Saturday, April 25, 2020

Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) : Sources, Functions in our Body, Daily Requirements, Deficiency Symptoms (Beriberi)

Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) : Sources, Functions in our Body, Daily Requirements, Deficiency Symptoms (Beriberi)

Beriberi
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)


Vitamin B1 is a part of the Vitamin B complex. Vitamin B1, also known as Thiamine, is vital for completing many body functions such as the nervous system and also the brain functioning. It is a water soluble vitamin responsible for energy metabolism, which means that it enables body to transform foods (Glucose, Amino Acids and Lipids) into energy. Vitamin B1 was first discovered from brown rice by Kasimir Funk, a polish biochemist in 1912.
Insufficient intake of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) results in various ailments in the body. It is must to track the proper intake of this essential nutrient.

Sources Of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) :

Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) is one of the most essential vitamines required by the body. A deficiency of Vitamin B1 may lead to loss of appetite and weight, constipation, fatigue and depression. As Vitamin B1 is Water Soluble Vitamin, it is not stored in our body. So we have to take it through proper diet. Thiamine or Vitamin B1 occurs in all natural foods, although in small amounts. There are several food sources which are rich in Vitamin B1 (Thiamine). Here, we discuss about some of them.
Different types of seeds, brown rice, beans, oatmeal, asparagus are rich sources of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine).
  • Rice bran - 2.8 mg / 100 g
  • Oat bran - 1.2 mg / 100 g
  • White rice - 0.9 mg / 100 g
  • Black beans - 0.9 mg / 100 g
  • Soya beans - 0.8 mg / 100 g
  • Lentils - 0.9 mg / 100 g
  • Oats - 0.8 mg / 100 g
  • White beans - 0.7 mg / 100 g
  • Pinto beans - 0.7 mg / 100 g
  • Mung beans - 0.6 mg / 100 g
Beans belongs to the family of the legumes. They have a lot of nutrients present in them. All the vitamins from Vitamin A to Vitamin K are present in Beans. As you see above, they are also high in Vitamin B1 (Thiamine).

Seeds are the storehouse of energy. For a plant, to germinate all the essential nutrients it required are placed in a seed. For this reason, seeds are high in nutrients. Seeds contain good amounts of Vitamin B1 in them which are regularly required by the body. For example,
  • Flax seeds - 1.6 mg / 100 g
  • Sunflower seeds - 1.5 mg / 100 g
  • Sesame seeds - 1.2 mg / 100 g
Nuts are rich in nutrients and minerals. They contain the right amount of Vitamin B1 and helps in restoring the same to the body with a regular intake of it.
Vitamin B1 thiamine

However, it is better to be eaten nuts in dried and raw form. The cooked or roasted nuts loss about 30 percent of Vitamin B1.

  • Pine Nuts - 1.2 mg / 100 g
  • Macadamia Nuts - 1.2 mg / 100 g
  • Pistachio Nuts - 0.9 mg / 100 g
  • Peanuts - 0.7 mg / 100 g
  • Hazelnuts - 0.6 mg / 100 g
  • Brazilnuts - 0.6 mg / 100 g
Green peas also rich in Vitamin B1. They can help in maintaining effective gut health as it is full of fiber. It also contains proper amount of nutrients and minerals.

Acorn Squash is high in Vitamin B1 which is essential for the body regularly.

Cooked Asparagus has all the essential nutrients and minerals. It helps to control the blood sugar levels in the body. It also has good amount of Vitamin B1 in it.

Most meat products like poultry, pork, and fishes are good sources of Vitamin B1.

Functions Of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) In Our Body :

Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) enables the body to use carbohydrates as energy. It is essential for glucose metabolism. In presence of Mg++ ion, Thiamine or Vitamin B1 serves as a catalyst in the conversation of pyruvate to acetyl CoA and is involved in many other metabolic activities.
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) also plays a key role in nerve, muscle, and heart-functions. It has a major role to initiate nerve impulse propagation.
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) may reduce the risk of cataract. It is beneficial for the health of eyes.

Daily Requirements Of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) In Our Body :

The recommended daily allowance (RDA) of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) is 1.2 mg for males and 1.1 mg for females over the age of 18 years. It is also recommend that pregnant or breastfeeding women of any age should take 1.4 mg of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) each day.

Deficiency Symptoms Of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) :

Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) deficiencies are relatively rare, as it is plentiful in daily normal diets. But a deficiency of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) can cause Beriberi.

Beriberi : Beriberi is caused due to deficiency of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine). There are four types of Beriberi–
  • Dry Beriberi - It is mainly a neurological disorder. It generally affects the Perpheral Nervous System. Mental confusion, decreased muscle functions (particularly in lower legs), tingling or loss of felling in the feet and hands, difficulty in speaking, vomiting, involuntary eye movements are the symptoms of dry beriberi.
  • Wet Beriberi - It is mainly a cardiovascular disturbance. Shortness of breath, rapid heart rate, swollen lower legs, anorexia nervosa, increase of lactic acid and pyruvic acid in blood, polyneuritis, etc. are the symptoms of wet beriberi.
  • Mixed Beriberi - It is both the neurological and cardiovascular disturbance.
  • Infantile Beriberi - It generally arises in infants of Vitamin B1 deficient mothers.
Wernicke Korsakoff syndrome is developed in alcoholic and narcotic abusers due to insufficient intake or defective absorption of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine). Loss of memory, apathy and uncontrolled to and fro movements of eyeballs are the main symptoms.

*Read more about Vitamins :
1. Definition of Vitamin, Provitamin, Antivitamin, Types and Functions of Vitamins

2. Vitamin A : Sources, Functions, Deficiency Symptoms

3.Vitamin D : Sources, Functions, Deficiency Symptoms

4. Vitamin C : Sources, Functions, Deficiency Symptoms

5.Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) : Sources, Functions, Daily Requirement, Deficiency symptoms

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Vitamin C : Sources, Daily Requirements, Functions In Our Body, Deficiency, Hipervitaminosis

Vitamin C : Sources, Daily Requirements, Functions In Our Body, Deficiency, Hipervitaminosis

Deficiency of Vitamin C
Vitamin C

Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid) is a water-soluble vitamin found in a lot of fruits and vegetables. It cannot be produced by our body and also our body cannot store it, which means we need it from our diet every day to maintain adequate levels of Vitamin C in our body. Vitamin C plays an important role in number of bodily functions including the production of Callogen, L-carnitine and some neurotransmitters. It also helps metabolize protein and it's antioxidant activity may reduce the risk of some cancers. Vitamin C is the most sensitive of all vitamins to heat.


Sources Of Vitamin C :

The main dietary sources of Vitamin C are fresh fruits and green leafy vegetables. Traces of Vitamin C occur in fresh meat and fish but scarcely in cereals. When you regularly has consumed diet rich in fruits and vegetables, then you are probably are getting enough Vitamin C. Here are the list of Foods (having highest amount of Vitamin C) that are very healthy and easily available.
Source of vitamin C
Sources of Vitamin C


Guava : Guava is very rich of Vitamin C. One medium-sized Guava contains about 125 mg of Vitamin C.

Amla Or Indian Gooseberry : Amla or Indian Gooseberry is one of the excellent sources of Vitamin C. Every 100 gm of Amla contains 41.6 mg of Vitamin C.

Orange : One full glass of 240 ml orange juice contains near about 125 mg of Vitamin C. So you only need to take one serving that can supply enough Vitamin C to your body. If you eat one whole orange of average size, you are supplied with Vitamin C of 50 mg and its flesh containing fiber helps you to promote easier digestion.



Grapefruit : One normal-sized Grapefruit is packed with about 90 mg of Vitamin C. In an average, every 100 gm of Grapefruit contains 37 mg of Vitamin C.



Green Pepper : This kind of medium-sized bell pepper contains 95 mg of Vitamin C, which supply your body sufficient amount of Vitamin C of one full day.



Red Sweet Pepper : It is quite similar to green pepper, but only difference is they taste milder in flavour. One red sweet pepper contains upto 150 mg of Vitamin C.



Pineapple : Pineapple is an another delicious fruit which contains about 56.4 mg of Vitamin C in 100 gm sliced pineapple.



Papaya : One large papaya is packed with about 230 mg of Vitamin C. So, one cup of sliced papaya supplies you enough amount of Vitamin C.



Kale : It is also often used as salad. One cup of raw kale contains about 80 mg of Vitamin C and Kale is also rich in Vitamin A, Calcium and Iron.



Snow Pea : One cup of cooked snow peas contains about 75 mg Vitamin C. It is also rich source of Vitamin A, Vitamin K, calcium and protein.



Strawberry : Strawberry is often easily added into oatmeal, cereal or yogurt as a healthy breakfast. With eating just 100 gm of strawberry slices, you may get 58.8 mg of Vitamin C supply.



Kiwifruit : This one green little fruit can provide 60 mg of Vitamin C. It also consumed for weight loss and healthy digestion.



Brussels sprout : One cup of cooked Brussels sprout contains 96 mg of Vitamin C and it is also rich in fiber which improves digestion. It acts as antioxidant for healthier looking skin.



Tomato : One raw tomato contains about 20 mg of Vitamin C.



Cobbage : One cup of cooked cabbage has about 60 mg of Vitamin C.



Cauliflower : One cup cooked cauliflower has about 30 mg of Vitamin C, and also rich in fiber, calcium, potassium, folate and Vitamin K.



Broccoli : One cup of chopped cooked broccoli contains about 50 mg of Vitamin C. It also provides great nutrients of calcium, potassium, fiber, Vitamin A and Vitamin K.



Honeydew Melons : You can get around 30 mg of Vitamin C from one cup of honeydew melon balls. It also contains potassium, Vitamin B complex and Vitamin K.



Cantaloupe : Every 100 gm of cantaloupe contains about 36.7 mg of Vitamin C. Thus, by eating just one cup of cubed cantaloupe, you consume about 60 mg of Vitamin C in your body.



Potato : One medium-sized potato contains about 10 mg of Vitamin C.



Lemon : Just one lemon can supply your body hoto 31 mg of Vitamin C.



Blackcurrant : Blackcurrant provide your body about 60 mg of Vitamin C per 100 gm.



Litchi : 100 gm of Litchi contains about 71.5 mg of Vitamin C.



Clementine : 100 gm of Clementine contains hoto 48.8 mg of Vitamin C.



Mulberry : 100 gm of Mulberries supply your body about 36.4 mg of Vitamin C.



Mango : 100 gm of sliced mango contain hoto 27.7 mg of Vitamin C.




Functions Of Vitamin C in Human Body :

Aside from its ability to prevent Scurvy, Vitamin C is also essential for many metabolic processes.


(1) Vitamin C is essential for the synthesis and maintenance of collagen. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body. It comprises about 25% to 35% of the total protein content in the body. Its strong, connective, elongated fibrils are found in skin, ligaments, tendons, cartilage, bone, blood vessels, the intestines, and the discs between spinal vertebrae. It is also found in the cornea and in muscle tissue.


(2) Vitamin C helps to protect the skin by promoting the production and migration of fibroblasts that support normal wound healing.


(3) Vitamin C protects the skin from wrinkles seen in premature aging.
(4) High concentration of Vitamin C stimulate the synthesis of type IV collagen, which has important filtration characteristics in the kidney, the blood-brain barrier, and the arterial lining.


(5) Vitamin C has a major role in synthesis of Basement Membrane which has important functions in the kidneys, lungs, etc.


(6) Vitamin C maintains the gel-like state of the basement membrane, helping to suppress tumor invasion through the basement membrane. In addition, basement membrane functions as a restrictive barrier to prevent cancer cells from passing deeper into tissues.


(7) Vitamin C accelerates the deposition of other important basement membrane protein in the area between the dermis and epidermis.


(8) Vitamin C is an essential cofactor for the synthesis of carnitine - an amino acid that is necessary for the transport of fatty acids into mitochondria. This transfer of fatty acids is a key factor in the production of the ATP that is necessary for cellular energy.


(9) Vitamin C has direct involvement in the synthesis of neurotransmitters (like norepinephrine) that facilitate the electric flow between neurons and nerve cells in the body and in the brain. The body's ability to respond to the external and internal environment, as well as the brain's ability to think and to remember, is dependent on these essential substances.


(10) Vitamin C promotes calcium incorporation into bone tissues. It also protects against leaching of calcium out of the bones, and fights the oxidative stress that works against assimilation.


(11) Vitamin C also stimulates the formation of the cells that incorporate calcium into bone tissue (osteoblasts) and inhibits the development of cells that dissolve calcium out of bone tissues (osteoclasts).


(12) Vitamin C is also required in collagen cross-linking, needed to form the dense matrix for optimal bone strength.


(13) As a powerful antioxidant, Vitamin C fights oxidative stess in bone tissues and may also protect against damage caused by harmful molecules (free radicals), toxic chemicals, pollutants.


(14) Vitamin C has a major role in functions and maintenance of Immune System of human body, such as –
  • Production of interferons
  • Functions of phagocytes, Nitric oxide production by phagocytes
  • Cytokine production by white blood cells
  • Cell-mediated immune response
  • T-lymphocyte and B-lymphocyte proliferation
  • Antibody production and complement activity
  • Natural killer cell activity
  • Detoxification of histamine
  • Neutralization of oxidative stress
  • Immune response to vaccination
  • Prostaglandin formation
  • Cyclic GMP levels in lymphocytes


(15) Vitamin C inhibites various forms of T-lymphocyte death and Neuraminidase production.


(16) Vitamin C can help to manage blood chemistry levels - Vitamin C is helpful in managing blood pressure, blood cholesterol and blood uric levels that can help lower heart disease risk factors.


(17) It can help to prevent iron deficiency by improving iron absorption.

*Read also -->





Daily Requirements of Vitamin C :

The daily requirements of Vitamin C generally depends on your age. According to National Institute of Health (NIH), the recommended dietary allowanc (RDA) for Vitamin C for human as follows –
  • For Children - 40 mg to 60 mg per day
  • For Adult Men - 90 mg per day
  • For Adult Women - 75 mg per day
  • For Pregnant Women - 85 mg per day
  • Breastfeeding Women - 120 mg per day
People who smoke have to take more Vitamin C than the average person because smoking depletes Vitamin C in the tissues and blood.


Deficiency Symptoms Of Vitamin C :

Severe deficiency of Vitamin C results in Scurvy. Symptoms of Scurvy can begin within three months of decreased Vitamin C intake. These are the following symptoms of Scurvy –

(1) Dental :
Gingivitis
Bleeding gums
Receding gums
Dental caries
(2) Hematological/Connective Tissue
Ecchymoses
Petechiae
Hemolytic Anemia
(3) Integumentary & Rheumatological
Impaired wound healing
Follicular hyperkeratosis
'Coiled' hairs
Perifollicular hemorrhage
Joint Pain
Sjogren's syndrome
(4) Systemic
Depression
Fatigue
Weakness
Anorexia
Neuropathy
Hypertension
Dyspnea

It is to be noted that any/some of the above symptoms may be developed in your body at a time due to deficiency of Vitamin C.



Hypervitaminosis Of Vitamin C :

As Vitamin C is water soluble, our body will process excess vitamin C and pass it out in urine to avoid toxification. However, excess intake of Vitamin C for a long time may lead to hypervitaminosis of Vitamin C causing –
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Insomnia
  • Formation of oxalate stones in kidney
  • The excessive consumption of vitamin C may aggravate iron storage disease in patients of thalassemia or hemochromatosis due to excess absorption of iron from intestine.

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Vitamin D : Sources, Functions In Our Body, Daily Requirement, Deficiency Symptoms And Hypervitaminosis Of Vitamin D

Vitamin D : Sources, Functions In Our Body, Daily Requirement, Deficiency Symptoms And Hypervitaminosis Of Vitamin D

Vitamin D deficiency Rickets
Vitamin D


Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin that plays a very important role in human body. Vitamin D is essential for bone health. Research suggests that it may have other benefits too, such as protecting against colds and fighting depression. Vitamin D is called as Antirachitic factor as it prevents 'Rickets'. It is found that there are six types of Vitamin D. The nutritionally important forms of Vitamin D in human are Calciferol (Vitamin D2) and Cholecalciferol (Vitamin D3).

Calciferol may be derived by irradiation of the plant sterol, ergosterol.

Cholecalciferol is the naturally occurring (performed) Vitamin D which is found in animal fats and fish liver oils. It is also derived from exposure to Ultra violet (UV) rays of the sunlight which convert the cholesterol in the skin to Vitamin D. Vitamin D stored largely in the fat depots.


Sources Of Vitamin D

Vitamin D is unique as it is derived both from Sunlight and Foods.


  • Vitamin D from Sunlight :


Our body has the amazing mechanism to creat Vitamin D from direct sunlight on our skin when we are outdoors. Vitamin D is synthesized by the body by the action of UV rays of Sunlight on 7-dehydrocholesterol, Which is stored in large aboundance in the skin. But excessive exposure to UV rays is critical, this can be filtered off by air polution. Dark-skinned races such as Negros, also suffer from this disadvantage because black skin (due to presence of Melanin) can filtered off upto 95% of UV rays. These people of African, African-Caribbean or South-Asian origin will need to spend longer in the sun to produce the same amount of vitamin D as someone with lighter skin. But it is not known exactly how much time is needed to be in the sun to meet the daily requirement of Vitamin D.
  • Vitamin D from Foods :


  1. Mushroom : Just like human, some species of mushrooms have the capacity to produce Vitamin D when exposed to Ultra violet light. In 100 grams of Mushrooms of serving, the quantity of Vitamin D is 470 - 700 IU.
  2. Orange : Orange is a good source of Vitamin D. One cup of Orange juice have approximately 140 IU of Vitamin D
  3. Cereals : Cereals like Wheat, Cornflakes, Dalia, Ragi, Maize also has a good quantity of Vitamin D.
  4. Soya Milk : It is easily available in the every local market in canned form or otherwise, you can easily make it at home. For preparing it, soak milk overnight then grind it well and then filter the mixture. One cup of Soya Milk has 110 - 125 IU of Vitamin D.
  5. Curd : Card is also a good source of vitamin D. But make sure milk used at the time of curd preparation should be fortified with Vitamin D. One cup of 100 grams Curd has 90 - 100 IU of Vitamin D.
  6. Egg Yolk : One yellow portion of egg i.e. Egg Yolk contains Vitamin D. In one egg yolk has 40 - 50 IU of Vitamin D.
  7. Cod Liver Oil : This is oil extracted from the liver of the cod fish and rich in Vitamin D. It is available in market in the form of capsule. It also contains omega 3 fatty acids.
  8. Salmon Fish : It is a party fish and great source of Vitamin D. Quantity of Vitamin D is on an average 450 IU per 100 grams of serving.
  9. Sardine Fish : In case of Sardine Fish, quantity of Vitamin D per 100 grams of serving is 45 IU.
  10. Canned Tuna : Canned tuna contents 268 IU of Vitamin D per serving. But it contains significant quantity of poisonous methylmercury. So it is recommended to intake it in minimum limit.
  11. Cow's Milk : Cow's milk is a good source of many nutrients, including Calcium, Phosphorus and Vitamin D. It usually contains about 45 - 55 IU of Vitamin D per 100 ml of milk.

Functions of Vitamin D :


Vitamin D is an important vitamin required to maintain healthy life. Vitamin D plays several critical roles in our body, such as–


  1. Vitamin D promotes intestinal absorption of Calcium and Phosphorus to maintain bone health.
  2. Vitamin D stimulates the mineralization of bones to prevent osteoporosis.
  3. Vitamin D helps in the growth of teeth.
  4. Vitamin D has also some importance to control the functions of Parathyroid gland.
  5. Vitamin D has a major role to boost immune health as it activates white blood cells to fight against foreign bodies.
  6. Vitamin D is necessary for the proper functioning of Kidneys.
  7. Vitamin D is also required to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disorders.
  8. Vitamin D helps to boost cognitive health. Vitamin D3 regulates the enzyme that converts amino acid trypsin to serotonin. Serotonin is a neuro-transmitter which affects our mood and brain development.
  9. Vitamin D is also needed for proper muscle strength.
  10. Vitamin D (mainly Cholecalciferol) also helps in maintaining healthy sleep and prevent mood disorders.


Daily Requirement of Vitamin D :

According to the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academy of Science, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for Vitamin D is 600 IU per individuals aged from 1 year to 70 years. For people aged 71+ year the value of RDA is 800 IU.

However, Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) said that is a tropical country like India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, under minimum exposure to sunlight, a specific recommendation of a daily supplements of 400 IU is suggested.


Deficiency Symptoms of Vitamin D :

Due to insufficiency of vitamin D, a large amount of calcium and phosphorus is released from the body. Therefore, the amount of calcium and phosphorus in the blood has been decreased and it causes Rickets in children and Osteomalacia in adults.


Rickets : Deficiency of vitamin D leads to Rickets, which is usually observed in young children between the age of six months and two years. There is reduced calcification of growing bones. Rickets is characterized by growth failure, bone deformity, muscular hypotonia, tetany and convulsions due to hypocalcaemia. The bony deformities include checked legs, deformed pelvis, pigeon chest, Harrison's sulcus, ticket risau, kyphoscoliosis, etc.



Osteomalacia : Due to deficiency of vitamin D, a large amount of calcium and phosphorus is released from the body and causes low density of calcium in the plasma. Due to this, bone begins to decay.
In adults, Vitamin D deficiency during long period may result in osteomalacia which occurs mainly in women, especially during pregnancy and lactation when requirements of Vitamin D are increased.
Vitamin D insufficiency also leads to secondary hyperparathyroidism that causes increased bone loss, osteopenia, osteoporosis, and increased fracture risk.

In case of severe Vitamin D deficiency, it can cause myopathy, which can cause muscle weakness and pain.

Due to deficiency of Vitamin D, you may feel fatigue and Tiredness.

A depressed mood may also be a sign of Vitamin D deficiency, particularly in older adults.

Deficiency of Vitamin D may cause in slow healing of wounds after surgery or injury.


Ill Effects Due To Hypervitaminosis Of Vitamin D :

Vitamin D is necessary for our good health but more than what is necessary is not necessarily good. Hypervitaminosis of Vitamin D is a rare case but potentially serious condition. It occurs when you take in take in too much Vitamin D. It usually the results of taking high-dose Vitamin D supplements.

The abnormalities due to excessive amount of Vitamin D in the body are as follows –
  1. Hypervitaminosis of Vitamin D can cause excessive intestinal absorption of calcium and phosphorus; and calcium levels in the blood will rise. This can lead to a condition called hypercalcemia or hypercalcaemia. Due to this, calcium will be stored in kidney, heart and other parts of our body.
  2. Weight loss
  3. Nausea
  4. Dizziness


*Read about : Vitamin A : Sources, Functions in Our Body, Daily Requirement, Deficiency Symptoms, Hypervitaminosis of Vitamin A

*Read about : Definition of Vitamin, Types of Vitamins, Characteristics of Vitamin, Provitamin and Antivitamin

Saturday, April 11, 2020

Vitamin A : Sources, Functions in Our Body, Daily Requirement, Deficiency Symptoms, Hypervitaminosis of Vitamin A

Vitamin A : Sources, Functions in Our Body, Daily Requirement, Deficiency Symptoms, Hypervitaminosis of Vitamin A

Vitamin A : Sources, Functions in Our Body, Daily Requirement, Deficiency Symptoms, Hypervitaminosis of Vitamin A
"Vitamin A"

Vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin which is highly important for our sound health. Vitamin A has key role in maintaining a good health of our vision, our immune system and cell growth. Vitamin A covers both a pre-formed (or active) vitamin - retinol, and a provitamin - beta carotene, some of which is converter to retinol in the intestinal mucosa and liver. Whereas the active form of Vitamin A (Retinol) only comes from fat soluble sources.

Sources of Vitamin A :

Vitamin A widely distributed in animal and plant foods –

(a) Animal based foods which are rich in active form of Vitamin A (Retinol),
(b) Plant based foods with Provitamin beta carotene.

(a) Animal foods :

Sources of active Vitamin A (Retinol) are liver, egg, butter, cheese, whole milk, marine fish, meat etc. Let's read some important facts–
  • Beef Liver - Liver is the richest source of Vitamin A in its active form (Retinol). This is one of the most nutrient dense organ meats available. Research shows that only 100 gm of liver provides 1,049 % of the recommended daily value of Vitamin A.

  • Cord Liver Oil - One teaspoon of Cord liver oil provides 150 % of your daily value of Vitamin A. Cord Liver Oil should only be purchased if it is extra virgin and has not been heat treated.

  • Egg - Vitamin A (Retinol) can also be found in eggs, especially within the yolk. One large egg provides 17 % of your daily value of Vitamin A.

  • Butter - One tablespoon of butter contains 11 % of your daily value of Vitamin A.

  • King Mackerel - This delicious marine fish provides 28 % of your daily value of Vitamin A in the active form of Retinol. It is also a rich source of Omega 3 fatty acids which lower inflammation throughout the entire body.

(b) Plant Foods :

The cheapest source of Vitamin A is green leafy vegetables such as spinach and amaranth which are found in great abundance in nature throughout the year. The darker the green leaves, the higher its carotene content. Vitamin A also occurs in most green and yellow fruits and vegetables such as papaya, mango, pumpkin and in some roots like carrots. The most important and effective carotenoid is beta carotene which has the highest Vitamin A activity. Let's read some important facts–
  • Carotenes are converted to Vitamin A (Retinol) in the small intestine and liver. Unfortunately, only 3-6% of the intake of beta carotene is converted into the active form.

  • It is also noted that this action is poorly accomplished in malnourished children and those suffering from diarrhea.

  • Mango - One medium sized mango contains 20% of the daily value of Provitamin A (Beta carotene).

  • Kale - Kale is one of the most nutrient dense super foods on the planet. It also contains antioxidants and one cup supplies 98 % of your daily value of Provitamin A.

  • Pumpkin (Winter Squash) - One cup of cooked squash or pumpkin contains 62 % of your daily value of Provitamin A.

  • Collard Greens - One medium sized cup of cooked collards contains 80 % of your daily value of Provitamin A.

  • Carrots : One medium carrot contains 44 % of your daily value of Provitamin A (Beta carotene), along with a host of other important nutrients.

  • Sweet Potato : One medium sized cup of cooked sweet potato contains 204 % of your daily value of Provitamin A.

Read more :
 Vitamin : Definition, Characteristics, Types of Vitamins & Antivitamin and Provitam

Vitamin D : Sources, Functions of Vitamin D, Daily Requirement in our body, Deficiency Symptoms, Hypervitaminosis of Vitamin D

Vitamin C : Sources, Daily Requirements, Functions In Our Body, Deficiency, Hipervitaminosis

Functions of Vitamin A :

Vitamin A participates in many bodily functions –
  1. Vitamin A contributes to the production of retinal pigments (Rhodopsin) which are needed for vision in dim light.
  2. Vitamin A is necessary for maintaining the integrity and normal functioning of glandular and epithelial tissue which lines intestinal, respiratory and urinary tracts as well as the skin and eyes.
  3. Vitamin A also participates in body growth especially skeleton growth.
  4. Vitamin A also acts as anti-infective. There is increase susceptibility to infection and lowered immune response in Vitamin A deficiency.
  5. Vitamin A helps in the digestion of carbohydrates.
  6. Vitamin A is also plays an important role in Gene Transmission and protein formation.

Daily Requirement of Vitamin A :



  • For Adult Women – 700 micrograms or 2330 IU
  • For Adult Men – 900 micrograms or 3000 IU
  • For children of ages 4 years to 8 years – 400 micrograms or 1330 IU
  • For children of ages 9 years to 13 years – 600 micrograms or 2000 IU
(IU = International Unit, 1 IU = 0.3 micrograms)


Note : The daily intake of Vitamin A must not exceed 3000 micrograms or 10000 IU for adults. Otherwise, it causes toxicity. During pregnancy, intake of more 20000 IU Vitamin A daily is associated with fatal malformations.


Deficiency of Vitamin A :

A lack of insufficient intake of Vitamin A through proper diet over a long time leads to the deficiency of Vitamin A or Hypovitaminosis of Vitamin A in your body.
  • The characteristics of Vitamin A deficiency are predominantly ocular. They include Nightblindness, Conjunctival xerosis, Bitot's spots, corneal xerosis and keratomalacia.

  • Nightblindness is the difficulty or problem for the eyes to see in dim light. Vitamin A has a vital role in production of Rhodopsin which helps to see in dim light.

  • In Conjunctival xerosis, conjunctiva becomes dry and non-wettable. Instead of looking smooth and shiny, it appears muddy and wrinkled.

  • Bitot's spots are triangular, pearly-white or yellowish, foamy spots on the bulbar conjunctiva on either side of the cornea.

  • Corneal xerosis is a particularly serious case. The cornea appears very dull, dry and non-wettable and eventually opaque. There has possibility of being corneal ulceration.

  • Keratomalacia of cornea is a grave medical emergency. If this case, the cornea become soft and may burst open. This process is a rapid one. If the eye collapses, the vision is lost.


  • Due to deficiency of Vitamin A, normal body growth may be disrupted.

  • Skin becomes thick, dry and itchy. The sebaceous gland and the Sweat gland become damaged and the hair follicle closes with keratin. Thus, the human skin becomes as uneven as the frog skin.

  • Lack of Vitamin A damaged the epithelial tissues of Kidney and Urinary tract. There is a possibility of forming stone in the kedney.

  • As the deficiency of Vitamin A leads to damage of epithelial tissues, there increases the chances to be infected easily.

Hypervitaminosis of Vitamin A :

Symptoms of hypervitaminosis of vitamin A are seen in people who are eating more vitamin A than normal daily requirement. The symptoms are:
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sleepiness
  • Decrease of body weight
  • Hair loss
  • Wounds in the eye
  • Low activation of the sexual gland

Click here to read about Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)

Click here to read about "Vitamin B2" or "Riboflavin".

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Vitamin : Definition, Characteristics, Types of Vitamins & Antivitamin and Provitamin

Vitamin : Definition, Characteristics, Types of Vitamins & Antivitamin and Provitam

Vitamin : Definition, Characteristics, Types of Vitamins & Antivitamin and Provitamin
Vitamin


From the results of different examinations performed worldwide in the Nineteenth Century, it is proven that some human diseases as Night Blindness, Scurvey and Beri-Beri caused by deficiency of some important nutrients other than Carbohydrates, Proteins and Fats. Then the concept of Vitamin comes in form.

The term Vitamin is derived from the word Vitamine, which was first coined in 1912 by scientist Casimir Funk. He isolated a complex of micronutrients from Brown Rice and he assumed that it may contain an 'Amine' group. The letter "e" at the end of  the word "vitamine" was later removed, when it was realized that every vitamins need not be nitrogen-containing amines. Later, all the vitamins were discovered (identified) between 1913 and 1948.

Definition of Vitamin :

Vitamins are non-caloric organic micro-nutrients and a vital compound or substance that an organism requires in diet in small quantities (from few micro-grams to few milligrams) for
  • Normal growth
  • Development
  • Metabolism
  • Physiological function &
  • Optimal health of body.
Vitamins cannot be synthesized in the organism, either at all or not in sufficient quantities, and therefore must be obtained through proper diet.

Characteristics of Vitamins :

  1. Most of the vitamins are synthesized in the plant body and few vitamins are synthesized in animals. As vitamins are natural components of foods, there are some vitamins in very small amounts in every food we take.
  2. They are essential for normal physiologic functions like growth, metabolism, reproduction, etc.
  3. Each vitamin has a specific function to perform and deficiency of any particular vitamin may lead to specific deficiency disease.
  4. When vitamins are absent in the regular diet, they will cause a specific deficiency in our body.
  5. Most vitamins act as co-enzymes with enzymes in metabolism.
  6. We need vitamins in small quantities in diet as vitamins work well in low concentration.
  7. Vitamins are partially wasted after being used in metabolism and excreted from the body.
  8. A small amount of vitamins may store in our body. Generally fat soluble vitamins are stored in the liver and lower layer of the skin and vitamin C is in the adrinal cortex.
  9. Vitamins are essential for life, but not all vitamins are needed for all kind of animals or organisms.
  10. Some vitamins are water soluble (Vitamin C and Vitamin B complex) and some vitamin are fat soluble (Vitamin A, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Vitamin K).


Types of Vitamins :

In humans, 13 different vitamins are required in diet. On the basis of their solubility, vitamins have been classified into two main groups, i.e. (1) Water soluble vitamins (include 9 vitamins), (2) Fat soluble vitamins (include 4 vitamins).

Water Soluble Vitamins :

The vitamins which are soluble in water and insoluble in fat are called Water Soluble Vitamins. Water soluble vitamins, which include all Eight of the vitamin B complex (Thiamine, Riboflavin, Niacin, Folic acid, Pyridoxine, Pantothenic acid, Biotin and Cyanocobalamin) and vitamin C. These do not stay in the body for long because the body cannot store them. Because of their water solubility, the water soluble vitamins if ingested in excess amounts are readily excreted in urine and produce no toxicity.

Fat Soluble Vitamins :

The vitamins that are insoluble in water but soluble in fat (or ethers, Chloroform, alcohol etc.), are called Fat Soluble Vitamins. These types of Vitamins are usually found in the fat content in foods. Sources of these may also be found in vegetable oils, nut, egg yolk, fish oil, whole grains and deep green leafy vegetables. These are easily stored in the fatty tissues of the body and liver. Stored vitamins can act as reserves for months. Also, these vitamins are absorbed through the intestinal tract with the help of fats, or lipids. These include 04 vitamines –
  • Vitamin A (Retinol, Retinal/Retinaldehyde & Retinoic acid)
  • Vitamin D (Calciferol),
  • Vitamin K (Phylloquinone & Menaquinone)
  • Vitamin E (Tocopherols)



  • Definition of Antivitamin :


Antivitamins are the Organic compounds that have the same chemical composition as some vitamins, but counteract the essential effects of vitamins or prevents a vitamin from exerting it's typical biological effects or decrease the metabolic action of a vitamin.
For example,

  1. Ascorbic acid oxidase, an enzyme found in fruits and vegetables, has antivitamine properties and can oxidize ascorbic acid (Vitamin C). Hence, fresh juices lose 50% of the vitamin in less than 1 h.R
  2. Raw fish contains thiaminase, which has antivitamin properties and destroys the vitamin.
  3. It is also known that tannins found in plants destroy Thiamin. 
  4. Avidin, a heat-sensitive compound found in egg white also an antivitamin and forms a complex with biotin.

  • Definition of Provitamin : 

A provitamin is a substance that are inactive in pro form and activate once they are inside the body and it may be converted to a vitamin within the body under some organisms.
For example,

  1. β-Caroten is a pro-vitamin of vitamin A (retinal) . Two molecules of beta-carotene is required to form one molecule of retinal
  2. Ergosterol is a provitamin of Vitamin D. In exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light, it causes a chemical reaction that produces vitamin D. 
  3. Menadione is a synthetic provitamin of Vitamin K.



Sunday, April 5, 2020

Maurya Empire : Chandragupta Maurya, Bindusara, Ashoka

Maurya Empire : Chandragupta Maurya, Bindusara, Ashoka
Maurya Empire : Chandragupta Maurya, Bindusara, Ashoka



Question No. 01. Who was the founder of the Maurya Empire?

Answer : Chandragupta Maurya (322 BC - 298 BC), assisted by Kautilya overthrew Dhanananda and established Maurya Empire in 322 BC.

Question No. 02. Who was the Prime Minister of Chandragupta Maurya?

Answer : Kautilya (or Chanakya or Vishnugupta) was the Prime Minister of Chandragupta Maurya.

Question No. 03. What are the main historical sources of information about Maurya Empire?

Answer : The main sources of information about Maurya Empire are –

  • The book 'Arthashashtra' written by Kautilya or Chanakya.
  • Different Buddhist Literatures.
  • The book 'Mudrarakshasa' of Vishakhadatta.
  • The book 'Indica' of Megasthenese.
  • Various Edicts of Maurya Age.
  • Puranas & etc.

Question No. 04. Who was called as Sandrocottus/Androcottus by Greek scholars?

Answer : Chandragupta Maurya was called as Sandracottus or Androcottus by Greek scholars.

Question No. 05. Where was the capital of Chandragupta Maurya?

Answer : The capital of Chandragupta Maurya was at Pataliputra.

Question No. 06. Which Indian king defeated Selucus Nikator, the general of Alexander?

Answer : Chandragupta Maurya defeated Selucus Nikator, the general of Alexander in 305 BC. There was a matrimonial alliance between them and also Seleucus surrendered a vast territory in return for 500 elephants.

Question No. 07. Who was the Greek Ambassador to the court of Chandragupta Maurya?

Answer : Magasthenese was the Greek Ambassador to the court of Chandragupta Maurya.

Question No. 08. Who sent Magasthenese as Ambassador to the court of Chandragupta Maurya?

Answer : Selucus Nikator, the general of Alexander sent the Greek scholar Magasthenese as his Ambassador to the court of Chandragupta Maurya.

Question No. 09. Which religion was embraced by Chandragupta Maurya?

Answer : Chandragupta Maurya embraced Jainism.

Read more about : Jainism and Vardhaman Mahavira

Question No. 10. Which Jain scholar influenced Chandragupta Maurya?

Answer : Chandragupta Maurya was influenced by the Jain scholar Bhadrabahu.

Question No. 11. Where and how did Chandragupta Maurya die?

Answer : Chandragupta Maurya died of slow starvation (salekhna) at Chndragiri Hill, Sravanbelagola.

Question No. 12. Who was the first Indian ruler to unite the whole North India?

Answer : Chandragupta Maurya was the first Indian ruler to unite the whole North India.

Question No. 13. Which Maurya ruler constructed a thousand-mile-long highway connecting Pataliputra in Bihar to Taxila in the north-west India?

Answer : Chandragupta Maurya constructed a thousand-mile-long highway connecting Pataliputra in Bihar to Taxila in the north-west of India.

Question No. 14. Which were the other names of Kautilya mentioned in History?

Answer : The other names of Kautilya were Chanakya and Vishnugupta.

Question No. 15. Who wrote the book 'Arthashashtra' ?

Answer : The book 'Arthashashtra' was written by Kautilya (or Chanakya or Vishnugupta).

Question No. 16. Who wrote the book 'Mudrarakshasa'?

Answer : The book 'Mudrarakshasa' was written by Vishakhadatta' in Sanskrit.

Question No. 17. Who wrote the book 'Indica'?

Answer : Magasthenese wrote the book 'Indica' about socio-economic and administrative structure of Ancient India under Maurya rulers.

Question No. 18. Who was the successor of Chandragupta Maurya?

Answer : The successor of Chandragupta Maurya was his son, Bindusara (298 BC - 273 BC).

Question No. 19. During the reign of which Maurya ruler, 'Taxila revolt'?

Answer : The 'Taxila revolt' or Taxila uprising was originated during the reign of Maurya Emperor Bindusara. Bindusara send his son Ashoka to control that uprising.

Question No. 20. Which Maurya Emperor was called as Amitro Chates by Greeks (Magasthenese) ?

Answer : Bindusara was called as Amitra Chates by Greeks.

Question No. 21. What were the other names of Maurya Emperor Bindusara mentioned in different historical texts?

Answer : The other names of Bindusara mentioned in historical texts as follows :
  • Amitro Chates - Greeks (Magasthenese)
  • Amitroghata i.e. slayer of foes - Patanjali
  • Vindupala - Chinese texts.
  • Sinhasena - Jain texts
  • Bhadrasara - Yayu Purana.

Question No. 22. Who sent Deimachus as Ambassador to the court of Bindusara?

Answer : Antichus I , the Selucid king of Syria, sent Deimachus as his ambassador to the court of Bindusara.

Question No. 23. Who sent 'Dionysius' as his ambassador to the court of Bindusara?

Answer : Ptoleny Philladelphus of Egypt sent Dionysius as his ambassador to the court of Bindusara.

Question No. 24. Who was employed as Governor / Viceroy of Taxila and Ujjain by Bindusara?

Answer : The son of Bindusara, Ashoka Maurya was the Governor / Viceroy of Tahola and Ujjain.

Question No. 25. Who was the successor of Bindusara?

Answer : Ashoka Maurya was the successor of Bindusara.

Question No. 26. Who included Afganistan and Baluchistan into Maurya Empire?

Answer : The greatest Maurya ruler, Ashoka Maurya included Afganistan and Baluchistan into Maurya Empire.

Question No. 27. When Kalinga War was faught?

Answer : Maurya Emperor Ashoka faught Kalinga War in 261 BC in the 9th year of his rule.

Question No. 28. What is considered as the turning point of the life of Ashoka and Maurya dynasty?

Answer : The Kalinga War (261 BC) of Ashoka is considered as the turning point of the life of Ashoka and Maurya dynasty.

Question No. 29. Who led the army of Kalinga against Ashoka in Kalinga War in 261 BC?

Answer : The army of Kalinga was led by Raja Anantha Padmanabha against the Mauryan army.

Question No. 30. Which religion was embraced by Ashoka, after the Kalinga War?

Answer : After the Kalinga War, Maurya ruler Ashoka embraced Buddhism.

Read about Buddhism and Gautam Buddha : Click here.

Question No. 31. Which Buddhist monk influenced Ashoka?

Answer : Buddhist monk, Upagupta influenced the Maurya Emperor Ashoka about Buddhism.

Question No. 32. Where did Ashoka send his son and daughter as Buddhist missionaries?

Answer : Ashoka Maurya sent his son Mahendra and his daughter Sanghamitra to Ceylon (Sri Lanka) as Buddhist missionaries with a sapling of original pipul tree.

Question No. 33. Who were Dhamma Mahamatras?

Answer : Dhamma Mahamatras were the officers of righteousness appointed by Maurya Emperor Ashoka to spread the message of Dhamma (righteousness).

Question No. 34. Where was the Third Buddhist Council held under the patronage of Maurya Emperor Ashoka?

Answer : The Third Buddhist Council was held under the patronage of Maurya Emperor Ashoka at Pataliputra in 250 BC.

Read about Buddhist Councils : Click here.

Question No. 35. Who was the successor of Maurya Emperor Ashoka?

Answer : Kunal was the successor of Maurya Emperor Ashoka.

Question No. 36. Which Emperor of ancient India has been referred as 'Devanampriya' and 'Priyadarsi'?

Answer : Maurya Emperor Ashoka has been referred as 'Devanampriya' (the beloved of the Gods) and 'Priyadarsi' (one who regards everyone amiably).

Question No. 37. Who was the last Maurya ruler?

Answer : Brihadratha was the last Maurya ruler who was assassinated in 184 BC by his Brahmin Commander-in-chief, Pushyamitra shunga, who established the Shunga dynasty.

Question No. 38. What was the name of currency used in Maurya age?

Answer : The name of currency used in Maurya age was 'Pana'.

Question No. 39. What was the educational hub in Maurya Age?

Answer : Taxila was considered as the educational hub of Maurya age.

Question No. 40. In which language was the rock edicts of Ashoka written?

Answer : The rock edicts of Ashoka was written in Prakrit language.






Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Questions and Answers on Magadha Empire : Shishunaga dynasty and Nanda Dynasty (Shishunga, Kalashoka, Mahapadmananda, Dhanananda)

Questions and Answers on Magadha Empire : Shishunaga dynasty and Nanda Dynasty (Shishunga, Kalashoka, Mahapadmananda, Dhanananda)
Questions and Answers on Magadha Empire : Shishunaga dynasty and Nanda Dynasty (Shishunga, Kalashoka, Mahapadmananda, Dhanananda)


Question No. 01. Who was the founder of Shishunaga dynasty?

Answer : Shishunaga, formerly an Amatya (Minister) of king Naga-dashak of Magadha Empire under Haryanka dynasty, was the founder of the Shishunaga dynasty in Magadha.

Question No. 02. Which Magadha Emperor destroyed the Pradyota dynasty of Avanti and ended the Hundred-year old rivalry between two states?

Answer : Magadha Emperor Shishunaga destroyed the Pradyota dynasty of Avanti and ended the Hundred-year old rivalry between two states.

Question No. 03. Where did the capital of Magadha shift temporarily during the reign of Shishunaga?

Answer : Shishunaga

Question No. 04. Who was the successor of Shishunaga?

Answer : Kalashoka (Kakavarin) was the successor of Shishunaga.

Question No. 05. Which Magadha Emperor convened the second Buddhist Council in 383 BC?

Answer : Kalashoka convened the second Buddhist Council in 383 BC.

Question No. 06. During the reign of Kalashoka, where was the second Buddhist Council held?

Answer : During the reign of Kalashoka, the second Buddhist Council was held at Vaishali.

Question No. 07. Who was the president of second Buddhist Council?

Answer : Sabakami was the president of second Buddhist Council.

Question No. 08. Who shifted his capital from Vaishali to Pataliputra?

Answer : Kalashoka shifted his capital from Vaishali to Pataliputra.

Question No. 09. Who was the last king of Shishunaga dynasty?

Answer : The last king of the 'Shishunaga dynasty' was Nandi Bardhan (According to another opinion, 'Mahanandin'.)

Question No. 10. Which dynasty of Magadha is considered to be the first non-kshatriya dynasty?

Answer : Nanda dynasty is considered to be the first non-kshatriya dynasty of Magadha.

Question No. 11. Who established Nanda dynasty in Magadha?

Answer : Mahapadmananda was the founder of Nanda dynasty in Magadha.

Question No. 12. Who is described as 'the first empire builder of Indian History'?

Answer : Mahapadmananda is described as 'the first empire builder of Indian History'.

Question No. 13. Who is called as 'First Historical Emperor of India'?

Answer : Mahapadmananda is called as 'First Historical Emperor of India'.

Question No. 14. Who killed the Nandi Barman and ended the Shishunaga dynasty?

Answer : Mahapadmananda killed Nandi Bardhan of Shishunaga dynasty.

Question No. 15. Which Magadha ruler is known as 'Ekrat'?

Answer : Nanda ruler Mahapadmananda is known as 'Ekrat'.

Question No. 16. Who was the successor of Mahapadmananda?

Answer : Mahapadmananda was succeeded by his eight sons, last one being Dhanananda.

Question No. 17. In Puranas, who was described as 'Sarvakashtriyantaka'?

Answer : In puranas, Mahapadmananda was described as 'Sarvakashtriyantaka' or the destroyer of all the Kshatriyas.

Question No. 18. Who was the first shudra king of Magadha?

Answer : Mahapadmananda.

Question No. 19. What was the capital of Mahapadmananda?

Answer : The capital of Magadha during the reign of Mahapadmananda was Pataliputra (Patna, Bihar).

Question No. 20. Who was the last Nanda ruler of Magadha Empire?

Answer : Dhanananda was the last Nanda ruler of Magadha Empire.

Question No. 21. During Alexander's invasion, who was the ruler of Magadha Empire?

Answer : Dhanananda was the ruler of Magadha Empire during Alexander's invansion in North-Western India.

Question No. 22. Who is referred to as 'Agrammes' or 'Xan-drames' in the Gerek texts?

Answer : Dhanananda is referred to as 'Agrammes' or 'Xan-drames' in the Greek texts.

Question No. 23. Who killed Dhanananda and overthrew Nanda dynasty?

Answer : Chandragupta Maurya killed Dhnananda and overthrew Nanda dynasty.


Related Post : Maganda Empire : Haryanka Dynasty (Bimbisara, Ajatashatru, Udayin)