Vitamin and mineral overview
Vitamins mention in questions: MVM, vit D, C, calcium, vit E, iron, B12, (note: how
omega 3 is not a vitamin + mineral its a specialty supplement)
Calcium: is the most abundant mineral in the body –over 99% of the body’s calcium
supply is found inthe bones and teeth to support their structure. Calcium is also crucial
for proper muscle function, nerve transportation and hormonal secretion. Food high in
calcium include milk and milk alternatives, dark leafy greens, and canned salmon or
sardines (Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fn-an/nutrition/vitamin/vita-d-
Vitamin D: Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that regulates calcium and phosphorus
absorption to build strong bones and teeth. When vitamin D levels are inadequate this
cause blood levels of calcium and phosphorus to decrease resulting in calcium being
leached out from the bones in order to maintain stable blood concentrations. Thus
deficiency in vitamin D or calcium can lead to rickets in children, osteomalacia (softening
of the bones) or osteoporosis (fragile bones) in adults.
Major sources of vitamin D from food are fortified including milk and margarine.
However vitamin D does not always come from the diet as Vitamin D can be synthesized
using energy from UV light of the sun. Populations most in need of a vitamin D
supplement include anyone over the age of 50 years old and infants who are breast fed.
(Health Canada - http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fn-an/nutrition/vitamin/vita-d-eng.php )
Vitamin C: is an antioxidant needed for growth and repair of tissues in all parts of the
body. Populations who may be in need of a vitamin C supplement include: smokers,
individuals who are subjected to second hand smoke, and women who are pregnant or
breastfeeding (Vitamin C:
The primary function of Vitamin E is to act as an antioxidant. Vitamin E protects the cell
membranes from oxidation, enhances immune function, and improves the absorption of
vitamin A. True vitamin E deficiencies are uncommon in humans (1 year foods).
Premature babies of very low birth weight may be deficient in vitamin E as well as
individuals with fat-malabsorption disorders. Individuals with Crohn’s disease, cystic
fibrosis, or an inability to secrete bile from the liver sometimes require water soluble