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Vitamins
Facts

Vitamins Hang Out in Water and Fat

There are two types of vitamins: fat soluble and water soluble.

When you eat foods that contain fat-soluble vitamins, the vitamins are stored in the fat tissues in your body and in your liver. They wait around in your body fat until your body needs them.

Fat-soluble vitamins are happy to stay stored in your body for a long time. Then, when it’s time for them to be used, special carriers in your body take them to where they’re needed. Vitamins A, D, E, and K are all fat-soluble vitamins.

Water-soluble vitamins are different. These vitamins dissolve in water. When you eat foods that have water-soluble vitamins, the vitamins are not stored in your body. Instead, they travel through your bloodstream. Whatever your body doesn’t use comes out when you urinate (pee).

So water-soluble vitamins need to be replaced often because they don’t stick around! This crowd of vitamins includes vitamin C and the big group of B vitamins — B1 (thiamin), B2 (riboflavin), niacin, B6 (pyridoxine), folic acid, B12 (cobalamine), biotin, and pantothenic acid.

Vitamins Feed Your Needs

Your body is one powerful machine, capable of doing all sorts of things by itself. But when it comes to vitamins, it can use some help. That’s where food comes in. Your body is able to get the vitamins it needs from the foods you eat because different foods contain different vitamins. The key is to eat different foods to get an assortment of vitamins. Though some kids take a daily vitamin, most kids don’t need one if they’re eating a variety of healthy foods.

Now, let’s look more closely at vitamins — from A to K:

vitamin A

Vitamin A

This vitamin plays a really big part in eyesight. It’s great for night vision, like when you’re trick-or-treating on Halloween. Vitamin A helps you see in color, too, from the brightest yellow to the darkest purple. In addition, it helps your body fight infections by boosting your immune system.

Vitamin B

There’s more than one B vitamin. Here’s the list: B1, B2, B6, B12, niacin, folic acid, biotin, and pantothenic acid. Whew — that’s quite a group!
The B vitamins are important in metabolic (say: meh-tuh-BAH-lik) activity — this means that they help get energy from the food you eat and set it free when your body needs it. So the next time you’re running to third base, thank those B vitamins.
This group of vitamins also helps make red blood cells, which carry oxygen throughout your body. Every part of your body needs oxygen to work properly, so these B vitamins have a really important job.

vitamin b
vitamin C

Vitamin C

This vitamin is important for keeping body tissues, such as gums, bones, and blood vessels in good shape. Vitamin C is key if you get a cut because it helps you heal. It also helps the body absorb iron from food. Kids need iron to prevent anemia.

This vitamin may also help your body fight off infections. If you get a cold, for instance, vitamin C can help shorten the amount of time you are sick.

Vitamin D

No bones about it . . . vitamin D is the vitamin you need for strong bones! It’s also great for forming strong teeth. Vitamin D lends a hand to an important mineral — it helps your body absorb the calcium it needs. Vitamin D is made in the skin when exposed to sunlight.

vitamin d
vitamin e

Vitamin E

Everybody needs E. This hard-working vitamin protects your cells and tissues from damage. It is also important for the health of red blood cells.

Vitamin K

Everybody needs E. This hard-working vitamin protects your cells and tissues from damage. It is also important for the health of red blood cells.

vitamin k