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Vitamins (cont.)

Vitamin E

Vitamin E naturally occurs in eight different chemical forms, but the only one that meets human requirements is alpha-tocopherol. It's needed to maintain cell integrity and act as a powerful antioxidant. Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin, so foods like nuts, seeds, and vegetable have a high content. While deficiency is rare, it can happen. Symptoms of vitamin E deficiency are peripheral neuropathy, impaired immune system, retinopathy, and skeletal myopathy.

The following is the RDA for vitamin E:

Age Males and Females Pregnancy Lactation
1-3 years 6 mg (9 IU) N/A N/A
4-8 years 7 mg (10.5 IU) N/A N/A
9-13 years 11 mg (16.5 IU) 15 mg (22.5 IU) 19 mg (28.5 IU)
14 + years 15 mg (22.5 IU) 15 mg (22.5 IU) 19 mg (28.5 IU)

Vitamin K

Vitamin K is known by many people taking blood-thinner medications. It is limited by them because of its role in blood clotting. The goal when taking blood thinners is to consume a consistent amount of vitamin K, not to eliminate it from your diet. A deficiency in vitamin K can lead to defective blood clotting and increased bleeding. The foods with the highest amount of vitamin K are kale, spinach, turnips, collards, mustard greens, and brussels sprouts.

There is no data to establish an RDA for vitamin K. Therefore, adequate intakes (AI) have been established:

Age Males Females Pregnancy Lactation
0-6 months 2.0 mcg 2.0 mcg N/A N/A
7-12 months 2.5 mcg 2.5 mcg N/A N/A
1-3 years 30 mcg 30 mcg N/A N/A
4-8 years 55 mcg 55 mcg N/A N/A
9-13 years 60 mcg 60 mcg N/A N/A
14-18 years 75 mcg 75 mcg 75 mcg 75 mcg
19+ years 120 mcg 90 mcg 90 mcg 90 mcg

A well-balanced diet is often enough to reach all of your recommended vitamins. Certain medical conditions, dietary restrictions, and medications can require that you take a vitamin K supplement in order to reach your goals. It's best to work with a health-care professional to determine how much you should take. Excess quantities can be as dangerous as not consuming enough. The key is always to give your body the optimal levels for optimal health.

REFERENCE:

Kovacs, Betty. "Vitamins and Calcium Supplements." MedicineNet.com. Mar. 26, 2009. <http://www.medicinenet.com/vitamins_and_calcium_supplements/article.htm>.
Last Editorial Review: 6/29/2010 3:46:13 PM



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