Water Soluble Vitamins

Water-soluble vitamins are a group of useful substances whose biochemical properties ensure their complete solubility in the aquatic environment.

Vitamins are a complex of chemical-organic substances that the body does not synthesize on its own and needs to be replenished from food. Deficiency leads to violations of metabolic processes.

All known vitamins are divided into two groups: fat-soluble and water-soluble. There are more water-soluble substances and there are also more functions assigned to them by nature.

Chemical and biological properties of the group of water-soluble vitamins

Water-soluble vitamins include substances that are useful for the body and have common characteristics. The first of which is the possibility of dissolving in water. This feature served as the basis for such a name for the vitamin group.

Properties of water-soluble vitamins:

  • preparations are easy to drink with water, they do not require additional components for absorption;
  • are easily absorbed into the blood from the intestines;
  • are not able to create a "depot" in the tissues of the body, are quickly removed from it (they do not stay in the tissues for longer than a day);
  • should be regularly replenished in the body (contained in most plant and animal foods);
  • overdose of water-soluble vitamins does not lead to disorders of body functions;
  • are excreted in the urine;
  • have antioxidant properties;
  • enhance the effect of other groups of vitamins;
  • lack of water-soluble vitamins leads to a decrease in the biological activity of fat-soluble vitamins;
  • an excess does not affect the human body detrimentally.

Water-soluble vitamins, how many of you?

Water-soluble vitamins are a complex of substances, most of which are B-group. These include:

Why are they needed?

Vitamin deficiency is the cause of many diseases. For example, rickets develops with a small amount of D-substance, scurvy - when there is not enough ascorbic acid, Beri-Beri fever - a consequence of B1 deficiency, pellagra - niacin deficiency. In many countries, it was possible to get rid of the epidemics of these terrible diseases with the help of vitamins. In addition, modern medicine is increasingly paying attention to microelement complexes when it comes to the treatment of cancer, cardiovascular, infectious diseases, and diseases of the respiratory system.

The best safe sources of water-soluble elements are fruits and vegetables. As a rule, plant foods contain a lot of flavins and carotenoids, almost all B vitamins are represented (with the exception of B12 and folic acid).

Fat-soluble and water-soluble vitamins: what is the difference

The main difference between water-soluble and fat-soluble vitamins is that they are not able to accumulate in the body. And non-compliance with a balanced diet for even a short time will cause hypovitaminosis. But fortunately, representatives of the water-soluble group are found in many foods.

Another advantage of these beneficial substances is the low level of toxicity. It is practically impossible to get poisoned by vitamins that dissolve in water, since they do not accumulate in tissues and are quickly excreted from the body as part of urine. Only some of them, taken in especially high doses, can provoke allergic reactions. These factors make it possible to call water-soluble substances the safest of the vitamin "family".

General characteristics

The most important for humans from the entire group are ascorbic acid and B vitamins. However, you can not reduce the beneficial properties of other water-soluble vitamins.

Vitamin C

Ascorbic acid is the most abundant form of vitamin C. It is found in many foods and all pharmaceutical formulations. Meanwhile, it is an extremely unstable vitamin. Its structure is quickly destroyed under the influence of oxygen, sunlight and high temperatures (it is almost completely lost during heat treatment). Ascorbic acid is incompatible with alcohol, birth control pills, steroids.

Vitamin C is needed for the synthesis of collagen, neurotransmitters, steroid hormones, carnitine, promotes the transformation of cholesterol into bile acid and increases the bioavailability of iron. The main functional role of ascorbic acid makes it one of the favorite vitamins for bodybuilders, as it ultimately provides energy, strength and helps build muscle.

Vitamin C is the best remedy for colds and many other diseases, with antiviral and antioxidant properties.

Ascorbic acid is essential for healthy cell development, calcium absorption, normal growth and regeneration of damaged tissues, including rapid wound healing. In addition, it strengthens capillaries, increases immunity, the body from infections, blood clotting. These white crystals in a sour taste powder are one of the favorite preparations of adults and children.

The daily dose of vitamin C ranges from 120 mg to 2 g, in some cases up to 5 g.

Vitamin C deficiency is the cause of poor wound healing, bleeding gums, edema, weakness, lack of energy. Insufficient intake of C-substance dramatically reduces the body's ability to absorb protein.

Combines with B3 and other elements of the group, calcium, magnesium, protein.

Vitamin B complex

B-group substances have many similar functions, and in the past they were generally considered one vitamin. And although B-elements work as a single team in the human body, at the same time, each of them plays an important role.

Vitamin B1

A few days of malnutrition are enough to "earn" hypovitaminosis B1. But restoring the balance of this substance is also easy - it takes only a few days. And when a “shock dose” is introduced into the body, hypovitaminosis will disappear within a few hours.

The advantage of thiamine is the ability to increase blood circulation and promote the supply of oxygen to cells, and this increases energy, regulates the process of assimilation carbohydrates, helps to form the correct composition of the blood. B1 is also needed to maintain the health of the nervous system, eliminates the tendency to depression, and improves memory.

B1 deficiency is manifested in irritability, chronic fatigue, constipation, edema, liver congestion, memory impairment, heart failure, loss of appetite, muscle weakness, poor coordination of movements, numbness of the extremities, weight loss.

Doses: It is not recommended to consume more than 1.5 grams of vitamin B1 per day. The standard dosage is within 50 mg, for athletes it is permissible to increase to 100 mg.

Well compatible with carbohydrates, vitamin C.

Vitamin B2

One of the most nutritious substances for the body, although, like other water-soluble trace elements, quickly excreted from the body. In its pure form, it is a yellow-orange powder with a bitter taste.

The role of riboflavin in the body is in many ways similar to that of B1. In addition, it is extremely necessary for children during the development period (hence another name for the substance - a growth factor), it helps to improve hair and skin. Improves vision, in particular color perception. Easily destroyed by sunlight.

Signs of B2 deficiency: cracks in the corners of the mouth, eye diseases, inflammation of the mucous membranes, sleep and digestion disorders, hair loss, dizziness, in children - growth retardation.

The daily allowance of B2 is 1.8 mg, in some cases it is permissible to increase the dose to 50 mg per day.

Compatible well with other B vitamins, especially B6, antioxidants, iron.

Vitamin B3

Nicotinic acid is involved in the functioning of the nervous system and adrenal glands, improves the secretion of the stomach and gallbladder, affects the health of the skin, improves memory.

At the cellular level - facilitates metabolic processes and the supply of oxygen to cells, reduces the reserves of "bad" cholesterol. A connection has also been established between vitamin B3 and the production of sex hormones. Sunlight and oxygen contribute to the rapid destruction of nicotinic acid.

B3 deficiency can manifest itself in pellagra, ulcers, headaches and fatigue, depression, indigestion, insomnia, dermatitis.

The body needs about 20 mg of vitamin B3 daily to function properly, in some cases, the dosage can be increased to 100 mg per day.

Combines well with B-complex elements, creatine, proteins.

Excellent sources of the substance: liver, poultry and rabbit, milk, fish, nuts, grains.

Vitamin B5

Pantothenic acid, or as it is often called the anti-stress vitamin, promotes the production of hormones responsible for good mood. It supports the proper functioning of the adrenal glands and the nervous system, affects the metabolism of fatty acids, which in turn helps to get rid of excess weight.

The "strengths" of B5 also include the ability to strengthen the immune system, relieve allergies, improve skin condition.

Pantothenic acid does not tolerate acidic or alkaline environments well. This means that during cooking, it is better not to add lemon juice, vinegar or soda to dishes.

B5 deficiency manifests itself in such symptoms as: fatigue and muscle weakness, cramps, depression, headache, discomfort in the abdomen.

The daily norm of B5 has not been determined, since in a healthy body the substance is synthesized in sufficient quantities in the intestine. In exceptional cases, the additional use of the vitamin ranges from 10 mg (depending on the level of hypovitaminosis).

Pairs well with potassium and protein foods.

Vitamin B6

Pyridoxine is one of the most significant vitamins for maintaining mental and physical health. Strengthens the immune system, promotes the growth of new cells and metabolic processes in the body. Prevents the appearance of dandruff, the development of psoriasis, eczema.

Necessary for children during periods of increased mental activity. In treatment programs, it is used as a means for detoxifying the liver. Affects the secretion of the stomach, increasing its acidity. Vitamin B6 relieves pain during menstruation and nausea during pregnancy, regulates hormonal levels in the female body.

The sun's rays have a detrimental effect on vitamin B6. To preserve the maximum amount of nutrients, it is advisable to eat vegetables raw.

Deficiency leads to fatty liver disease, weakness, irritability, insomnia, osteoporosis, arthritis, skin and nail disease. Symptoms of B6 deficiency are very similar to those of vitamin B3 deficiency.

Nutritionists recommend about 2 mg of B6 daily. A dose exceeding 2 g is toxic to the body.

Well compatible with vitamin C, magnesium, potassium, sodium, zinc.

Vitamin B9

Unlike other vitamins, folic acid is able to linger in the body - it creates its “depots” in the liver tissues, and is also worse than other substances of the group, dissolves in water.

The main role of vitamin B9 is DNA synthesis, influence on cell growth, formation of erythrocytes and leukocytes. Provides the body with energy. An important role in maintaining the balance of vitamin B9 in the body is played by the intestines - disturbances in the functioning of the organ lead to hypovitaminosis, which eventually turns into anemia.

Like vitamin B6, folic acid is important for women's health. B9 is detrimental to tobacco smoke. Also, the vitamin is afraid of heat and light.

Folic acid deficiency is associated with chronic fatigue, acne, anemia and osteoporosis. Symptoms of a lack of folic acid can be frequent disorders in the digestive system, anxiety, depression.

The minimum required daily allowance is 400 micrograms of the substance.

Combines well with proteins, vitamins C, B6, B12.

Examples of foods rich in folic acid are green and starchy vegetables, fruits, liver, legumes.

Vitamin B12

This vitamin from the B family is often used as an appetite stimulant and energy booster. Takes part in the formation of red blood cells, fights infections and allergies. For children, B12 is useful as a growth-promoting vitamin.

Hypovitaminosis most often affects vegetarians, since the only source of the substance is animal products. Does not tolerate high temperatures and bright light.

B12 deficiency often causes Alzheimer's disease, brain and nervous system disorders, and cardiovascular disease.

Intake: The daily minimum dosage of vitamin B12 is 3 micrograms, the maximum allowable dose is 30 micrograms per day.

Combines well with calcium, potassium, sodium, iron and vitamin C.

The main sources of the substance, as already noted, are animal products. The most saturated with vitamin: liver, offal, shellfish, cheese, fish, dairy products.

Vitamin H

Biotin, despite the unusual definition - vitamin H, is also a representative of group B. Another name for the substance is vitamin AT 8. The biological role in the human body is the formation of red blood cells, the effect on cell growth, participation in metabolic processes. Maintains healthy hair, protects the skin from premature aging, strengthens the bone marrow and nerve tissue.

Vitamin H is involved in more than 40 enzymatic processes in the human body. Crystals of pure biotin are highly soluble in water, quite resistant to acid, alkali and high temperature.

Biotin deficiency is rare, accompanied by symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, weakness, elevated cholesterol levels, loss of appetite, hair loss.

The usual daily intake of the vitamin is 300 micrograms.

Combines well with vitamins B5 and B9.

Water-soluble vitamins: comparison table
Substance name Functions in the body Sources
В1(thiamine) Participates in enzymatic processes, necessary for energy metabolism, supports the functioning of the nervous system. Pork, whole grains, cereals, legumes, nuts, seeds.
B2 (riboflavin) Involved in enzymatic processes, energy metabolism, essential for normal vision and skin health. Dairy products, leafy green vegetables, whole grains, cereals.
B3 (nicotinic acid) Involved in enzymatic processes, necessary for energy metabolism, important for nervous and digestive system, maintains skin health. Meat, poultry, fish, whole grains, cereals, green leafy vegetables, mushrooms, peanuts.
B5 (pantothenic acid) Involved in enzymatic processes, essential for energy metabolism. In most products.
H (B8) - biotin A participant in enzymatic processes, necessary for energy metabolism. In most foods, it is synthesized in the gut.
B6 (pyridoxine) Participates in enzymatic processes, necessary for protein metabolism, promotes the formation of red blood cells. Meat, fish, vegetables, fruits.
B9 (folic acid) Participates in enzymatic processes, necessary for the synthesis of DNA, new cells, red blood cells. Green leafy vegetables, seeds, orange juice, liver, whole grains.
B12 A participant in enzymatic processes, necessary for the creation of new cells, supports the function of the nervous system. Meat, poultry, fish, seafood, eggs, dairy products. Not found in plant foods.
C (ascorbic acid) Antioxidant, involved in enzymatic processes, necessary for protein metabolism, important for maintaining immune system. Citrus fruits, various types of cabbage, melon, strawberries, peppers, tomatoes, potatoes, papaya, mango, kiwi.
Best dietary sources of water soluble vitamins
Vitamin Daily value What products can you get from
B1 1.2-2.5 mg 200 g pork
B2 1.5 mg 3 eggs
B3 5-10 mg 200 g lamb
B5 9-12 mg 200 g beef
B6 2-3 mg 200 g fresh corn or 250 g beef
B8 (N) 0.15-0.2 mg 4 chicken yolks
B9 200 m kg Several leaves lettuce or parsley
B12 3 mcg 200 g carp
C 50-100 mg 200 g strawberries or 100 g bell peppers

Pharmacological compatibility of water-soluble vitamins

  1. The first and most important rule is that it is forbidden to mix different vitamins in one syringe.
  2. Do not combine B1 with B6, B12, C, PP, tetracycline, hydrocortisone, salicylates in one injection.
  3. B1 is incompatible with solutions containing sulfites.
  4. The combination of B1, B6, B12 affects the absorption of vitamins.
  5. B2 and B12 are incompatible.
  6. B6 is not compatible with B1, B12, caffeine and aminophylline. It is not used for peptic ulcer of the stomach and 12 duodenal ulcer. Rapid intravenous administration of the drug causes convulsions.
  7. B12 cannot be combined with B1, B2, B6, C, PP, acetylsalicylic or hydrochloric acid, chlorpromazine, gentamicin. Use with caution in angina pectoris, malignant and benign formations.
  8. B9 does not combine with sulfonamides. Carefully take people in old age, as well as those prone to cancer.
  9. C is not mixed together with B1, B12, aminophylline, tetracycline, dibazol, salicylates, diphenhydramine, iron, heparin, penicillin.
  10. Ascorbic acid and analgin should not be mixed in the same syringe.

How to preserve in foods

As already mentioned, water-soluble vitamins are contained in almost all vegetables. Of course, in order to maximize the preservation of the beneficial composition, it is advisable to eat plant foods without heat treatment. But, of course, this is not always possible. So can't lunch be tasty and healthy at the same time? In fact, if vegetables are cooked correctly, there is a chance to retain the required amount of nutrients, and at the same time, improper storage can completely deprive raw foods of vitamins and vitamins. If you don’t know how to avoid this, read the tips tested in practice by many housewives.

  1. Speed. You need to cook food quickly - the longer the vegetables are cooked, the less vitamins remain in them.
  2. Temperature. Food cooked at lower temperatures retains more of its vitamin content. As an example, if beef is cooked at 220 degrees, then almost 55% of vitamin B1 will be destroyed, and only 30% of thiamine will be destroyed by a temperature of 150 degrees Celsius.
  3. Light. Vegetables containing water-soluble vitamins should be stored in dark rooms. During cooking, they should also be covered with a lid and stop the access of oxygen to them (it destroys most of the nutrients).
  4. Freshness. For cooking, it is advisable to use the freshest products - they contain a large amount of vitamins, which means that after heat treatment there will also be more of them. It is advisable to give preference to seasonal vegetables and fruits grown in your climate zone - a significant part of the nutrients is lost during transportation.
  5. Water. When cooking vegetables, try to use as little water as possible and do not pierce vegetables with a knife (for example, when cooking jacket potatoes). The liquid should only slightly cover the surface of the vegetables. After cooking, do not leave the vegetables in the broth - immediately drain the water. To boil beans, you can use vegetable broth or broth after cooking rice. Thus, B vitamins and other beneficial substances digested from cereals will "pass" to the beans.
  6. Steamer. Use steam instead of water whenever possible. Foods cooked in a double boiler retain 50 percent more nutrients than those boiled in water.
  7. Frying. This method kills 90 percent of vitamin C, and besides, it is worth remembering the dangers of overcooked vegetable oil.
  8. Canning. This method of cooking is known to every housewife. Laborious, requires a lot of time and effort. But, in fact, there is no benefit from it. Canning almost completely destroys all water-soluble vitamins in fruits and vegetables. Therefore, it is difficult to say what importance canned food has in nutrition...
  9. Storage. Do not store vegetables for a long time. Potatoes six months after harvest lose more than 40% of vitamin C. Only half of the ascorbic acid remains in the greens already on the second day.
  10. The right choice of vegetables. If the vegetables are to be cooked, it is better to give preference to small specimens - they will cook faster and retain more of the vitamin.
  11. Proper brewing. Do not soak vegetables in water before cooking and cook with the skin on, do not cut into pieces, but boil the vegetable as a whole. Such a trick allows you to save 20% more vitamin C. Pour boiling water over vegetables, and salt as late as possible (salt “sucks” water-soluble vitamins from foods). When boiling vegetables, add a few milligrams of lemon juice or vinegar to the water - this will preserve vitamin C.

These simple tips are quite effective. By sticking to them, you can effortlessly make dinner more nutritious, tastier and more fortified.

Vitamins for beauty

The lack of one or another vitamin affects not only well-being, but also affects the appearance. Have you ever wondered why some people's hair turns gray faster and wrinkles appear rather quickly, while others manage to maintain a youthful appearance until old age? The answer, as always, is trivially simple - vitamins. These beneficial substances play an important role in metabolism at the cellular level, which is of great physiological importance for the body. The mechanism of action of vitamins to preserve beauty for many years primarily lies in the regular supply of oxygen to cells, and, as you know, it is life itself. So let's look at which vitamins are most important for beauty at any age and what lack of substances signal weak nails and split ends.

Vitamins of group B - used for skin inflammation, cracks, hair loss.

  • B1 - accelerates hair growth, relieves acne;
  • B2 - treats acne, heals microcracks;
  • B3 (nicotinic acid, PP) - keeps the skin elastic, improves its color, relieves peeling;
  • B5 - relieves dermatitis, inflammation on the lips;
  • B8 (biotin, H) - soothes inflammation on the skin, has nutritional properties (essential for facial skin and hair);
  • B9 (folic acid) - provides the skin with a healthy color, prevents graying of the hair;
  • B12 is an excellent remedy for hair loss, seborrhea, acne;
  • C (ascorbic acid) – “building material” for collagen fibers, protects the skin from early aging, pallor, prevents the appearance of spider veins, treats acne and brittle nails.

Have you noticed at least one of the described symptoms? Make sure that there are more products containing vitamins B and C on the table, and then you will not have to consult dermatologists and trichologists in search of advice on how to save nails, hair and restore skin former smoothness.

In general, it is important to remember about vitamins in food not when doctors diagnose a deficiency of nutrients in the body.

It is worth remembering about the right and healthy food every day, and regularly follow the recommendations of nutritionists. Well, the truth is they say: the disease is easier to prevent than to treat complications after it. And vitamins serve as an ideal prevention from all health troubles.