The Best Vitamins For Brain

 

Health is the most important thing in life. This includes health of our brain – one of the vital organs in our body that is crucial for our optimal daily performance. Vitamins for brain are necessary to maintain a healthy brain.

 

What to do if you notice your brain is not functioning properly? Maybe the problem hides in your diet. Diet of an average person that consists mostly of precessed foods, does not meet daily requirements for the vitamins that body needs. One of the studies even showed that 40 – 60 percent of adults are not getting enough vitamins trough their diet.

   

 

Suboptimal brain functioning from vitamin deficiency is usually subtle and goes undetected for a long time. Changes in a diet can improve the problem, but often just a healthy diet is not enough to supply the brain with all the vitamins it needs. In this case adding supplements for brain is an option that can help to maintain brain healthy, prevent possible damage caused by free radicals or stress and improve memory and cognitive performance.

 

Some of the best vitamins for brain, that can help preserve and improve your intellectual and emotional health are:

  

1. B Vitamins are especially important in preserving aging brains, protecting against memory loss and brain diseases. The most important vitamins for brain from this group are vitamins B6, B12 and B9 (Folic Acid). They protect neurons in brain, improve memory, help in brain development and are very important for people under stress. B vitamins can be found in vegetables such as spinach and other dark leafy green vegetables, broccoli, asparagus, black beans, soybeans, fruits such as strawberries, melons, oranges, meat, fish, cereals, algae such as Spirulina and are often taken as supplements.


  

·        Folic acid improves memory, alertness, cognition and protects brain from excessive amino acid homocystein, that can damage brain cells. Low levels of folic acid can increase risk of depression. It is found in spinach, broccoli, bananas, strawberries, whole wheat bread, asparagus, peas and in supplements. 

·        Vitamin B12 helps maintain health of nerve cells, increases mental alertness, protects against some mental problems such as depression, prevents senility, memory loss and enhances brain power.  

·        Vitamin B6 helps to improve memory.

 

2. Antioxidants protect brain tissue from free radicals that can damage brain structures. Vitamins C and E are one of the most important antioxidants for brain. The best foods rich in antioxidants are prunes, blueberries and other berries, garlic, raisins and spinach. You can also find them in green tea, nuts, seeds and in supplements. Multivitamins that include vitamins C, B complex and E are one of popular choices.

 

·        Vitamin E is an antioxidant that protects brain and nerve cells against damage caused by free radicals. It is a powerful vitamin that can protect against Alzheimer’s disease delay its progress. If boosts blood circulation that influences good brain functioning.You can find it in cereals, vegetable oils, vegetables, nuts, grains and different supplements. 

·        Vitamin Cis another antioxidant that protects against free radicals that can damage brain cells. You can find it in fruits such as lemons, oranges, grapefruits, berries or kiwi, vegetables such as legumes, chili and in supplements.

 

 clip image002 The Best Vitamins For Brain

  

 

3. Other vitamins for brain that improve its functioning and vitality are:

 

·        Vitamin D protects pathways in the brain and improves memory. One of the studies also showed that there is a link between vitamin D deficiency and depression in older people. The best way to receive daily dose of vitamin D is by exposure to the sunlight and by taking supplements.

·        Vitamin A enhances the ability to learn by improving communication between brain cells in the hippocampus- part of the brain associated with memory and learning. It is also needed in development of the nervous system in an embryo. You can find it in carrots, spinach, egg yolks, cantaloupe, liver and in supplements. 

 

Brain also requires other nutrients besides vitamins. Omega-3 fatty acids are one of the essential nutrients for brain, found in fish, walnuts, flax seed oil and are often taken as supplements. They protect brain cells from inflammation, improve memory, moodiness, brain functions and even influence IQ in children.

 

These findings show that you have to eat right for the optimal brain performance. Look into your diet to find out if you consume enough of the vitamins for brain and omega-3 fatty acids. If your diet consists mostly of processed foods like white flour, sweets and pre-prepared meals, there is a good chance that you do not get all the nutrients you need. In this case try to include more fruits, vegetables and fish (at least 2-3 times per week) on your menu or consider taking supplements for brain to keep it healthy and fit for a long time. 

 

 The Best Vitamins For Brain

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Memory Improvement Tips

Improving the memory is one aspect that millions of people want. This is because it is not a funny business when you keep forgetting all the tiny details.

In a bid to correct this problem, there are several scientific memory improvement tips that you could implement once you realise that you have challenges remembering.

The most common memory improvement tips include:

  • The use of omega 3 fatty oils: According to scientific research, it was noted that the intake of these oils is prone to improve your memory. This is because the omega 3 fatty oils repair the degraded brain cells thus improving your memory capability. If you are wondering where you could get the omega 3 fatty oils, all you have to do is to visit a qualified doctor and they will be in a position to recommend which product(s) to use.
  • Good Balanced diet food: Intake of a balanced diet is another tip that you could implement so as to improve your memory. That is, adequate intake of healthy carbohydrates, fatty oils, proteins, fruits and vegetables. When maintaining a healthy balanced diet, you may have to change your lifestyle habits if you consume a lot of processed foods.
  • Get enough sleep: Sleep is one of the oldest memory improvement tips that have been known since the beginning of time. The less sleep hours that we get, the less our memory will be active. Therefore, sleep is essential so as to ensure that our brain power is up.
  • Regular exercise: Exercise is the key to a lot of issues that we could be having in our lives. The minute we take time to do a 30 minutes workout, we refresh our brains from the usual. That is by allowing for more oxygen to flow to our brains thus keeping us active.
  • Keep away from stress: In a research that was conducted, it was found out that stress has been known to destroy brain cells. Thus, when we keep away from stress we can be sure that our concentration and brain activity have been improved.
  • Other memory improvement tips include, indulging in fun activities such as brain games, going out with friends and solving puzzles.

Therefore, if you are encountering challenges with your memory, it is recommended to practice some or all of the stated memory improvement tips. However, if you experience severe memory loss, it is advisable to immediately seek the help of a qualified doctor.

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Harmful Brain Supplements & Other Supplements

Brain supplements and vitamins for brain are mostly good for your health and well being. Omega-3 fatty acids are one of the most commonly recommended brain supplements that are also great for your heart and circulatory system, B vitamins are great for nervous people and heart diseases, while supplements such as Ginkgo Biloba help to improve memory and concentration.

Black List of Harmful Supplements

But did you ever wonder if all supplements are good for you? There are also some blacklisted supplements, that can cause serious health complications. Here is a short list of 12 most dangerous supplements that you should avoid:

NamePurpurted UsedDangersOther
AconiteJoint pain, wounds, gout, inflammationToxicity, nausea, vomiting, low blood pressure,resporatory-system paralysis, heart-rhythm disorders, death.Unsafe. This supplement is the most common cause of severe hearbal poisoning in Hong Kong.
Bitter OrangeWeight loss, nasal congestion, allergiesFainting, heart-rhythm disorders, heart attack, stroke, deathContains synephrine (similar to ephedrine) banned by the FDA in 2004. Higher risks than with herbs containing caffeine.
ChaparralColds, weight loss, infections, inflammation, cancer, detoxificationLiver damage, kidney problemsFDA advises not to take this supplement
Colloidal SilveFungal and other infections, Lyme disease, rosacea, psoriasis, food poisoning, chronic fatigue syndrome, HIV/AIDSBluish skin, mucous membrane discoloration, neurological problems, kidney damageFDA warning about the risk of discoloration since 2009
ColtsfootCough, sore throat, laryngitis, bronchitis, asthmaLiver damage, cancer
ComfreyCough, heavy menstrual periods, chest pain, cancerLiver damage, cancerFDA advised manufactures to remove this product from market in 2001
Country MallowNasal congestion, allergies, asthma, weight loss, bronchitisHeart attack, heart arrhytmia, stroke, deathDanger linked to ephedrine alkaloids banned by the FDA in 2004
GermaniumPain, infections, glaucoma, liver problems, arthritis, osteoporosis, heart disease, HIV/AIDS, cancerKidney damage, deathFDA warned in 1993 that this supplement is linked to serious adverse events
Greater CelandineUpset stomach, irritable bowel syndrome, liver disorders, detoxification, cancerLiver damage
KavaAnxietyLiver damageFDA is warning consumers since 2002. This supplement is banned in Germany, Canada, Switzerland.
LobeliaCough, bronchitis, asthma, smoking cessationToxic, overdose causes fast heartbeat, very low blood pressure, coma, deathFDA warned in 1993 that this supplement is linked to serious adverse events
YohimbeDepression, aphrodisiac, chest pain, diabetic complications, erectile dysfunctionCan cause high blood pressure, rapid heart rate, high doses can cause severe low blood pressure, heart problems, deathContains prescription drug yohimbine. The FDA warned of its serious adverse events in 1993

Source: Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, 2010

This list demonstrates that not all supplements available on the market are safe. Some are even extremely harmful. So do a quick research before buying brain supplements.

Here are also some quick facts provided by the Food and Drug Administration:

1500 U.S. supplement manufacturersSince 2008 more than 170 supplements have been found to contain hidden drugs or steroidsOnly 33% of supplements in Naturals Medicine Comprehensive Database have scientific evidence of their efficacy that they are likely safe

Source: Food and Drug Administration, 2010

Tips When Buying Brain Supplements and Vitamins for Brain

You should also avoid buying brain supplements and vitamins for brain from suspicious websites and sellers with bad reputation. Specially on the Internet there are a lot of sellers that offer wide variety of unchecked brain supplements that can do you more harm than good. You can’t be sure of their content – they may contain some good ingredients but they may also contain harmful chemicals that can have a negative influence on your health.

So make sure that you check a seller, brain supplements and vitamins for brain, especially when buying them online. You should also follow the instructions and avoid consuming large doses of brain supplements and vitamins for brain than it is recommended. In small dosages they have beneficial effects for your health, but as everything else, they can have some negative side effects if consumed in large dosages. Remember: too much is bad.

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Brain Supplements & Vitamins For Brain – How Effective Are They?

Supplements’ Balloon Race

Are you taking supplements for brain & vitamins for brain in hope you are doing something good for your health? Did you ever ask yourself how effective these supplements really are? This simple yet very informative infographic, supported by over 1500 scientific studies from PubMed (US National Library of Medicine) and Cochrane.org, ranges some of the most popular supplements by their effectiveness.

Higher the supplement is, the greater evidence exists for its effectiveness (for the  listed conditions). Many supplements (including Omega-3 fatty acids and B vitamins) affect different types of health conditions, so they appear in multiple bubbles. Size of the bubbles illustrates popularity of the supplements. With new research new supplements emerge, that show promising results (you will find them in orange bubbles).

You can also check the interactive version of the supplements infographic that allows you to filter the supplements by their function. The amazing thing about this visualization is, that it is supported by Google Document, which is being updated when the new research come out, so it is depicting the latest results of different studies.

The infographic focuses on different types of supplements that affect different types of health conditions, including supplements for brain. It provides a good overview over their overall effects and will help you make an informed decision when buying supplements for brain.

snake oil 502913ef22085 w587 Brain Supplements & Vitamins For Brain   How Effective Are They?

Explore more infographics like this one on the web’s largest information design community – Visually.

 

In the next post you can read more about harmful brain supplements and other supplements that you better avoid.

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Check Out Vitamins For Brain E-Store

In our Amazon Vitamins For Brain E-Store you can find great deals on:

  • vitamins for brain
  • brain supplements
  • books, magazines and DVDs that will help you keep your brain healthy and active.

Visit our e-store and give your brain a boost with quality supplements & vitamins for brain.

 

If you are taking medication, have allergies or other health conditions that could influence the effects of dietary supplements, please consult your doctor before taking supplements and vitamins for brain.

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Supplements for Brain: Omega-3 Fatty Acids Benefits – Video

Omega-3 fatty acids, among other found in fish oil, are one of the best supplements for brain, that are not only beneficial for brain functions, but can also:

  • help to maintain healthy heart
  • joint function and
  • can even help with weight loss.

Great for weight loss, pregnant women and people with neurological problems

Study has shown that people who consume enough of fish oil burn fat at a higher rate and loose weight quicker. Fish oil helps to reduce belly fat that causes inflammation and thus prevents damage to the brain and circulatory system. Omega-3 fats are also very beneficial for pregnant women and brain development of fetus. They help to slow down inflammation in the brain that causes Alzheimer’s disease and are useful in neurology, for people with neck and back problems.

Fish or Omega-3 supplements for brain?

Research show that Japanese men that eat fish, full of healthy omega-3 fats, every day, have far less heart disease than other men. Japanese eat around 3 ounces of fish per day, that provides around 1300 milligrams of Omega-3 fats. That is much more than an average western person consumes, so taking the Omega-3 supplements, is a good idea. An alternative is eating fish, but that requires some caution, since large fish often contain heavy metals that are bad for our health. That is why pregnant women and children are better of taking Omega-3 supplements for brain, heart and to reduce inflammation, where the toxins are removed.

Watch the following video where experts explain the benefits of Omega-3 fats.

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Brain Supplements – Do You Really Need Them?

Why We Should Take Supplements For Brain?

Brain functions start to decline when we are in our twenties or thirties. By that time, we may have difficulty remembering parts of your childhood or even start to see more serious brain lapses. Later in our lives we can find ourselves struggling to remember simple words or names of the people we know well.

brain supplements Brain Supplements   Do You Really Need Them?

Why Does This Happen?

There are many reasons why the brain functions start to decline. Some of them are lack of oxygen, stress, toxicity of the environment, food and cosmetics that are full of chemicals, that overburden our bodies. By using supplements for brain, you can begin to bring some of the vitality back to your brain and increase your brain power, efficiency and concentration.

What Supplements For Brain To Take?

Besides being active and doing brain exercises, the important factor for maintaining healthy and clear mind is eating right and taking the right supplements for brain to supplement your diet. Not all supplements for brain have been proven to work, so before deciding which to take, consult with your doctor and research the market.

Clinical studies are a good source of credible information about the products that work and can help you improve your memory, concentration, mental clarity, improve your mood, restore mental energy and protect your brain cells from the damage caused by the free radicals.

One of the most commonly recommended supplements for brain are Omega-3 fatty acids and B vitamins. Besides that you can find different effective supplements such as Ginkgo Biloba, Co Q10 and other more or less natural substances, that can improve your mental performance.

In this times that we live in, it is important to take supplements for brain, that also improve overall health. They can help to protect us and fight the damage done by the stressful everyday life and polluted environment that we live in.

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Combine Vitamins For Brain With Memory Exercises

 

Besides taking vitamins for brain and supplements for brain, you can improve your memory, concentration and other brain functions by solving puzzles, crosswords, Sudoku and playing different games such as memory, chess, card games and even action games that can keep your brain sharp.

Puzzle by mypuzzle.org

Some studies have shown that playing games which include problem solving and other skills can improve different brain functions including memory, attention, thinking speed and mental flexibility. There are also other activities that stimulate different areas and functions of brain:

- activities such as chess and crosswords that require some planning, stimulate the frontal lobe of the brain

- activities such as learning a new language and painting coordinate multiple brain regions

- activities such as ballroom dancing and basketball train short range spatial skills. And all physical exercise promote brain-derived neutrophic factor (BDNF- protein in the brain that is important for a long-term memory and promotes growth of new neurons and synapses in the brain).

Brain training does not need to be a boring task, so take a break and have fun playing games that will improve your brain functions.

 

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Foods Rich in Nutrients and Vitamins for Memory – Video

 

Healthy diet is important for brain and memory. Watch the following short video where nutricionist explains the importance of foods rich in nutrients, vitamins for brain and memory improvement.

First of all it is important to keep your cholesterol and blood pressure under control, get enough sleep, stay away from cigarettes, exercise regulary, challenge and also relax your brain. It is also good to know that the foods that are good for your heart are also good for your brain and memory.

Certain foods are more benefitial for brain than others. Research shows the importance of:

  • Fish high in Omega-3 fatty acids (especially EPA and DHA) such as wild salmon – 1 serving of fish per week is better than nothing, but you should try to eat at least 3 servings of fish each week, where the serving size is equal to at least the size of the palm of your hand. Fish supplements are a nice alternative to actual fish.
  • Berries: all berries are rich in anthocyanins and flavonoids, nutrients that protect you from brain cell degeneration. Research show that a cup of blueberries per day can increase your memory capacity and even reverse memory loss.
  • Leafy greens are loaded with folic acid that helps to slow down memory decline. Eat at least one cup a day.

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Vitamins For Brain: Vitamin D

 

 

Vitamin D  is one of the valuable vitamins for brain and a  fat-soluble vitamins that constitutes two major forms: vitamin D2 or ergocalciferol and vitamin D3 or cholecalciferol. Vitamin D2 is synthesised by plants and is sometimes considered vegetarian source of vitamin D, whilst vitamin D3 is synthesised by the body. Vitamin D is naturally present in a number of food sources and dietary supplements, and is also manufactured with the aid of sun exposure. It is produced within the body when ultraviolet-B or UVB rays from sunlight reaches the skin. The liver and the kidney eventually help to convert vitamin D to an active hormone form.

Vitamin D2 Vitamins For Brain: Vitamin D

Functions of Vitamin D

Vitamin D plays several key roles in the maintenance of organ systems. For example:

  • Vitamin D helps regulate calcium concentrations in the blood. Since it works more like a hormone, its active form, calcitriol acts with the parathyroid hormone or PTH. If the calcium level is low, this would trigger the secretion of PTH, which would stimulate the conversion of vitamin D to calcitriol. Calcitriol would then act to increase calcium absorption in the intestines, calcium resorption in the kidneys and stimulate calcium release from the bones.
  • Vitamin D helps maintain blood phosphorus levels. Low levels of vitamin D can result to an overactive parathyroid gland. Also with inadequate phosphorus in the body, bones cannot undergo normal mineralisation.
  • It is also said that vitamin D benefits the immune system since the T-cells or immune cells have receptors for vitamin D. It acts by boosting phagocytosis, the bodily functions to combat tumours, modulate neuromuscular and immune functions and reduce inflammation.
  • Vitamin D is also responsible for maintaining normal cell growth and function. It may be an important element to the prevention and treatment of cancer. It has also been suggested that vitamin D plays a role in regulating the growth and function of brain cells.
  • Research studies suggest that vitamin D, because of its anti-inflammatory effect, plays a role in providing protection against osteoporosis, hypertension, cancer, type 1 diabetes, psoriasis and numerous autoimmune diseases.

Besides that, vitamin D may play a role in prevention or tratment of the following health conditions:

  • Asthma (severe childhood)
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Bladder cancer
  • Breast cancer
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Colon cancer
  • Congestive heart failure
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Depression
  • Epilepsy
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Heart attack
  • Hypertension
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Insulin resistance
  • Kidney disease
  • Leprosy
  • Liver disease
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Myofascial pain syndrome
  • Osteoporosis
  • Periodontal disease
  • Preeclampsia
  • Psoriasis
  • Rectal cancer
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Senile dementia
  • Stroke
  • Tinnitus
  • Tuberculosis
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Ulcerative colitis

Deficiency Conditions

There may be certain underlying causes of vitamin D deficiency. It can result from:

  • Inadequate vitamin D intake together with inadequate sun exposure
  • Certain disorders that compromise vitamin D absorption
  • Conditions that can impair the conversion of vitamin D metabolites such as kidney or liver diseases or hereditary disorders.

Insufficient vitamin D intake can have serious effects on the bones, which can make them thin, brittle or deformed. Vitamin D deficiency often results in conditions like:

  • Rickets which is common in children and is characterised by delayed growth and deformity of long bones.
  • Osteomalacia, which occurs in adults and results in thinning of the bones. Signs of proximal weakness and bone fragility are familiar characteristics.
  • Osteoporosis which is a condition wherein the bone mineral density is reduced and bone fragility is increased.

Lack of vitamin D may also be linked to increased susceptibility of several chronic diseases like high blood pressure, cancer, tuberculosis, periodontal disease, multiple sclerosis, chronic pain, schisophrenia, depression, affective disorders, peripheral arterial disease and a number of autoimmune diseases such as type-1 diabetes.

Deficiency Symptoms in Adults and Infants

Signs of vitamin D deficiency includes muscle aches, myopathy or muscle weakness and bone pain. These symptoms can occur at any age. Pregnant mothers who have vitamin D deficiency can also cause fetal deficiency.

In younger infants, rickets can produce a condition called craniotabes or softening of the skull. In older babies, rickets can impede or delay sitting and crawling and the closure of the fontanels; bossing of the infants’ skull and presence of costochondral thickening or what is referred to as ‘rachitic rosary’. Children with rickets aged 1-4 years old experience epiphyseal cartilage enlargements on the long bones and delayed walking. Older children and adolescents can experience pain upon walking and in worst cases it can result in ‘bowlegs’ or ‘knock-knees’.

Tetany that is caused by hypocalcemia may go along with vitamin D deficiency in infants and adults. This condition can lead to symptoms such as loss of feeling in the lip or tongue areas and the fingers, facial spasms, and at worst, seizures.

Recommended Daily Dose of Vitamin D

Doses or intake of vitamin D is determined according to age groups. These amounts are vital to maintain normal growth and bone health and also normal calcium metabolism in the body. The adequate intakes or AIs for vitamin D indicated are based on the supposition that the vitamin D is not synthesized by sunlight exposure.

From birth to age 13, the recommended AI for children is 5 mcg or 200 IU; for both males and females aged 14-50 years old, 5 mcg or 200 IU is needed; for both males and females aged 51-70 years of age, 10 mcg or 400 IU is required; both males and females reaching the age of 71 and up require 15 mcg or 600 IU of vitamin D. Pregnant and lactating mothers need 5 mcg or 200 IU of the vitamin.

Vitamin D Sources 300x300 Vitamins For Brain: Vitamin D

 

Vitamin D Food Sources

Only a few food sources contain vitamin D. Best sources of vitamin D are fish meat and fish liver oils. There are also small amounts of vitamin D, in the form of vitamin D3, found in dairy products like cheese and egg as well as beef and liver. Some types of mushrooms also contain varying amounts of vitamin D2.

Common sources of vitamin D include the following:

  • Cod liver oil
  • Fish like salmon, mackerel, tuna, sardines
  • Milk including non-fat, reduced fat, whole or vitamin D fortified
  • Margarine
  • Cereals
  • Egg
  • Beef liver
  • Swiss cheese
  • Fortified orange juice
  • Fortified rice or soy beverage

The Best Food Sources of Vitamin D

FoodServing SizeAmount of Vitamin (IU)Daily Value [%]Calories
Salmon, chinook, baked/broiled4 oz-wt411.00102.8261.9
Sardines3.25 oz can250.2462.6191.4
Shrimp, steamed/boiled4 oz-wt162.3940.6112.3
Cow's milk, 2%1 cup97.6024.4121.2
Cod, baked/broiled4 oz-wt63.5015.9119.1
Shiitake Mushrooms, raw1 cup29.007.249.3
Egg, whole, boiled1 egg22.885.768.2

Source: www.whfoods.org

The Need for Increased Amounts

Since obtaining sufficient amounts of vitamin D in the diet can be quite difficult, many people now consume vitamin D fortified foods in order to maintain a healthy dose of the vitamin. There are some groups however who need increased amounts of vitamin D:

  • Breastfed infants because vitamin D cannot be supplied by breast milk alone
  • Older people due to the fact that synthesis of vitamin D decreases with age and the ability of the kidney to convert vitamin D diminishes.
  • People with limited sun exposure especially those living in northern latitudes, those wearing robes or head covers or those with occupations that prevent them from having sun exposure.
  • People with dark skin as more skin pigments like melanin reduces the ability of the skin to produce vitamin D.
  • People with fat malabsorption conditions such as Crohn’s disease, cystic fibrosis, liver and celiac disease or patients who have undergone surgical removal of any part of the stomach or intestine.
  • People who are obese. An increased amount of subcutaneous fat can snatch more of the vitamin D and somehow alter its release in the circulation.

Interaction of Vitamin D with Prescribed Drugs

Vitamin D supplements have the tendency to react with certain types of prescription medications. These include the following:

  • Steroids or corticosteroid medications like prednisone which can cause decreased calcium absorption and also damage the vitamin D metabolism process.
  • Weight-loss medications such as orlistat and cholesterol-lowering drugs like cholestyramine also decrease the absorption of vitamin D and other fat-soluble vitamins.
  • Phenobarbital and phenytoin increases vitamin D metabolism and decreases calcium absorption.

Vitamins Australia

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Vitamins For Brain: Vitamin A

 

Vitamin A is one of the vitamins for brain that are not only beneficial for healthy brain but also have many other positive effects on overall health. Vitamin A is known for enhancing learning abilities and is needed for a proper development of nervous system in a growing embryo. It is also a great antioxidant that protects against the damage done by the free radicals.

Researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, California have established a link between vitamin A and learning abilities. They have discovered that Vitamin A enhances learning abilities by improving communication between brain cells in the hippocampus- region of the brain associated with learning and memory.

Besides that, vitamin A has other beneficial effects on our health. It is nutrient important for
good vision and prevention of eye problems such as dry eyes, it promotes healthy immune system, is important for cell growth and development, maintains healthy and beautiful skin by helping with health conditions such as acne and atopic dermatitis, helps with ear infections and varicose veins, plays a role in bone metabolism and gene transciption.

You can find it in different food sources such as orange colored vegetables, liver, spinach and orange colored fruits like apricots, mango, papaya, peaches and other.

Orange Fruits and Vegetables 300x193 Vitamins For Brain: Vitamin A

The Best Food Sources of Vitamin A

FoodServing SizeAmount of Vitamin (IU*)Daily Value (DV) [%]Calories
Carrots - raw1 cup3431768653
Liver - calf, broiled4 ounces30485610187
Spinach - broiled1 cup1886637742
Sweet potato - baked1 piece1310826295
Kale - broiled1 cup962019236
Turnip - cooked1 cup791715829
Winter squash - baked1 cup729214680
Collard greens - broiled1 cup594511949
Swiss chard - boiled1 cup549311035
Peppers, red - raw1 cup524410525
Cantaloupe1 cup515810356
Mustard greens 1 cup42438521
Lettuce2 cups29125816
Broccoli - steamed1 cup22814644
Cayenne pepper - dried2 tsp14702911
Tomato1 cup11222238
Brussel sprouts - broiled1 cup11222261
Asparagus - broiled1 cup9701943
Green peas - broiled1 cup95519134
Apricots1 piece 9141817

* International units (IU) ;  Source: www.whfoods.org

Recommendations for vitamin A are provided in the Dietary Reference Intakes developed by the Institute of Medicine. Vitamin A deficiency affects around one third of childen under the age of five around a world and can couse blindness, night blindness and other eye problems like dry eyes, impaired immunity, increased risk of ear and urinary tract  infections and other problems. Sufficient amount of vitamin A is especially for pregnant and breatfeeding women for normal development of a child.

On the other hand excess amount of vitamin A can also cause problems such as birth defects, nausea, irritability, vomiting, blurry vision, headaches, anorexia, hair loss, muscle pain and weakness and dry skin. In chronic cases it causes insomnia, fatigue, bone fractures, anemia, fever, diarrhea and drying of mucous membranes. Excess vitamin A toxidity has a significant efects on developing fetuses.

To consume the right daily dosage of vitamin A follow the recommendations listed below to keep your optimal health.

Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA) of Vitamin A

AgeChildren
AI - UL [μg/day]
Females
AI - UL [μg/day]
Males
AI - UL [μg/day]
Pregnancy
AI - UL [μg/day]
Lactation
AI - UL [μg/day]
0-6 months400 - 600
7-12 months500 - 600
1-3 years300 - 600
4-8 years400 - 900
9-13 years600 - 1700600 -1700
14-18 years700 -2800900 - 2800750 - 28001200 -2800
19+ years700 - 3000900 - 3000770 - 3001300 -3000

*Adequate Intake – Upper Limit ;  Source: www.wikipedia.org

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