While most people know that Vitamin A is needed for the body’s good health, they do not realize what happens when the supplement is taken in excess. Too much Vitamin A can actually cause liver damage, damage to the nervous system, yellow skin, hair loss, and bone damage. In pregnant women, excess Vitamin A can cause birth defects to the child.
If you take it in the correct amounts, Vitamin A is not only healthy, but is also known to be essential to most bodily functions. The best way to get enough Vitamin A is through the foods you eat. This important vitamin can be found naturally in eggs, whole milk, liver, and in fruits and vegetables that are brightly colored.
Vitamin A is absolutely essential because when it is not received by the body in adequate proportions, it can lead to immunity problems and infections. Luckily, this is rather uncommon in developed countries, and usually is only problematic with those who are on strict diets or maintain a high alcohol intake.
Vitamin B is actually a group of four vitamins, vitamin B-1 also called thiamine, vitamin B-2 also called riboflavin, vitamin B-6 also called pyridoxine, and vitamin B-12 also called cobalamin. Together, these four vitamins make the B vitamin group.
Most individuals in developed countries get plenty of B vitamins; however vegetarians sometimes have a deficiency due to their being found primarily in animals. Some medications also affect the way B vitamins are absorbed into the body and can cause a deficiency. A vitamin B deficiency is usually characterized by skin rashes, nerve problems, and anemia.
Although a B vitamin overdose is almost unheard of, when it does occur symptoms include severe burning of any part of the body, itching, or numbness. As with all supplements, it is best to take vitamin B only as recommended.
Ascorbic Acid, which is another name for Vitamin C, is essential for helping the body absorb iron. When too much Vitamin C is taken, it can cause diarrhea and stomach pain. This is important to keep in mind when someone suggests taking a Vitamin C overload to help cure a cold!
Vitamin C is has been commonly associated with the immune system. What most people do not realize, however, is that there is a whole host of potential problems that can come from a deficiency of Vitamin C. Lesser known problems stemming from a lack of Vitamin C include nosebleeds, general weakness and lassitude, swollen gums, and scurvy.
Vitamin C is found naturally in most fruits and vegetables, and is found in larger portions in raspberries, cantaloupe, broccoli, strawberries, and cabbage. Surprisingly, Vitamin C can also be found in liver. When taken in the form of supplements, Vitamin C is best consumed in liquid form, as the pill form is not always absorbed properly by the body.
There are actually two different forms of vitamin D. There is one form that is found in vegetables, and another form found in animals. The form of Vitamin D found in vegetables is called ergocalciferol, while the alternative form is called cholecalciferol. This is the form that is metabolized by the body whenever we expose it to sunlight.
Vitamin D is an essential hormone in the body, and deficiencies are usually found in people who have milk allergies, lactose intolerance, or those who are strict vegetarians. When not enough Vitamin D is taken into the body, it can cause rickets and osteomalacia, which are both diseases that affect the bone structure.
When too much Vitamin D is consumed, however, it can cause an over- absorption of calcium. This can result in calcification, urinary stones, and problems with the central nervous system. Problems with the central muscle system can show up as well. Vitamin D should be taken only as recommended by your doctor.
Vitamin E is found in wheat germ, spinach, olives, nuts, seeds, and leafy greens. Eating foods that are rich in Vitamin E can help to prevent Alzheimer’s disease and prostate cancer, as well as helping to guard against the UV rays of the sun.
Although it is exceptionally rare for people to develop a Vitamin E deficiency, it’s still important to make sure that the recommended daily dose is taken. A Vitamin E deficiency has been known to cause severe problems with the nervous system.
Too much Vitamin E can cause fatigue, weakness, flu-like symptoms, abdominal pain, internal bleeding, and headaches. These symptoms will increase in severity if the overdose is continued over a period of time.