Are you contending with different health issues but can’t quite figure out why? Listed below are 10 warning signs that suggest you may be experiencing vitamin deficiencies:
Small Bumps on Back of Arms
Vitamin A supports skin health and is considered an anti-aging nutrient. Small bumps on the back of the arms, or rough, dry patches of skin are often a sign of deficiency. Vitamin A is necessary for the formation of skin and mucous lining throughout the body. It also helps prevent acne, wrinkles and reduces age spots. It helps promote healthy hair and nails. Dry hair or brittle nails also indicate deficiency.
Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin; the best sources of it are in cod liver oil, beef or sheep liver, and egg yolks.
Vitamin D has a critical role in down-regulating the pro-inflammatory molecule, NF Kappa-B that is why a vitamin D deficiency can be implicated in a host of chronic inflammatory conditions. Vitamin D is also well known for its role in bone health through its ability to regulate calcium metabolism.
Ideally, we would get our vitamin D from the sun by exposing our skin to the sun in short bursts. But in the winter, this is difficult. Vitamin D is best utilized when paired with vitamin A and is naturally found in foods that also have vitamin A such as cod liver oil, beef liver, and egg yolks.
Muscles Become Easily Fatigued
We often think of glucose being the energy source for the body and while glucose does give us energy, it is short-lived. My favorite analogy for this is the wood fire. Glucose is kindling while essential fats are the logs for the fire. Glucose starts the fire, but you need a long-burning log (or fats) to keep that fire going for several hours. The same is true with your muscles, if you want them to have lasting endurance; you need to eat more healthy fats.
Enjoy avocados, coconut oil, olive oil, fish oil, butter or ghee.
Calcium Oxalate Kidney Stones
Vitamin K is a critical nutrient in distributing calcium appropriately through the body and it helps protect the kidneys from forming calcium stones. There are three forms of vitamin K: K1, K2, and K3. K1 is found mostly in plants such as turnip greens, broccoli and cabbage and this form of the vitamin is most known for its support for blood clotting. Vitamin K2 is the key nutrient needed to protect the kidneys from stone formation. It is found in foods and made from healthy gut bacteria.
To obtain your full daily requirement of Vitamin K2 you need about 50% from food and 50% from a healthy microbiome. Vitamin K2 rich foods are natto, butter, and beef from grass-fed cows, eggs from pasture-raised chickens and aged Gouda.
Wake Up Without Remembering Dreams or Experiencing Frequent Nightmares
Thiamin (vitamin B1) is essential for proper energy production in the brain, nerve conduction throughout the body and it helps convert carbohydrates into energy. It is important for its role in the synthesis of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter that helps maintain muscle tone. It is also important in the development of the myelin sheath around our nerves when deficient it leaves us susceptible to inflammation. Thiamin is a water-soluble vitamin that is not stored in the body and must be consumed daily.
Some great sources of B1 are in sunflower seeds (I LOVE sunflower seed butter), Brewer’s Yeast, Brazil nuts, and pecans, brown rice, and lentils.
Burning and Itching of Eye/Increased Light Sensitivity
Riboflavin (B2) is linked to the blood vessel formation in the clear covering of the eye, meaning a deficiency would leave your eyes vulnerable and irritated. Riboflavin is also a precursor to produce ATP or energy in the body and it has an important role in recycling glutathione in the body, a major antioxidant. Fun fact: Riboflavin is why your urine turns bright yellow after consuming a B-complex vitamin.
Food sources of riboflavin are found in organ meats, almonds, and green leafy vegetables.
Sore Red Tongue, Canker Sores or Tender Gums
Niacin, or vitamin B3, deficiency impacts every cell, especially those areas with rapid cell turnover such as in the mouth and throughout the GI tract. It is also a precursor for the coenzymes that break down fats, proteins, and carbs into energy.
Small amounts of vitamin B3 occur in food but most niacin is converted from the amino acid tryptophan. The best sources are from liver, poultry, and fish. Some niacin can be found in avocados, dates, and prunes.
PMS Symptoms: Water Retention, Irritability and/or Breast Tenderness
Pyridoxine, or vitamin B6, supports metabolic processing of estrogen in the liver supporting overall hormone balance. Quite simply B6 helps your body remove the excess estrogen that can cause water retention, irritability, and breast tenderness right before your cycle. Pyridoxine is also necessary for HCl production in the stomach, the absorption of B12, and it is a critical component in the production of neurotransmitters in the brain.
Food sources are found in liver, egg yolks, fish, cauliflower, spinach, and avocados.
Folic Acid (B9) or Folate aids in red blood cell formation, so if this isn’t happening you’re going to be tired. It is also part of growth and development due to its role in the division of cells in the body and is particularly necessary during pregnancy. Folic Acid/Folate also supports brain health by balancing neurotransmitter levels.
Folic acid got its name from the Latin word, ‘folium’ which literally means foliage because it is found in leafy greens such as spinach, kale, and beet greens. However, it is easily lost from foods through light, heat and any type of cooking. Eat your greens as fresh as you can!
Frequent Nose Bleeds, Bleeding Gums, Bruise Easily
Bioflavonoids’, vitamin P or part of the C Complex, their main function is to increase the strength of the capillaries. The P was given to this vitamin because of its role in supporting capillary permeability and integrity. Bioflavonoids are important in the formation of collagen, which is used in all connective tissue such as the skin, ligaments, cartilage, vertebral disks, capillary walls, bones, and teeth. The bioflavonoids also support the absorption of vitamin C (ascorbic acid) and protect it from oxidation.
Bioflavonoids are the white part of citrus fruits such as orange, lemons, and grapefruits and they can also be found in rose hips, apricots, cherries, green peppers, and broccoli.
Here’s to choosing the right vitamins for your best health!