Micronutrients Matter: The Importance of Vitamins and Minerals

Vitamins and minerals-digest the information

What are these vitamins and minerals?

Vitamins and minerals are requisite micronutrients, needed in small quantities to perform various roles when ingested and absorbed into the human system—they perform medicinal functions. It’s largely because of them, we say “foods are medicines that treat and prevent diseases.” How actually? This article enumerates the major immune-advocating vitamins.

However, individuals should know that a slight inadequacy or overdose of these nutrients can cause their deficiency or toxicity—the same as with the drugs, our physicians prescribe to us. Vitamins have their recommended intake levels and, when eaten in large amounts, are likely to cause adverse effects.

If we want to improve our nutrition and overall health, we must watch both macronutrients and micronutrients on our plates.


The important micronutrients listed below have a big impact on our bodies.

• Vitamin B-complex is required for nerve function and energy. And We can get them from cereals and meat.

• Immune boosters: vitamins C, D, A, and zinc.

• We need iron to increase hemoglobin levels in our red blood cells to transport oxygen. And we get non-heme iron from green leafy vegetables and both non-heme and heme sources from animal products.

What are heme and non-heme irons?

Heme vs. Non-heme iron

Since I mentioned this, I would like you to know their difference. So, heme and non-heme iron are two different irons found in food. They derive heme iron from hemoglobin, a protein found in red blood cells, while non-heme iron is not bound to hemoglobin, and we get in both plant and animal foods.

Here are some of the key differences between heme and non-heme iron:

Absorption: The body absorbs Heme iron more efficiently than non-heme iron. In fact, researchers estimate that the body absorbs heme iron up to 25% better than non-heme iron.

Sources: we find Heme iron only in animal foods such as meat, poultry, and fish. We can find Non-heme iron in both plant and animal foods, including beans, lentils, spinach, tofu, and fortified breakfast cereals.

Interaction with other nutrients: Heme iron does not interact with other nutrients in the same way that non-heme iron does. For example, phytate affects non-heme iron and other compounds found in plant foods that can reduce its absorption. However, these compounds can’t impact heme iron.

Health effects: high intake of heme iron has been associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, while high intake of non-heme iron has not been shown to have the same effect.

Recommended intake: Because someone absorb more efficiently heme iron, the recommended intake of iron is higher for vegetarians and vegans, who rely solely on non-heme iron sources.
The recommended daily intake of iron for adult men and postmenopausal women is 8 milligrams of non-heme iron and 18 milligrams of heme iron, while premenopausal women need 18 milligrams of non-heme iron and 8 milligrams of heme iron per day.

In summary
Heme and non-heme iron differ in their absorption, sources, interactions with other nutrients, health effects, and recommended intake. While we find heme iron only in animal foods and our bodies absorb more efficiently, in other ways, we find non-heme iron in both plant and animal foods and is affected by other compounds in food that can reduce its absorption.

• Likewise, get vitamin C and A by eating vegetables and fruits; value varieties on your menu to get them every day. Since the body doesn't store vitamins like C or can’t make them by itself, you can consider getting them from the diet.

• We get zinc from nut and meat sources.

Furthermore, we get vitamin D naturally from sunlight, fortified cooking oil, and dairy products such as yogurt.

The nutrients we feed on define our nutritional status. Our failure to pay attention to the nutrients we ingest can lead to malnutrition, compromising our health.

Besides consuming macronutrient-rich foods, including carbohydrates and proteins for energy generation and body development, the human body requires micronutrients too: vitamins and minerals for immunity, nervous system function, bone development, and even human fertility improvement.

Most people understand macronutrients' importance compared to the nutrients required in small amounts. They always concentrate their knowledge on carbohydrates and proteins. Since individuals are looking at how to gain or lose weight and increase energy, it's good you are in this nutrition zone to learn why we require micronutrients like we do in macronutrients.

Why do you need to concentrate on micronutrient intake?

Humans also need to focus on vitamins and minerals to maintain general robustness and prevent malnutrition. Supplementation is required for those who cannot meet their dietary requirements while in a deficit.

Only, we do supplementation of these micronutrients if prescribed. Therefore, health experts say that individuals should consume a variety of foods, including fruits and vegetables, to get all the required nutrients their bodies require in a hastily manner.

Aside from people's understanding of these micronutrients, they need tips on how to maintain accurate levels while avoiding deficits or lethality.

Therefore, let's monitor how individuals can increase or ensure the right vitamin and nutrient intake.

Tips to Increase the Right Vitamin and Mineral Intake

Consume in adherence to the RDA.

Knowing how much of each micronutrient to consume will be critical in avoiding toxicity, especially at high doses. Even though they are required in small amounts, overdosing on fat-soluble vitamins (A, K, E, and D) is likely. Various ailments that can be harmful accompany toxicity.


I recommend supplementation with iron and iodine for those who can't meet their needs from dietary ingestion or for those vulnerable to micronutrient deficiency—especially mothers of childbearing age.

Visit your dietitian or doctor for questions.

Visits should not only be done when you have a deficiency. Nutritional counseling is vital at all stages. Get in touch with your health expert and get content with nourishing tips.

Your dietitian will help you understand the various concepts in nutrient-nutrient and drug-nutrient interaction if you are on medication to help you cope with nutrient absorption without interference or lowering bioavailability.

Cooking and food preparation methods

Good cooking and food preparation methods are essential in preserving nutrients and ensuring that the heat doesn’t destroy them. Be careful of cooking methods, particularly those entailing thorough boiling and dry heat methods such as roasting, which can interfere with vitamins, especially B vitamins.

Consume a variety of foods.

 In all food groups, the variety of foods includes cereals, pulses, fruits, and vegetables. This provides adequacy and balance for these micronutrients. Consumption of one beloved food will prevent one from getting all the nutrients.

Consume fortified foods.

In consumption of fortified foods, such as iodized salt, bread containing B vitamins, milk fortified with D vitamins, and some fruit juices containing calcium, we add it to these fortified foods. I have shown that these increase micronutrient intake even if the nutrients, like in bread baking, get destroyed.

Include vegetable salads on your menu.

Vegetable salads do the following for your body:

They detoxify the body—they help remove toxins from your body.

They improve metabolism.

Likewise, they contain fiber and micronutrients (vitamins).

When making vegetable and fruit salads, consider different plates or bowls.

These vegetables and natural spices are used to make salads: cucumbers, carrots, cauliflower, tomatoes, onions, ginger, and garlic.


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