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Essential Vitamins

Vitamins are a vital part of a healthy diet and are required for normal cell function, growth, and development. Don’t leave your health to chance. Get tested and take control of your well-being.

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STATISTICS

1 in 3

Nigerian children suffer from malnutrition

1 in 5

People living in Africa have inadequate levels of vitamin D

2B

People in the world have vitamin deficiency

Vitamins are organic substances present in small amounts in our food. Having too little of any particular vitamin may increase the risk of developing certain health issues.

Vitamins have different jobs to help keep the body working properly. Some vitamins help you resist infections and keep your nerves healthy, while others may help your body get energy from food or help your blood clot properly. By following dietary guidelines, you will get enough of most of these vitamins from food.

Symptoms of vitamin deficiency include: 

  • Brittle hair and nails
  • Mouth ulcers or cracks in the corners of the mouth
  • Bleeding gums
  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Poor night vision and white growths on the eyes
  • Scaly patches and dandruff
  • Hair loss
  • Red or white bumps on the skin
  • Poor wound healing (sores that last for a long time)
  • Skin colour changes (usually small, flat, light patches on your skin)
  • Restless leg syndrome
  • Fatigue, low energy
  • Loss of bone density

The 13 essential vitamins

Vitamin A

Vitamin D

Vitamin C

Vitamin K

Vitamin E

Vitamin B1 thiamine

Vitamin B2 riboflavin

Vitamin B3 niacin

Vitamin B5 pantothenic acid

Vitamin B6 pyridoxine

Vitamin B7 biotin

Vitamin B9 folate

Vitamin B12 cobalamin

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Benefits

Vitamin A plays an important role in the growth and development of cells. It also promotes healthy skin, hair, nails, gums, glands, bones and teeth, prevents night blindness and may help prevent lung cancer.

Sources of vitamin A

Salmon

Broccoli

Beef liver

Carrots

Leafy greens

Squash

Apricots

Mangos

Dairy

Cantelope

Fortified cereals

Benefits

This vitamin aids in the efficient absorption of Calcium and builds and maintains strong bones and teeth.

Sources of vitamin D

Beef liver

Eggs

Cheese

Cod liver oil

Mushrooms

Orange juice fortified with vit D

Vit D fortified dairy products, cereals and juices

Fatty fishes such as salmon, swordfish and tuna.

Benefits

Vitamin C is an antioxidant that promotes healthy gums and teeth. It also strengthens blood vessel walls, promotes wound healing and iron absorption, supports immunity and serves as a key antioxidant.

Sources of vitamin C

Citrus fruits and juice

Red and green peppers

Broccoli

Strawberries

Cantelope

Tomatoes and juice

Kiwi fruit

Baked potatoes

Brussel sprouts

Benefits

Your body needs Vitamin K for proper blood clotting and to promote bone health.

Sources of vitamin K

Spinach, kale and lettuce

Cheese

Soybeans

Blueberries

Eggs

Figs

Benefits

This vitamin helps in the production of red blood cells, protects fatty acids, maintains muscles, and serves as an important antioxidant.

Sources of vitamin E

Almonds

Peanuts

Avo

Swiss chard

Sunflower seeds

Soybeans

Butternut squash

Benefits

Vitamin B1 is important for maintaining a healthy metabolism. It also helps maintain normal digestion, appetite and proper nerve function.

 

Sources of vitamin B

Meat

Poultry

Fish

Organ meats

Whole grains

Eggs

Seeds

Nuts

Legumes

Fortified cereals

Breads

Pasta

Benefits

Vitamin B2 is essential for energy metabolism. It also aids adrenal function, supports normal vision and helps maintain healthy skin.

Sources of vitamin B

Meat

Poultry

Fish

Organ meats

Whole grains

Eggs

Seeds

Nuts

Legumes

Fortified cereals

Breads

Pasta

Benefits

Vitamin B3 helps maintain healthy nerve and skin cells. It is also used to metabolise energy and promote normal growth. In large doses, Vitamin B3 can also lower cholesterol.

Sources of vitamin B

Meat

Poultry

Fish

Organ meats

Whole grains

Eggs

Seeds

Nuts

Legumes

Fortified cereals

Breads

Pasta

Benefits

 Vitamin B5 aids energy metabolism and normalises blood sugar levels.

Sources of vitamin B

Meat

Poultry

Fish

Organ meats

Whole grains

Eggs

Seeds

Nuts

Legumes

Fortified cereals

Breads

Pasta

Benefits

Vitamin B6 promotes protein metabolism, carbohydrate metabolism and energy release. It also plays a role in proper nerve function and the synthesis of red blood cells.

Sources of vitamin B

Meat

Poultry

Fish

Organ meats

Whole grains

Eggs

Seeds

Nuts

Legumes

Fortified cereals

Breads

Pasta

Benefits

 Vitamin B7 helps break down carbohydrates and protein. It also helps with the production of hormones.

 

Sources of vitamin B

Meat

Poultry

Fish

Organ meats

Whole grains

Eggs

Seeds

Nuts

Legumes

Fortified cereals

Breads

Pasta

Benefits

Your body needs Vitamin B9 to make DNA, RNA, red blood cells, and synthesise certain amino acids. Vitamin B9 is also important for pregnant women as it helps prevent birth defects.

Sources of vitamin B

Meat

Poultry

Fish

Organ meats

Whole grains

Eggs

Seeds

Nuts

Legumes

Fortified cereals

Breads

Pasta

Benefits

Vitamin B12 is essential for metabolism, and it helps with the production of red blood cells. It also helps keep nerve and blood cells healthy and also helps make DNA.

Sources of vitamin B

Meat

Poultry

Fish

Organ meats

Whole grains

Eggs

Seeds

Nuts

Legumes

Fortified cereals

Breads

Pasta

Frequently Asked Questions

If you are still unsure about this test, here are some questions that we usually get asked.

Still need answers?

What happens if you don't get enough of your essential vitamins?

Vitamin deficiencies manifest in several different ways. These include blood, heart, brain, nerves, bone and skin diseases

Is it good to take a multivitamin every day?

There is still limited evidence that a daily cocktail of essential vitamins and minerals actually delivers what you expect. It is better to consume nutrient-packed foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy.

Benefits

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