Vitamin and Mineral Sources
WebMD Medical Reference
Kathleen Zelman, MPH, RD/LD
(Also known as):
||Cod liver oil, dairy products, sweet potatoes, carrots, leafy vegetables, and fortified foods such as breakfast cereals.
||Needed for good eyesight and normal functioning of the immune system.|
||Enriched, fortified, or whole-grain products, such as bread, pasta, and cereals.
||Helps the body process carbohydrates.|
||Organ meats, breads, fortified cereals, almonds, asparagus, cooked eggs, dark meat chicken, and cooked beef.
||Used in many body processes, such as converting food into energy. It also participates in the metabolism of many drugs and helps in the production of red blood cells.|
||Light-meat chicken, tuna, salmon, turkey, enriched flour, peanuts, and fortified cereals.
||Aids in digestion and converting food into energy. Also used by the body to help make cholesterol.|
||Fortified cereals, fortified soy-based meat substitutes, baked potatoes with skin, bananas, light-meat chicken and turkey, eggs, and spinach.
||Vital for a healthy nervous system. Helps the body break down proteins. Helps the body break down stored sugar.|
|B-12||Beef, clams, mussels, crabs, salmon, poultry, soybeans, and fortified foods.
||Needed for creating red blood cells.|
|C (Ascorbic acid)
||Citrus fruits, red berries, tomatoes, potatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, red and green bell peppers, cabbage, and spinach.
||Helps promote a healthy immune system and is required to help make collagen, which holds cells together. It is also required for making chemical messengers in the brain.|
|D||Fortified milk, cheese, and cereals; egg yolks; salmon; and sunlight.
||Needed to process calcium and maintain bone health.|
||Leafy green vegetables, almonds, hazelnuts, and vegetable oils like sunflower, canola, and soybean.
||Functions as an antioxidant.|
|Folate (Folic acid)
||Fortified cereals and grain products; lima, lentil, and garbanzo beans; and dark leafy vegetables.
||Vital for cell development, prevents birth defects, promotes heart health, and helps red blood cells form.|
|K||Leafy green vegetables like parsley, chard, and kale; olive, canola, and soybean oils; and broccoli.
||Helps clot blood and maintains bone health.|
||Dairy products, broccoli, dark leafy greens like spinach and rhubarb, and fortified products, such as orange juice, soy milk, and tofu.
||Helps build and maintain strong bones and teeth.|
||Some cereals, beef, turkey, fish, beer, broccoli, and grape juice.
||Helps maintain normal blood sugar (glucose) levels.|
||Organ meats, oysters, clams, crabs, cashews, sunflower seeds, wheat bran cereals, whole-grain products, and cocoa products.
||Aids in metabolism of iron and red cell formation. Helps in the production of energy for cells. |
||Fluorinated water, teas, marine fish, and some dental products.
||Prevents dental cavities and stimulates new bone formation.|
||Processed foods and iodized salt.||Works to make thyroid hormones.|
||Leafy green vegetables, beans, shellfish, red meat, poultry, soy foods, and some fortified foods.
||Needed to transport oxygen to all parts of the body via the red blood cells.|
|Magnesium||Whole-grain products, leafy green vegetables, almonds, peanuts, hazelnuts, lima beans, black-eyed peas, avocados, bananas, kiwifruit, shrimp, and chocolate.||Helps muscles and nerves function properly, steadies heart rhythm, maintains bone strength, and helps the body create energy and make proteins.|
|Manganese||Pecans, almonds, legumes, green and black tea, whole grains, and pineapple juice.||Involved in bone formation and wound healing, metabolism of proteins, cholesterol, and carbohydrates. It is also an antioxidant.|
|Molybdenum||Legumes, grain products, and nuts.||Plays a role in processing proteins and other substances.|
|Phosphorus||Dairy products, beef, chicken, halibut, salmon, and whole-wheat breads.||Helps cells function normally and help the body make energy. Helps red blood cells deliver oxygen. Important in the formation of bone. |
|Potassium||Broccoli, potatoes (with the skins on), prune juice, orange juice, leafy green vegetables, bananas, raisins, and tomatoes.||Aids in nervous system and muscle function. Also helps maintain a healthy balance of water in the blood and body tissues.|
|Selenium||Organ meats, shrimp, crabs, salmon, halibut, and Brazil nuts.||Helps protect cells from damage and regulates thyroid hormone action and other processes.|
|Zinc||Red meat, fortified cereals, oysters, almonds, peanuts, chickpeas, soy foods, and dairy products.||Vital to many internal processes and supports immune function, reproduction, and the nervous system.|
Published Oct. 1, 2004.
SOURCES: Institute of Medicine. USDA Food and Nutrition Information Center. Harvard School of Public Health. Nemours Foundation.
©2004 WebMD Inc. All rights reserved.
Last Editorial Review: 10/1/2004 8:42:23 PM