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Vitamins are complex organic substances that act as regulators and catalysts in the many chemical processes that occur within our bodies. Though they are required in small doses, vitamins are vital for healthy being.

Most vitamins cannot be generated by the body and must be inclusive in a healthy diet. A poor diet can lead to vitamin deficiencies that in the worst cases can trigger more serious diseases, this is common in developing countries. Hence the recommended daily amount or RDA of all vitamins should be strictly followed. Usually eating 5 daily portions of fruit and vegetables and some lean meat or oily fish is adequate. Vitamin supplements are another option, but should be taken with care and not substituted for intake through a healthy diet. The elderly, the sick, vegetarians, pregnant women and children should take special care in ensuring adequate intake of vitamins. Good health requires thirteen main vitamins that are separated into two groups. Fat-soluble vitamins need fat to be transported around the body and can be stored, whilst water-soluble vitamins are easily absorbed but cannot be stored.

Minerals are inorganic substances that play a part in nearly all-vital life processes. Formation of teeth/bone and nerve function are just some examples. The two sets of minerals required by the body are major minerals like sodium, potassium that are required in bigger amounts and trace minerals like iodine and fluoride that are needed in small doses.
Our complete diagram below presents the different vitamins and minerals, their roles in the body, a good food source where they can be found and the recommended daily amount (RDA).