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Micronutrients Essential for Cellular Health

Vitamin A (Beta-carotene) is also called pro-vitamin A, and is another important fat-soluble antioxidant vitamin. Like vitamin E, it is transported primarily in lipoprotein particles in the bloodstream to millions of body cells. Also like vitamin E, beta-carotene prevents these fat particles from rusting and damaging the cardiovascular system. Beta-carotene is documented in a rapidly growing number of clinical studies as another protective agent against cardiovascular disease. Similarly to vitamin E, beta-carotene has been shown to decrease the risk of blood clotting. - Foods highest in vitamin A – Sweet potato, carrots (cooked), dark leafy greens, butternut squash (cooked), lettuce, dried apricots, melon, sweet red peppers, tuna fish and mango.

Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) functions as the co-factor of an important biocatalyst called pyrophosphate. This catalyst is involved in phosphate metabolism in the cells, another key energy source that optimizes millions of reactions in cardiovascular and other cells. - Foods highest in vitamin B1 – Trout, pork, sunflower seeds, macadamia nuts, whole-wheat bread, peas, squash, asparagus and dry roasted soya beans.

Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) is the co-factor for flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD), one of the most important carrier molecules of cellular energy inside the tiny energy centers (power plants) of all cells. - Foods highest in vitamin B2  - Cheese, almonds, beef and lamb, oily fish, eggs, pork, mushrooms, sesame seeds, spinach.

Vitamin B3 (Niacin) is an important nutrient, essential as the co-factor of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) and related energy carrier molecules. This energy carrier molecule is another of the most important energy transport systems in the body. Millions of these carriers are created and recharged (by vitamin C) inside the cellular energy centres of the cardiovascular system and the body. Cell life, and life in general, would not be possible without this energy carrier. - Foods highest in vitamin B3 – Fish, chicken and turkey, pork, liver, beef, peanuts, mushrooms, peas, sunflower seeds and avocado.

Vitamin B5 (Pantothenate) is the cofactor of coenzyme A, the central fuel molecule in the metabolism of our heart cells, blood vessel cells and all other cells. The metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins and fats inside each cell all lead to a single molecule, acetyl-coenzyme A. This molecule is the key molecule that helps to convert all food into cell energy. This important molecule is actually composed, in part, of vitamin B5 and the importance of supplementing this vitamin is evident. Again, cell life would not be possible without this vitamin. - Foods highest in vitamin B5 – Mushrooms, cheese, oily fish, avocados, eggs, pork, beef and veal, chicken and turkey, sunflower seeds and sweet potato.

Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine) (C) is the co-factor of pyridoxal phosphate, an important co-factor for the metabolism of amino acids and proteins in cardiovascular and other cells. Vitamin B6 is needed for the production of red blood cells, which are the carriers of oxygen to the cells of the cardiovascular system and all other cells in the body. Vitamin B6 is also essential for the optimum structure and function of collagen fibres. - Foods highest in vitamin B6 – Sunflower seeds, pistachio nuts, fish, chicken and turkey, pork, beef, dried prunes, bananas, avocados and spinach.

Vitamin B7 (Biotin) is needed for the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats and proteins. - Foods highest in vitamin B7 – Black eyed peas and beans, lentils, spinach, asparagus, lettuce, avocados, broccoli, mango, oranges, and whole wheat bread.

Vitamin B9 (Folic Acid) is a very important nutrient for the production of red blood cells and oxygen supply. The along with vitamins B6 and B12 it is a good example of how these bio-energy molecules work together in synergy, like an orchestra. Without proper oxygen transport to all the cells, their function would be impaired, no matter how much of the other vitamins you might take. It is, therefore, important to supplement the diet as completely as possible with the right essential nutrients in the right amounts. - Foods highest in vitamin B9 – Black eyed peas and beans, lentils, spinach, asparagus, lettuce, avocados, broccoli, mango, oranges, and whole wheat bread.

Vitamin B12 (Cyanocobalamin) is needed for the metabolism of fatty acids and certain amino acids in the cells of the body. Vitamin B12 is also required for the production of red blood cells. A severe deficiency of vitamin B12 can cause a disease called pernicious anaemia, which is characterized by an insufficient production of blood cells. - Foods highest in vitamin B12 – Yogurt, milk, cheese, eggs and whey powder.

Vitamin C (C) is the key nutrient for the stability of blood vessels, the heart and all other organs in the body. Without vitamin C, the body would literally collapse and dissolve, as it does with scurvy. Vitamin C is responsible for the optimum production and function of collagen, elastin and other connective tissue molecules that give stability to the blood vessels and the entire body. Vitamin C is important for fast wound healing, including the healing of millions of tiny wounds and lesions inside the blood vessel walls. It is the most important antioxidant in the body. Optimum amounts of vitamin C effectively protect the cardiovascular system and body against biological “rusting”. Vitamin C is also a co-factor for a series of biological catalysts (enzymes), which are important for the improved metabolism of cholesterol, triglycerides and other risk factors. This helps to decrease the risk for cardiovascular disease. It is an important energy molecule needed to recharge energy carriers inside the cells. - Foods highest in vitamin C – Peppers, guavas, dark green leafy vegetables, kiwifruit, broccoli, berries, citrus fruits, tomatoes, peas and papaya.

Vitamin D is essential for optimum calcium and phosphate metabolism in the body. Vitamin D is needed for the growth and stability of the bones and teeth. For centuries, vitamin D deficiency was a frequent children’s condition, causing retarded growth and malformation. Thus, in many countries, milk is enriched with vitamin D. Vitamin D is also essential for optimum calcium metabolism in the artery walls, including the removal of calcium from atherosclerotic deposits. Vitamin D, as calcitriol, influences the immune system in two ways:

Vitamin D3 avoids triggering and arming the T cells which play such a large part in the autoimmune response. D3 helps diminish that role and blocks the increased production of the specific helper T cells needed for autoimmunity.  Blocking the production of those cells decreases the ability of T cells to recognize the native protein as foreign, so fewer killer T cells are produced. To put it simply, the presence of adequate levels of vitamin D3 keeps the T cells from attacking the body’s own tissues.

As it decreases the number of T cells, vitamin D3 also diminishes the role of Beta cells in producing chemicals to destroy native tissue. The antibody response to the body’s own tissue is decreased and the reaction is blocked. Diminished destruction of the beta cells of the pancreas, the cause of type 1 diabetes, result when adequate levels of vitamin D3 are present.

Vitamin D is best produced naturally through exposure to the sun but it is important to do it without burning. Sun cream blocks ultra violet light and stops the process of turning cholesterol into vitamin D so use sun creams only for lengthy exposure. It is always best to develop your tan gradually and a tan is your best protection against the sun.


Vitamin E is the most important fat-soluble antioxidant vitamin. It protects, particularly, the membranes of the cells in our cardiovascular systems. Vitamin E also prevents free radical attacks and oxidative damage. Vitamin E is carried in low-density lipoproteins (LDL) and other cholesterol and fat-transporting particles. Taken in optimum amounts, vitamin E can prevent these fat particles from oxidizing (biological rusting) and damaging the inside of blood vessel walls. Vitamin E has been shown to render the platelets in blood circulation less sticky and, thereby, keep the blood thin and decrease the risk of blood clotting.  Vitamin E has also been used to treat angina and is a natural blood thinner or anti-platelet vitamin.  Foods highest in vitamin E – Sunflower seeds, almonds, dark leafy greens, hazel nuts, avocados, squash and pumpkins, kiwifruit, mango, broccoli, fish and plant oils (olive oil).

Vitamin K2 (H) The commonly used anticoagulant drug coumadin interferes with the metabolism and function of Vitamin K by inhibiting the enzymes needed to produce Vitamin K This drug can produce excessive bleeding and does produce progressive widespread calcification of arteries and the aorta. A clinical study from Rotterdam, Holland revealed a correlation between long term adequate Vitamin K2 intake and a lower incidence of calcification of the wall of the aorta. Arteries with no plaques have a 20 to 50 fold increase in Vitamin K2 concentration when compared to arteries with arterial plaques. Lack of Vitamin K2 causes calcium to fail to be deposited in bones where it belongs and to be deposited instead in arteries, aorta, soft tissues including muscle, breast, kidneys and in heel spurs.  A protein called osteocalcin transports calcium to bone. Vitamin K2(menaquinone-7) is used to solidify this calcium into the bone matrix. - Foods highest in vitamin K2 – Herbs (basil, thyme, parsley, coriander, marjoram, chives), green leafy vegetables, spring onions, brussel sprouts, asparagus, cucumber, soybeans and olive oil.

Magnesium (H) is nature’s calcium antagonist, and its benefit for the cardiovascular system is similar to the calcium antagonist drugs that are prescribed, except that magnesium is produced by nature itself. Clinical studies have shown that magnesium is particularly important for helping to normalize elevated blood pressure; moreover, it can help normalize irregular heartbeat. - Foods highest in magnesium – Dark leafy greens, squash and pumpkin seeds, beans, lentils, brown rice, fish, almonds, dark chocolate (I love magnesium), yogurt, avocado and bananas.

Calcium is important for the proper contraction of muscle cells, including millions of heart muscle cells. It is needed for the conduction of nerve impulses and, therefore, for optimum heartbeat. Calcium is also essential for the hardening and stability of our bones and teeth. It is also needed for the proper biological communication among the cells of the cardiovascular system and most other cells, as well as for many other biological functions. - Foods highest in calcium – Watercress, curly kale, low fat cheese, low fat milk, pak choi, okra, broccoli, green beans, almonds,

Potassium is the most important positively charged electrical particle in our body cells. It is important for the generation of energy in the cell metabolism and is needed for the synthesis of acetyl-coenzyme-A. Potassium is also necessary for the normal contraction of muscles, including the heart muscle. It plays a part in the electrical processes that are needed for the regulation of nerve impulses and activation of the muscles. - Foods highest in potassium – Dried apricots, salmon, white beans, avocados, potatoes, acorn squash, spinach, low fat yogurt, mushrooms and bananas.

Phosphorus is present in every cell of our bodies, with most of it being found in the bones and teeth. Phosphorus plays an important role in the body’s use of carbohydrates and fats, and is needed to make protein for the growth, maintenance, and repair of cells and tissues. It also helps the body make adenosine triphosphate (ATP), a molecule used to store energy. Phosphorus works with the B vitamins and also helps with kidney function, muscle contractions, normal heartbeat and nerve signalling. - Foods highest in phosphorus – Pumpkin and squash seeds, cheese, fish, shellfish, brazil nuts and pork,

Zinc is used by numerous enzyme systems as an auxiliary factor (co-enzyme). A zinc deficiency can lead to growth disorders, skin diseases and an increased susceptibility to infections. - Foods highest in zinc – Seafood, beef and lamb, wheat germ, spinach, pumpkin and squash seeds, cashews, dark chocolate (I like zinc too), pork, chickpeas and mushrooms.

Manganese is an important secondary factor for bio-catalysts. For example, it activates enzymes that play a part in DNA metabolism, the molecules that contain hereditary information. A long-term, serious shortage of manganese will result in growth inhibitions, infertility and other serious disorders. - Foods highest in manganese – Pineapple, pecans, almonds, peanuts, brown rice, whole wheat bread, pinto beans, lima beans, navy beans, spinach and sweat potato.

Copper is needed for the formation of a web structure of collagen in the blood vessel walls, which provides extra strength. It also stimulates the absorption of iron and the production of haemoglobin, the red coloured substance that is important for the red blood corpuscles. Copper is also part of an enzyme that is needed for the production of the dark pigment melanin. - Foods highest in copper – Seafood, kale, mushrooms, sesame seeds, cashew nuts, chickpeas, prunes and avocados.

Selenium is an important antioxidant that protects the body against damage by free radicals and assists its defence systems. Clinical studies have established that selenium plays an important role in the fight against cancer and cardiovascular diseases. - Foods highest in selenium – Brazil nuts (just 2 a day for the full daily value), oysters, fish, whole wheat bread, sunflower seeds, pork, beef and lamb, chicken and turkey and mushrooms.

Chromium plays an important role in carbohydrate metabolism, especially in connection with glucose and insulin. In most industrialized countries chromium deficiency is a secondary contributor to the growing incidence of diabetes. - Foods highest in chromium – Corn on the cob, sweet potato, apple, egg, tomato and broccoli.

Molybdenum is part of a great number of enzymatic reactions in the metabolism of cells, e.g. in Xanthine Oxidase -  Foods highest in molybdenum – Lentils, dried peas, lima beans, kidney beans, oats and barley.

Taurine is mainly located in the heart muscle cells, the white blood corpuscles and the nerve cells of the body. Numerous studies have indicated that patients suffering from heart failure are especially likely to have a deficiency of taurine.- Foods highest in taurine – Fish, meat, shellfish, eggs, many dairy products, and even seaweed.

Lysine. As opposed to proline, lysine is an essential amino acid, which means that the body cannot synthesize it. Daily supplementation of this amino acid is, therefore, critical. Lysine, like proline, is an important building block of collagen and other stability molecules, and its intake helps to stabilize the blood vessels and other organs in the body. The combined intake of lysine and proline with vitamin C is of particular importance for the optimum stability of body tissue. For optimum strength of the collagen molecules, its building blocks lysine and proline need to be bio-chemically modified to hydroxyl lysine and hydroxyproline. Vitamin C is the most effective biocatalyst for accomplishing this “hydroxylation” reaction and, thereby, for providing optimum strength to the connective tissue.

Lysine is another “Teflon” agent, which can help release deposited fat globules from the blood vessel deposits. Lysine is also the precursor for the amino acid carnitine. The conversion of lysine into carnitine requires the presence of vitamin C as a biocatalyst. This is another reason why the combination of lysine and vitamin C is essential. - Foods highest in lysine – Beef and lamb, cheese, turkey and chicken, pork, soybeans, fish, seafood, pumpkin seeds, eggs and white beans.

Proline. The amino acid proline is a major building block of the stability proteins collagen and elastin. More than 10% of the building blocks of collagen molecules consist of proline alone. It is easy to understand how important it is for the optimum stability of our blood vessels, and our bodies in general, to get an optimum amount of proline in our diets. Proline is very important in the process of reversing atherosclerotic deposits. Cholesterol-carrying fat globules (lipoproteins) attach to the inside of the blood vessel wall via biological adhesive tapes. Proline is a formidable “Teflon” agent, which can neutralize the stickiness of these fat globules. The therapeutic effect is twofold. First, proline helps to prevent the further build up of atherosclerotic deposits and second, proline helps to release already deposited fat globules from the blood vessel wall into the bloodstream.

When many fat globules are released from the plaques in the artery walls, the deposit size decreases and this leads to a reversal of cardiovascular disease. Proline can be synthesized by the body, but the amounts synthesized are frequently inadequate, particularly in patients with an increased risk for cardiovascular disease. - Foods highest in proline – Beef and lamb, fish, cabbage, soy and its derivatives, chives, asparagus, peanuts, wheat and watercress.  

Arginine has many functions in the human body. In connection with the cardiovascular system, one function is of particular importance. The amino acid arginine can split off a small molecule called nitric oxide. This tiny part of the former arginine molecule has a powerful role in maintaining cardiovascular health. Nitric oxide relaxes the blood vessel walls and helps to normalize high blood pressure. In addition, nitric oxide helps to decrease the stickiness of platelets and has an anti-clogging effect. – Foods highest in arginine – Turkey, pork loin, chicken, pumpkin seeds, soybeans, peanuts, spirulina, dairy, chickpeas and lentils

Bioflavonoids improve the body’s immune system, protect it from free radicals and inhibit inflammation. They also produce synergetic effects with vitamins C and E. - Foods highest in bioflavonoids – Bell peppers, strawberries, citrus fruits, broccoli, brussels sprouts, tropical fruits, garlic, spinach and green tea.

Inositol is a component of lecithin. It is essential for sugar and fat metabolism in the cells of our bodies. Inositol is also important for the biological communication process between the cells and organs in the body. Hormones, such as insulin and other molecules, are signals from outside the cell. If a hormone docks to a cell, it needs to transmit information to that cell. Inositol is part of the proper reading mechanism of this information through the cell membrane. Thus, inositol is part of the proper biological communication process, which, in turn, is critical for optimum cardiovascular health. - Foods highest in inositol – Citrus fruits (except lemon) and cantaloupe, whole grain bread, beans and legumes.

Coenzyme Q-10, also known as ubiquinone, functions as an extremely important catalyst for the energy centre of each cell. Because of their high workload, the heart muscle cells have a particularly high demand for this micronutrient. In patients with insufficient pumping function of the heart, coenzyme Q-10 is frequently deficient. An irrefutable number of clinical studies have documented the great value of coenzyme Q-10 in treating heart failure and optimizing heart performance  - Foods highest in Coenzyme Q-10 – Meats, poultry, fish, soybean, canola oils and nuts.

Curcumin works on platelets to prevent clots from forming and is a good partner for vitamin K.  It has been shown in more than 50 clinical studies to have potent anti-inflammatory activity. Curcumin is hard to absorb, so best results are achieved with preparations designed to improve absorption such as Bioperine. It is very safe and you can take two to three every hour if you need to. This spice is capable of crossing the blood-brain barrier and is a neuroprotective nutrient and supporter of overall brain health. In a test over a period of 18 months those patients receiving curcumin saw significant improvements in memory and concentration. Curcumin is beneficial to the health of postmenopausal women.

Astaxanthin is one of the most effective oil-soluble antioxidants known, astaxanthin has very potent anti-inflammatory properties. Higher doses are typically required for pain relief, and you may need 8 milligrams or more per day to achieve results.

Boswellia, also known as boswellin or "Indian frankincense," this herb contains powerful anti-inflammatory properties, which have been prized for thousands of years. This is one of my personal favorites, as it worked well for many of my former rheumatoid arthritis patients.

Bromelain is a protein-digesting enzyme, found in pineapples, is a natural anti-inflammatory. It can be taken in supplement form, but eating fresh pineapple may also be helpful. Keep in mind most of the bromelain is found within the core of the pineapple, so consider eating some of the pulpy core when you consume the fruit.

Ginger is a anti-inflammatory and offers pain relief and stomach-settling properties. Fresh ginger works well steeped in boiling water as a tea, or incorporated into fresh vegetable juice.

Evening primrose, black currant and borage oils are oils that contain the fatty acid gamma-linolenic acid, which is useful for treating arthritic pain.

White Willow Bark, your liver metabolises its major constituent – salicin – to salicylic acid, the same substance created in your body within just minutes of taking a dose of aspirin and may promote the production of new mitochondria in your cells by turning on SIRT1, the master regulator protein. A recent study with liver cells found that both aspirin and salicylic acid, by itself, increased the total concentration of mitochondria by two to three times. Because willow bark converts to salicylic acid in your liver, you get all its potential benefits without any of aspirin’s negative effects and salicin, like calorie restriction, may help control iron in your body. Experiments so far suggest that salicin can help to reduce the effects of ageing in humans.

N.B. for Vegetarians and Vegans - it would be wise to take a supplement of Lysine and Proline as it is difficult to get the correct amount from vegetables sources. Vitamin K2 is another problem for vegetarians and cheddar cheese is the main source as most vegetables only supply K1.  Vegans must use supplements.

N.B. Unlike most animals, man cannot produce vitamin C inside the body and so has to rely on the vitamin from external sources. The body utilises vitamin C to flush out many of the contaminants of modern living including alcohol. The amount of vitamin C that most everyone gets from their diet is almost always inadequate to the task and this leads to an increased risk of Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) and Cancer.



Basic Cellular Daily Health Recommendations (your daily recommended intake will vary depending on age, exposure to pollution, level of exercise and general health).




Natural Treatment UK

Skith Kew

Higher Pengegon

Pengegon

Camborne

TR14 7TZ

Tel: 01209 719266

Our thanks to the Dr Rath Foundation from where we took some of the following information. This data can be viewed by following the link below.

Dr Rath Foundation

  List of Micronutrients

Copyright © 2015 Natural Treatment UK

Vitamins

Minimum Daily Target

Preferred Daily Target

Units

Beta-carotene (Vitamin A)

1

5

mg

Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)

7

40

mg

Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)

7

40

mg

Vitamin B3 (Nicotinate)

45

200

mg

Vitamin B5 (Pantothenate)

40

200

mg

Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)

10

50

mg

Vitamin B7 (Biotin)

0.07

0.3

mg

Vitamin B9 (Folate or Folic Acid)

0.1

0.4

mg

Vitamin B12 (Cyanocobalamin)

0.004

0.01

mg

Vitamin C

1200

3000

mg

Vitamin D3 (5700 to 9600 IU during winter)

0.14

0.225

mg

Vitamin E (d-alpha- Tocopherol)

87

400

mg

Vitamin K2

50

90

mg

Curcumin  (Ubiquinol is better for over 50s)

50

400

mg

Minerals

Minimum Daily Target

Preferred Daily Target

Units

Calcium

20

150

mg

Magnesium

30

200

mg

Trace Elements

Minimum Daily Target

Preferred Daily Target

Units

Zinc

4

30

mg

Manganese

1

6

mg

Copper

0.2

2

mg

Selenium

0.02

0.1

mg

Other Important Nutrients

Minimum Daily Target

Preferred Daily Target

Units

L-Proline

110

330

mg

L-Lysine

110

330

mg

L-Carnitine

30

150

mg

L-Arginine

40

400

mg

L-Cysteine

30

50

mg

Coenzyme Q10

100

200

mg

Bioflavonoids

100

450

mg

N.B. 1 mcg (microgram) = 0.001 gm

Eating Colours - Fruits and vegetables are packed with not only vitamins and minerals, but also another healthy component known as phytochemicals. Every colour indicates a different class of phytochemicals so the greater the variety of colour on your plate the better. Be aware that, due to modern farming practices, the nutrition in foods has decreased sharply over the past 40 years. It would pay everyone to take a multi-nutrient (this is not the same as a multi-vitamin).