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All Vitamins & Minerals

by Appreciate Goods
All Vitamins & Minerals

We need the right combination of nutrients to support the proper functioning of our bodies. And it goes beyond the physical benefits: do you know that having the adequate amount of certain vitamins and minerals can also affect our mood, emotional and mental health?

But which vitamins and minerals do you really need and how do they work? Here is a great guide that we’ve put together for you. 

Take note: This is a very long page and if you hate scrolling, we strongly suggest that you use the quick links below:

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VITAMINS

Vitamin A

(all of our links are in orange color. If you’re interested to find out more, click on any orange link to read the full article)

Classification: fat-soluble

Vitamin A Health benefits:

  • Crucial for good vision.
  • Promotes healthy bone formation.
  • Essential in cell division and growth.
  • Supports reproduction and proper development of embryo and fetus.
  • Improves skin health and hastens wound healing.
  • Supports immune system function.

Vitamin A Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 400 mcg
  • Babies, 7 to 12 months: 500 mcg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 300 mcg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 400 mcg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 600 mcg
  • Male, 14 years and older: 900 mcg
  • Female, 14 years and older: 700 mcg
  • Pregnant women, 14 to 18 years old / 19 years and older: 750 mcg / 770 mcg
  • Breastfeeding women, 14 to 18 years old / 19 years and older: 1,200 mcg / 1,300 mcg

Vitamin A Upper limit:

10,000 IU (Vitamin A supplements overdose is toxic and can cause serious liver failure or even death.)

Good food sources (from animals): shrimp, eggs, dairy products such as cheese, yogurt and cow’s milk; fatty fish such as salmon, sardines, tuna and cod; meat such as chicken, beef and turkey; meat liver.

Good food sources (from plants): orange vegetables such as sweet potato, carrots, squash and pumpkin; green leafy vegetables such as spinach, kale, mustard greens, swiss chard, lettuce; cantaloupe melon, sweet red bell pepper, apricots, peas and broccoli.

Did you know?

  • Carotenoids can be converted into retinoids in the human body. However, certain conditions such as genetic issues, digestive problems, consumption of alcohol and exposure to chemicals can hinder this conversion.
  • Some studies link Vitamin A supplements to higher risk of lung cancer and heart disease for smokers.
  • Antacids and Vitamin A can work synergistically in treating ulcers.

B-Complex Vitamins

There are 8 B vitamins: B1 (Thiamine / Thiamin), B2 (Riboflavin), B3 (Niacin), B5 (Panthothenic Acid), B6 (Pyridoxine), B7 (Biotin), B9 (Folic Acid), B12 (Cobalamin).

B-Complex Vitamins convert food into fuel, providing energy for the body. This energizing effect, in turn, helps us withstand stressful conditions and strengthens our immune system.

Classification: water-soluble

Please refer below for more specific information about each kind of B vitamin:


Vitamin B1 (Thiamine / Thiamin)

Vitamin B1 Health benefits:

  • Improves brain function and reduces risk of Alzheimer’s Disease.
  • Promotes production of healthy red blood cells.
  • Increases appetite and aids in digestion.

Vitamin B1 Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 0.2 mg
  • Babies, 7 months to 1 year old: 0.3 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 0.5 mg (RDA)
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 0.6 mg (RDA)
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 0.9 mg (RDA)
  • Female, 14 to 18 years old: 1 mg (RDA)
  • Male, 14 years and older: 1.2 mg (RDA)
  • Women, 19 years and older: 1.1 mg (RDA)
  • Pregnant or breastfeeding women: 1.4 mg (RDA)

Vitamin B1 Upper limit:

unknown. Taking 1 kind of B Vitamin for prolonged periods of time can cause an imbalance in other B Vitamins. Thus, it is more advisable to take a complete B-Complex supplement.

Good food sources: meat such as pork, beef, poultry; internal organ meats, whole grains such as cereals and rice; nuts, legumes, leafy green vegetables such as spinach and kale; wheat germ and brewer’s yeast.   

Did you know?

Thiamine deficiency can cause high sensitivity to noise.


Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)

Vitamin B2 Health benefits:

  • Regulates thyroid activity.
  • Helps in the absorption of minerals such as iron, folic acid and other vitamins.   
  • Assists in the growth of the body.

Vitamin B2 Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 0.3 mg
  • Babies, 7 to 12 months: 0.4 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 0.5 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 0.6 mg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 0.9 mg
  • Males, 14 years and older: 1.3 mg
  • Females, 14 to 18 years old: 1.0 mg
  • Females, 19 years and older: 1.1 mg
  • Pregnant women: 1.4 mg
  • Breastfeeding women: 1.6 mg

Vitamin B2 Upper limit:

unknown

Good food sources: dairy products, oily fish such as mackerel, salmon and herring; green leafy vegetables, lean meat, mushrooms, soybeans, Brassica vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower and brussel sprouts.

Did you know?

  • Riboflavin is destroyed when exposed to light.
  • High intake of riboflavin via food or supplements turns your urine bright yellow.

Vitamin B3 (Niacin)

Vitamin B3 Health benefits:

  • Lowers high cholesterol level.
  • Promotes proper nerve function.
  • Maintains good blood circulation.

Vitamin B3 Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, 0 to 6 months: 2 mg
  • Babies, 7 to 12 months: 4 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 6 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years: 8 mg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years: 12 mg
  • Males, 14 years and older: 16 mg
  • Females, 14 years and older: 14 mg, 18 mg during pregnancy, 17 mg if breastfeeding

Vitamin B3 Upper limit:

unknown

Good food sources: dairy, eggs, breads and cereals, whole and dried grains such as rice, fish, lean meats and nuts

Did you know?

Taking niacin can cause “flushing”- feeling of warmth, tingling and itching of the body. To prevent this, do not take niacin with hot or alcoholic beverages.


Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid)

Vitamin B5 Health benefits:

  • Fights stress, depression and anxiety.
  • Helps keep hair and skin young and healthy- keeps wrinkles and gray hair at bay.
  • Relieves asthma, and can help control autism and Parkinson’s disease.

Vitamin B5 Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 1.7 mg
  • Babies, 7 months to 1 year old: 1.8 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 2 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 3 mg
  • Children, 9 – 13 years: 4 mg
  • Male and Female, 14 years and older: 5 mg
  • Pregnant women: 6 mg
  • Breastfeeding women: 7 mg

Vitamin B5 Upper limit:

unknown

Good food sources: mushrooms, cauliflower, sweet potato, broccoli, asparagus, bell pepper, cucumber, celery, avocado, lentils, chicken, turkey, yogurt, salmon.

Did you know?

Pantothenic acid got its name from the Greek word ‘pantos’, which means ‘everywhere’, as it can be found in all living cells.


Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)

Vitamin B6 Health benefits:

  • Maintains healthy level of hormones, helps treat premenstrual syndrome in women.
  • Helps treat skin conditions like acne, eczema, psoriasis, melanoma, and dry skin.
  • Hastens rate of metabolism.

Vitamin B6 Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 0.1 mg
  • Babies, 7 months to 1 year: 0.3 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 0.5 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 0.6 mg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 1 mg
  • Male, 14 to 50 years old: 1.3 mg
  • Female, 14 to 50 years old: 1.2 mg
  • Male, 51 years and older: 1.7 mg
  • Female, 51 years and older: 1.5 mg
  • Pregnant women: 1.9 mg
  • Breastfeeding women: 2.0 mg

Vitamin B6 Upper limit:

100 mg (Overdose linked to nerve damage.)

Good food sources: meat such as chicken, turkey and beef liver; fatty fish such as tuna and salmon; dairy such as milk and cheese; shrimp, lentils, beans, spinach, carrots, brown rice, sunflower seeds, banana and wheat germ.

Did you know?

Studies are being done on the effectivity of Pyridoxine in the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome.


Vitamin B7 (Biotin)

Vitamin B7 Health benefits:

  • Maintains healthy hair and skin; prevents hair loss.
  • Aids in weight loss by improving metabolism rate.
  • Helps maintain good blood sugar level.

Vitamin B7 Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 5 mcg
  • Babies, 7 to 12 months: 6 mcg
  • Children, 1 – 3 years old: 8 mcg
  • Children, 4 – 8 years old: 12 mcg
  • Children, 9 – 13 years old: 20 mcg
  • Adolescents, 14 – 18 years old: 25 mcg
  • 19 years and older / pregnant women: 30 mcg
  • Breastfeeding women: 35 mcg

Vitamin B7 Upper limit:

unknown

Good food sources: brewer’s yeast, egg yolk, sardines, nuts such as almonds, peanuts, pecans, walnuts and nut butters; soybeans, whole grains, cauliflower, bananas and mushroom.

Did you know?

While egg yolks are a rich source of Biotin, egg whites (especially raw egg whites) hinder the absorption of this nutrient.


Vitamin B9 (Folic Acid / Folate)

Vitamin B9 Health benefits:

  • Reduces risk of neural birth defects.
  • Helps prevent stroke and cancer.
  • Aids in treating mental and emotional disorders such as anxiety and depression.

Vitamin B9 Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 65 mcg
  • Babies, 7 to 12 months: 80 mcg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 150 mcg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 200 mcg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 300 mcg
  • Male and Female, 14 years and older: 400 mcg
  • Pregnant women: 600 mcg
  • Breastfeeding women: 500 mcg

Vitamin B9 Upper limit:

unknown (High levels of folate can hide a Vitamin B12 deficiency.)

Good food sources: leafy vegetables such as spinach and mustard greens, asparagus, turnip, sugar beet, brussel sprouts, beans such as lima beans, soybeans, kidney beans and mung beans; beef liver, brewer’s yeast, root vegetables, whole grains, salmon, orange juice, avocado and dairy.

Did you know?

Folic acid supplementation can help slow down the progress of age-related hearing loss and age-related macular degeneration (loss of vision).


Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)

Vitamin B12 Health benefits:

  • Helps treat sickle cell anemia
  • Aids in healthy DNA formation
  • May prevent breast cancer

Vitamin B12 Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 0.4 mcg
  • Babies, 7 to12 months: 0.5 mcg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 0.9 mcg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 1.2 mcg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 1.8 mcg
  • Males and Females, 14 years and older: 2.4 mcg
  • Pregnant women: 2.6 mcg
  • Breastfeeding women: 2.8 mcg

Vitamin B12 Upper limit:

unknown

Good food sources: mainly sourced from animal products such as organ meats, meat, eggs, dairy and shellfish. Some breakfast cereals are fortified with Vitamin B12.

Did you know?

People past the age of 50 usually lose their body’s ability to absorb Vitamin B12 from food.


Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid/Dehydroascorbic Acid)

Classification: water-soluble

Vitamin C Health benefits:

  • Promotes growth and repair of tissues in all part of the body, such as skin, tendons, ligaments and blood vessels.
  • An antioxidant that fights the negative effects of free radicals in the body.
  • Although traditionally used as a cure for the common cold, research shows that taking Vitamin C supplements doesn’t prevent or treat colds. But it can shorten the duration of the cold and make the symptoms milder.

Vitamin C Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 40 mg
  • Babies, 7 to 12 months: 50 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 15 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 25 mg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 45 mg
  • Female, 14 to 18 years old: 65 mg
  • Pregnant teens: 80 mg
  • Breastfeeding teens: 115 mg
  • Male, 14 – 18 years: 75 mg
  • Male, 19 years and older: 90 mg
  • Female, 19 years and older: 75 mg
  • Pregnant women: 85 mg
  • Breastfeeding women: 120 mg

Vitamin C Upper limit:

Dosage of more than 2,000 mg/day is not advisable as it can cause stomach problems.

Good food sources: mainly sourced from plant food such as citrus fruits (orange, grapefruit, lime, lemon), other fruits (strawberries, pineapple, kiwi, papaya, cantaloupe), vegetables such as leafy greens, squash, green beans and carrots.  

Did you know?

Vitamin C can lower blood lead levels and is effective in treating lead toxicity.


Choline

Classification: water-soluble

Choline Health benefits:

  • Maintains healthy liver function and aids in treating liver diseases such as hepatitis and cirrhosis.
  • Supports healthy pregnancy and minimizes risk of neural tube defects and fetal brain abnormalities.
  • Plays a crucial part in supporting the nervous system, especially brain development and growth.

Choline Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 125 mg
  • Babies, 6 to 12 months: 150 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 200 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 250 mg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 375 mg
  • Female, 14 to 19 years old: 400 mg
  • Male, 14 years and older: 550 mg
  • Female, 19 years and older: 425 mg
  • Pregnant women: 450 mg
  • Breastfeeding women: 550 mg

Choline Upper limit:

3.5 g

Good food sources: shrimp, egg, scallop, chicken, turkey, tuna, cod, salmon, beef, collard greens

Did you know?

High doses of choline can cause excessive sweating and salivation; and a fishy body odor.


Vitamin D (Calciferol)

Classification: fat-soluble

Vitamin D Health benefits:

  • Aids in the absorption of Calcium, which is crucial for strong bones and prevention of diseases like osteoporosis, rickets and osteomalacia.
  • Supports heart health and minimize risk of stroke, heart attack and heart failure.
  • Improves reproductive health and may minimize risk of miscarriage in pregnant women.

Vitamin D Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 12 months: 400 IU
  • Male and Female, 1 to 50 years old / Pregnant and breastfeeding women: 600 IU
  • Male and Female, 70 years and older: 800 IU

Vitamin D Upper limit:

  • 1,000 IU daily for babies 0 to 6 months
  • 1,500 IU daily for babies 6 months to 1 year
  • 2,500 IU daily for children 1 to 3 years of age
  • 3,000 IU daily for children 4 to 8 years of age
  • 4,000 IU daily for anyone over 9 years of age

Good food sources: fatty fish such as salmon, tuna, sardines; dairy, eggs, mushrooms, fortified breads and cereals.

Did you know?

Early morning sunlight is still the best source of Vitamin D- 15 minutes of direct sun exposure is enough to meet the daily requirement.


Vitamin E (Alpha-Tocopherol)

Classification: fat-soluble

Vitamin E Health benefits:

  • A potent antioxidant that fights damage caused by free radicals; helps prevent cancer.
  • Promotes healthy skin and eyes.
  • Helps reduce risk of heart disease.

Vitamin E Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 6 IU
  • Babies, 7 months to 1 year: 7.5 IU
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 9 IU
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 10.4 IU
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 16.4 IU
  • Male and Female, 14 years and older / Pregnant women: 22.4 IU
  • Breastfeeding women: 28.4 IU

Vitamin E Upper limit:

1,500 IU

Good food sources: sunflower seeds, almonds, peanuts, green leafy vegetables such as spinach, swiss chard, turnip greens, beet greens and mustard greens; avocado and asparagus.

Did you know?

As Vitamin E promotes blood circulation, it might increase the risk of bleeding when taken with blood-thinning medications.


Vitamin K

There are 3 main forms of Vitamin K:

  1. Vitamin K1, which includes phylloquinone (natural version) and phytonadione (synthetic version).
  2. Vitamin K2 or menaquinone.
  3. Vitamin K3 or menaphthone or menadione.

Classification: fat-soluble

Vitamin K Health benefits:

  • Promotes faster wound healing.
  • Improves bone health and minimizes risk of bone fractures.
  • Relieves menstrual pain and excessive bleeding.

Vitamin K Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 2 mcg
  • mcg
  • Babies, 7 to 12 months: 2.5 mcg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 30 mcg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 55 mcg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 60 mcg
  • Male and Female, 14 to 18 years old: 75 mcg
  • Male, 19 years and older: 120 mcg
  • Women, 19 years and older: 90 mcg
  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women, 14 to 18 years old / 19 years and older: 75 mcg / 90 mcg

Vitamin K Upper limit:

unknown

Good food sources: chlorophyll in plants supplies Vitamin K- most important sources are green leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach, mustard green, collard greens, beet greens, swiss chard, beet greens and parsley.

Did you know?

Freezing destroys Vitamin K, while heating has no effect on it. Avoid frozen green vegetables if you are after the Vitamin K benefits they contain.


MINERALS

Calcium

Calcium Health benefits:

  • Strengthens bone, teeth and gums.
  • Helps alleviate PMS, including headaches, moodiness, cravings, bloating and menstrual pain.
  • Controls high blood pressure.

Calcium Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 200 mg
  • Babies, 7 months to 1 year: 260 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 700 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 1,000 mg
  • Children, 9 to 18 years old: 1,300 mg
  • Male, 19 to 70 years old: 1,000 mg
  • Female, 19 to 50 years old: 1,000 mg
  • Female, 51 years and older: 1,200 mg
  • Male, 70 years and older: 1,200 mg
  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women, below 19 years of age / 19 years and older: 1,300 mg / 1,000mg

Calcium Upper limit:

2,500mg (Excess calcium can deposit in blood vessels and kidneys and cause kidney stones.)

Good food sources: tofu, dairy such as milk, yogurt and cheese; sardines, sesame seeds, green leafy vegetables such as spinach, collard green, mustard greens, turnip greens and beet greens.

Did you know?

High consumption of sodium, protein and alcohol can impair the body’s ability to absorb calcium.


Chloride

Chloride Health benefits:

  • Balances body fluids, including digestive juices.
  • Helps maintain proper PH level of body fluids.
  • Plays a role in maintaining healthy blood volume and pressure.

Chloride Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, 0 to 6 months: 0.18 g
  • Babies, 7 to 12 months: 0.57 g
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 1.5 g
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 1.9 g
  • Male and Female, 9 to 50 years old / Pregnant and breastfeeding women: 2.3 g
  • Male and Female, 51 to 70 years old: 2.0 g
  • Male and Female, 71 years and older: 1.8 g

Chloride Upper limit:

unknown (Too much chloride from salty food can cause high blood pressure.)

Good food sources: table salt or sea salt (Sodium Chloride); seaweed, rye, tomatoes, lettuce, celery and olives.

Did you know?

Chloride decreases with activities related to the loss of body fluids, such as sweating and vomiting.


Chromium

Chromium Health benefits:

  • Helps control blood sugar and manage Type 2 Diabetes.
  • Slows down loss of calcium in the body.

Chromium Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 0.2 mcg
  • Babies, 7 to 12 months: 5.5 mcg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 11 mcg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 15 mcg
  • Male, 9 to 13 years old: 25 mcg
  • Female, 9 to 13 years old: 21 mcg
  • Male, 14 to 50 years old: 35 mcg
  • Female, 14 to 18 years old: 24 mcg
  • Pregnant women, 14 to 18 years old: 29 mcg
  • Breastfeeding women, 14 to 18 years old: 44 mcg
  • Male, 51 years and older: 30 mcg
  • Female, 19 to 50 years: 25 mcg
  • Female, 50 years and older: 20 mcg
  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women, 19 years and older: 30 mcg daily

Chromium Upper limit:

unknown

Good food sources: brewer’s yeast, lean meat (including processed meat products and organ meats), cheese, whole grain bread and cereals; spices such as black pepper and thyme; mushroom, oatmeal, prunes, nuts and asparagus.

Did you know?

People with mental health problems must take extra caution in taking chromium supplements, as they can make depression, anxiety or schizophrenia worse.


Copper

Copper Health benefits:

  • Works with iron to increase red blood cells; helps treat anemia.
  • Prevents premature aging and delays graying of hair.
  • May help prevent and slow down symptoms of arthritis, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Copper Recommended daily intake:

  • *Babies, Birth to 6 months: 200 mcg
  • *Babies, 7 to 12 months: 220 mcg
  • *Children, 1 to 3 years old: 340 mcg
  • *Children, 4 to 8 years old: 440 mcg
  • *Children, 9 to 13 years old: 700 mcg
  • *Children, 14 to 18 years: 890 mcg
  • Male and Female, 19 years and older: 900 mcg
  • Pregnant women: 1,000 mcg
  • Breastfeeding women: 1,300 mcg

*Babies and children should only get copper from food sources. Please do not give them copper supplements.

Copper Upper limit:

10,000 mcg

Good food sources: oysters, squid, lobster, seeds such as sesame seeds and sunflower seeds; nuts such as cashew and walnuts; beans such as soybeans, garbanzo beans and lima beans; mushrooms and tempeh.

Did you know?

Using copper cookwares and containers help supply the mineral to your body.   


Fluoride

Fluoride benefits:

  • prevents cavities and tooth decay.

Fluoride Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 0.01 mg
  • Babies, 7 to 12 months: 0.5 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 0.7 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 1.0 mg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 2.0 mg
  • Male, 14 to 18 years old: 3.0 mg
  • Male, 18 years and older: 4.0 mg
  • Female, 14 years and older: 3.0 mg

Fluoride Upper limit:

  • 10mg

Good food sources: fluoridated water, tea and gelatin.

Did you know?

Due to the ongoing debate as to whether fluoride poses more benefits or risks to health, most fluoride supplements have not been approved by the FDA.


Iodine

Iodine Health benefits:

  • Helps prevent fibrocystic breast disease.
  • Maintains good energy level.
  • The right level of iodine in the body helps prevent goiter. (However, too much can also cause goiter so maintaining optimal balance is key.)

Iodine Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 110 mcg
  • Babies, 7 months to 1 year: 130 mcg
  • Children, 1 to 8 years old: 90 mcg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 120 mcg
  • Male and Female, 14 years and older: 150 mcg
  • Pregnant Women: 220 mcg
  • Breastfeeding Women: 290 mcg

Iodine Upper limit:

  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 200 mcg per day
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 300 mcg per day
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 600 mcg per day
  • Male and Female, pregnant and breastfeeding Women, 14 to 18 years: 900 mcg day
  • Male and Female, older than 19 (including pregnant and breastfeeding women): 1,100 mcg per day

Good food sources: sea vegetables, seafood such as scallops, codfish, shrimp, sardines, yogurt, tuna; dairy such as yogurt and milk; eggs.

Did you know?

Most people get adequate iodine from food and water. Iodine deficiency in developed countries is rare.


Iron

Iron Health benefits:

  • Helps maintain healthy hemoglobin level and increases oxygen flow in the body.
  • Boosts energy and brain function.
  • Strengthens the immune system.

Iron Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 0.27 mg
  • Babies, 7 to 12 months: 11 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 7 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 10 mg
  • Male and Female, 9 to 13 years: 8 mg
  • Female, 14 to 18 years old: 15 mg
  • Male, 14 to 18 years: 11 mg
  • Male, 19 years and older: 8 mg
  • Female, 19 to 50 years old: 18 mg
  • Female, 51 years and older: 8 mg
  • Pregnant women, 14 to 50 years / breastfeeding women, 14 to 18 years: 27 mg
  • Breastfeeding women, 19 to 50 years: 9 mg

Iron Upper limit:

  • 45 mg

Good food sources: beans such as soybeans, garbanzo beans, lima beans, navy beans and kidney beans; sesame seeds, green leafy vegetables such as spinach and swiss chard, lentils and olives.  

Did you know?

Iron inhibits the absorption of different medications and nutrients. Thus, it is best to take iron on its own and in between meals.


Magnesium

Magnesium Health benefits:

  • Has a calming effect and can relieve stress and anxiety; increases serotonin levels and helps lift depression.
  • Minimizes risk of asthma.
  • Maintains healthy blood sugar level.

Magnesium Recommended daily intake:

  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 80 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 130 mg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 240 mg
  • Male, 14 to 18 years old: 410 mg
  • Females, 14 to 18 years old (including breastfeeding mothers): 360 mg
  • Pregnant women, 14 to 18 years old: 400 mg
  • Male, 19 to 30 years old: 400 mg
  • Female, 19 to 30 years old (including breastfeeding mothers): 310 mg
  • Male, 31 years and older: 420 mg
  • Female, 31 years and older (including breastfeeding mothers): 320 mg
  • Pregnant women, 19 to 30 years old: 350 mg
  • Pregnant women, 31 years and older: 360 mg

Magnesium Upper limit:

unknown

Good food sources: seeds such as pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds; green leafy vegetables such as spinach and swiss chard; beans such as soybeans, black beans and navy beans; quinoa and cashews.

Did you know?

  • Magnesium is crucial for more than 300 chemical processes in the body.
  • People with heart or kidney problems should not take magnesium supplements unless advised by their doctor.

Manganese

Manganese Health benefits:

  • Promotes strong bone formation and helps treat osteoporosis, sprains and inflammation of the body.
  • Helps relieve PMS symptoms such as mood swings and cramps.
  • Improves reproductive health.

Manganese Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 0.003 mg
  • Babies, 7 months to 1 year: 0.6 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 1.2 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 1.5 mg
  • Male, 9 to 13 years old: 1.9 mg
  • Male, 14 to 18 years old: 2.2 mg
  • Female, 9 to 18 years: 1.6 mg
  • Male, 19 years and older: 2.3 mg
  • Female, 19 years and older: 1.8 mg
  • Pregnant women: 2 mg
  • Breastfeeding women: 2.6 mg

Manganese Upper limit:

10 mg (Overdose can damage the nervous system.)

Good food sources: cloves, grains such as brown rice, oats and rye; beans such as soybeans and garbanzo beans; spinach, pineapple, pumpkin seeds, tempeh, berries such as raspberries, strawberries and blackberries; turmeric, kiwi and figs.

Did you know?

Manganese, calcium and phosphorus work synergistically together.


Molybdenum

Molybdenum Health benefits:

  • Helps activate enzymes involved in breaking down food to produce energy.
  • Balances sulfur levels in the body. Sulfur is crucial in the detoxification process of unwanted contaminants in the body and provides antioxidant protection.

Molybdenum Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 2 mcg
  • Babies, 6 to 12 months: 3 mcg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 17 mcg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 22 mcg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 34 mcg
  • Male and Female, 14 to 18 years old: 43 mcg
  • Male and Female, 19 years and older: 45 mcg
  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women: 50 mg

Molybdenum Upper limit:

  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 600 mcg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 1,100 mcg
  • Male and Female, 14 to 19 years old: 1,700 mcg
  • Male and Female, 19 years and older: 2,000 mcg
  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women, under 19 years: 1,700 mcg
  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women, 19 years and older: 2,000 mcg

Good food sources: lentils, dried peas, beans such as lima beans, kidney beans, soybeans, black beans, pinto beans, garbanzo beans; oats and barley.

Did you know?

Molybdenum content in food is highly dependent on the soil and water used to cultivate it.


Phosphorus

Phosphorus Health benefits:

  • Maintains strong bones, teeth and muscles.
  • Assists in the body’s utilization of protein to promote growth and repair.
  • Improves the digestive system.

Phosphorus Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 100 mg
  • Babies, 7 to 12 months: 275 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 460 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 500 mg
  • Children, 9 to 18 years old: 1,250 mg
  • Male and Female, 19 years and older: 700 mg
  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women under 18 years old: 1,250 mg
  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women, 19 years and older: 700 mg

Phosphorus Upper limit:

4,000 mg (Phosphorus overdose can cause diarrhea and hardening of organs and tissues.)

Good food sources: meat, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy, nuts, legumes, whole grains, potatoes, dried fruits and garlic.

Did you know?

Phosphorus and calcium must be in balanced amounts in the body. Too much phosphorus will cause the body to use the calcium stored in the bones and lead to osteoporosis and weakened gums.


Potassium

Potassium Health benefits:

  • Assists oxygen flow to the brain and helps prevents strokes.
  • Prevents muscle cramps.
  • Regulates blood sugar and blood pressure levels.

Potassium Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 400 mg
  • Babies, 7 months to 12 months: 700 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 3,000 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 3,800 mg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years: 4,500 mg
  • Male and Female, 19 years and older / Pregnant women: 4,700 mg
  • Breastfeeding women: 5,100 mg

Potassium Upper limit:

unknown (High dosage might result to muscle weakness and irregular heart rhythm.)

Good food sources: banana, coconut water, citrus juices, avocado, cantaloupe, tomatoes, potatoes, lima beans, flounder, salmon, cod, chicken, and other meats.

Did you know?

Potassium chloride is used in lethal injections, as extremely large doses can stop the heart from beating and lead to death.


Selenium

Selenium Health benefits:

  • Antioxidant that can promote the repair of damaged DNA and prevent cancer.
  • Helps minimize risk of fungal, bacterial and microbial infections.
  • Maintains thyroid health.

Selenium Recommended daily intake:

  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 20 mcg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 30 mcg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 40 mcg
  • Male and female, 14 years and older: 55 mcg
  • Pregnant women: 60 mcg
  • Breastfeeding women: 70 mcg

Selenium Upper limit:

400 mcg (Selenium toxicity is dangerous as it can cause digestive problems, loss of energy and concentration, cirrhosis, pulmonary edema or even death.)

Good food sources: Brazil nuts, fish such as yellowfin tuna, halibut and sardines; meat such as beef, turkey, organ meats, chicken, egg and spinach.

Did you know?

Smoking, drinking alcohol and taking birth control pills can lower the amount of selenium in the body.


Sodium

Sodium Health benefits:

  • Maintains a right balance of body fluids.
  • Prevents sunstroke and heat exhaustion by supplying essential electrolytes to the body.
  • Improves brain function and keeps memory sharp.

Sodium Recommended daily intake:

no clear data as of yet

Sodium Upper limit:

  • 2,300 mg for healthy adults
  • 1,500 mg for adults with high blood pressure

Good food sources: apples, table salt, cabbage, egg yolks, bananas, carrots, baking powder and baking soda; turnip, leafy vegetables, dried peas and cheese.

Did you know?

Just one teaspoon of salt is already equivalent to 2,300 mg of sodium.


Sulfur

Sulfur supplements come in two main forms:

  1. dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO)
  2. methylsulfonylmethane (MSM)

Sulfur Health benefits:

  • Helps the body detoxify from toxins.
  • Treats skin disorders such as acne, rosacea, psoriasis, eczema, dandruff, folliculitis (infected hair follicles), warts and pityriasis versicolor.
  • Helps decrease pain, stiffness and inflammation associated with arthritis.

Sulfur Recommended daily intake:

no clear data as of yet

Sulfur Upper limit:

unknown

Sulfur Good food sources: seafood such as oysters, crabs and lobster; meat such as beef, lamb, chicken and pork; wheat germ, spinach, pumpkin seeds, nuts such as cashews, pine nuts, pecans, almonds and walnuts; dark chocolate, beans and mushrooms.

Did you know?

Sulfur has been known for its cleansing properties for centuries. Physicians used to burn sulfur in their houses or clinics to detoxify the area.


Zinc

Zinc Health benefits:

  • Promotes healthy skin and can help treat acne, eczema and alopecia.
  • Strengthens brain function and can improve memory.
  • Assists in weight loss by suppressing the appetite.

Zinc Recommended daily intake:

  • Babies, Birth to 6 months: 2 mg
  • Babies, 7 to 12 months: 3 mg
  • Children, 1 to 3 years old: 3 mg
  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 5 mg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 8 mg
  • Male, 14 years and older: 11 mg
  • Female, 14 to 18 years old: 9 mg
  • Female, 19 years and older: 8 mg
  • Pregnant women, 14 to 18 years old / Breastfeeding women, 19 years and older: 12 mg
  • Pregnant women, 19 years and older: 11 mg
  • Breastfeeding women, 14 to 18 years old: 13 mg

Zinc Upper limit:

  • Children, 4 to 8 years old: 12 mg
  • Children, 9 to 13 years old: 23 mg
  • Male and Female, 14 to 18 years old: 34 mg
  • Male and Female, 19 years and older: 40 mg

Zinc Good food sources: meat, oysters, turnip, peas, oats, peanuts, almonds, whole wheat grain, pumpkin seeds, ginger root and pecan nuts.

Did you know?

Zinc provides this unique benefit: improvement in the senses of sight, taste and smell.


Unless you have a medical condition that can benefit from higher doses of a certain vitamin or mineral, it is always best to keep intake of any nutrient in moderation.

Focus on eating healthy as maintaining a well-balanced diet can nourish your body with adequate vitamins and minerals.

Remember that it is advisable to consult with your physician first before starting on any new food supplement.