Vitamins are taken by millions of people on a daily basis as a preventive health measure. All these substances have one thing in common; Boosting and/or regulating your immune system function in the hopes of maintaining your health.
The vitamins needed by humans are divided into two categories:
(1) Water-soluble vitamins (the B vitamins and vitamin C
(2) Fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, and K).
The water-soluble vitamins are absorbed by the intestine and carried by the circulatory system to the specific tissues where they will be put into use. The B vitamins act as coenzymes, compounds that unite with a protein component called an apoenzyme to form an active enzyme.
The enzyme then acts as a catalyst in the chemical reactions that transfer energy from the basic food elements to the body. It is not known whether vitamin C acts as a coenzyme. Water-soluble vitamins are not stored in the body in appreciable amounts, a daily supply is essential to prevent depletion.
In the 18th century it was demonstrated that the addition of citrus fruits to the diet would prevent scurvy. In the 19th century it was shown that substituting unpolished for polished rice in a rice-based diet would prevent the development of beriberi.
In 1906 the British biochemist Frederick Hopkins demonstrated that foods contained necessary growth factors in addition to proteins, carbohydrates, fats, minerals, and water.
Polish chemist Casimir Funk discovered that the anti-beriberi substance in unpolished rice was an amine (a type of nitrogen-containing compound). Funk proposed that it be named vitamine--for "vital amine." This term soon came to be applied to the accessory factors in general. It was later discovered that many vitamins did not contain amines at all. Because of its widespread use, Funk's term continued to be applied, but the final letter e was dropped.
During the early 1900s, through experiments in which animals were deprived of certain types of foods, scientists succeeded in isolating and identifying the various vitamins recognized today.
Vitamins are one of the most sought after forms of dietary supplements.Today's dietary supplement field is full of deceptive marketing practices. Companies engage in this type of practice to entice you into purchasing their products. This can lead to safety issues for you, your family members or friend's. The present American diet is lacking in many areas. Scientific studies have proven this correct. A large majority of Americans are overweight and the foods that we eat are not providing us the proper nutrition. That's why over 65% of the US population use some form of dietary supplement. However, it's what we don't know that can hurt us.
Who Manufactures Most Vitamins...
Tthe truth has been hidden from us.
Are you aware that over 90% of all the vitamins and minerals available in the vast majority of supplements come from the same handful of Mega Drug companies?
1. Pfizer Chemicals Division.
2. Fine Chemicals Division: Henkel Corporation.
3. Takeda USA: Takeda Chemical Industries, LTD.
4. Roche Chemical Division: Hoffman LaRoche.
5. Archer Daniels Midland Corporation.
6. Chemicals Division: BASF Wyandotte Corp.
7. Eastman Chemical Company
These companies isolate the vitamins and recreate them in huge quantities and sell them to vitamin manufacturers. These companies do not supply the nutrients in a food source that the body recognizes. Many of the mineral supplements created by these companies are dug up in mines, in the form of rocks, then they are crushed into a fine powder. Some maybe subjected to chemical seperation. This is what is used in a majority of supplements and fortified foods, like Orange Juice and breakfast cereal.
The synthetic "isolate" chemicals are really produced to imitate the original vitamins in food. These chemicals are really precursors to the vitamins. Synthetic chemicals are not recognized by the body as food, thus they are not absorbed properly and are poorly utilized. I'm sure you have come across articles about how a vast majority of vitamin consumers are flushing most of them down the drain. This "absorption" marketing approach is being used by the liquid vitamin marketers to sell their products, however crushed up precursors in water are still crushed up precursors.
The body recognizes nutrients in a food form and can efficiently absorb nutrients from whole food. However, research has shown the body has difficulty in recognizing and processing the chemically isolated forms. The absorption and retension rate is greatly reduced. The absorption factor for most chemical isolates is in the area of 5% and very rarely exceeds 20%. This may be the reason that many scientists and doctors have suggested that taking large amounts of supplements is only useful for producing expensive urine.
How to Tell Real from Fake Vitamins
Need a telltale sign that a vitamin is a synthetic? Drop it in a glass of water and see what happens. Does it start to dissolve? Does it turn gooey first? This is just some of the many signs you can use to determine if a vitamin is synthetic. However, some synthetics do gel when subjected to moisture.
The best source of any vitamin is, of course are foods. Milk, eggs, butter and meats of every kind, but especially the organ meats such as liver are high in natural vitamins. Fresh fruits and vegetables are also a very good source. Good too are fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds and unprocessed grains. Relatively few of us get our foods fresh and unadulterated (no pesticides, hormos, genetically alteration, etc...) practically all of us need the boost of supplements.
Until recently the prevailing thought in science was that vitamins were "mysteriously" detached from their food proteins in the digestive system and were then somehow "re-attached" to proteins after absorption. Common sense and recent scientific discoveries have proven this incorrect. Vitamins and minerals must include all the elements found in their food based vitamins counterparts to be truly effective. These other elements are called cofactors and chaperones. Each vitamin and each mineral all have different cofactors and chaperones. No two are the same.
Cofactor is a general term to describe any accessory molecule, from minerals of relatively low molecular weight to larger organic molecules. Examples include calcium and zinc and larger molecules such as heme and biotin.
Chaperones, by definition are a group of unrelated proteins that all share the functional property of assisting the non-covalent assembly and/or disassembly of protein-containing structures in vivo.