, yogurt, hard cheeses, fortified cereals, and spinach.
A great way to explore some of these new fruits and vegetables is at the Michigan State Farm Stand. The Farm Stand runs every Thursday from 11:00 am to 5:30 pm and has a variety of organically grown vegetables.