One of the most important parts of staying healthy and improving your overall well-being is to make sure you’re getting enough vitamins. Vitamins are naturally found in foods like fruits, vegetables, meat, grains, and dairy, and provide what our bodies need to function properly. Each vitamin offers unique benefits that we reap when we eat the foods that contain them.

Increase Energy Levels

One of the most common causes of fatigue or lack of energy is due to inadequate nutrition. Vitamins B12 and vitamin D are known to increase energy levels and boost cognitive function, making it easy to stay productive throughout the day without suffering from a mid-afternoon slump. You can get B12 from fish, shellfish, and liver.

Protects Eye Health

Vitamin A protecting eye health and can reduce the risk of macular degeneration, which leads to age-related blindness. Vitamin A also helps to keep the eyes moist and can also slow the development of Stargardt’s disease. Good sources of vitamin A include liver, carrots, sweet potato, and kale.

Boosts the Immune System

One of the main benefits of vitamins is that they strengthen the immune system, which means that you won’t come down with colds or the flu as often. Beta-carotene (vitamin A) and vitamin D also have a significant impact on the immune system and can reduce mortality rates in young children by up to 24 percent. Fatty fish, cheese, and egg yolks are good sources of vitamin D.

Reduces the Risk of Cancer

Although the risk of cancer seems to have increased in recent decades, you can help guard against it by consuming certain vitamins that are effective at controlling malignant cells in the body. Retinoic acid (a metabolite of vitamin A) is proven to suppress different forms of cancer, which includes breast cancer, lung cancer, melanoma, and prostate cancer.

Strengthens the Bones

Osteoporosis is known to develop later on in life due to bone loss that can occur if the body doesn’t absorb enough calcium. You can strengthen your bones by increasing your intake of vitamin D and vitamin K to reduce the risk of fractures, as well as improve your body’s efficiency at calcium absorption. Good sources of vitamin K include collard greens, kale, parsley, broccoli, and brussels sprouts.

Improve Hair and Nails

Vitamin A, vitamin B, and biotin (vitamin B7) play a vital role in strengthening hair and nails. When you consume foods that are high in these vitamins, you'll notice that your nails won't break as easily and your hair will grow thicker, longer, and shinier. Vitamin B7 is found in high quantities in barley, corn, egg yolks, and milk.

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If you want to improve your health, paying attention to which vitamins (and how much) you’re getting on a regular basis is the first step. Perfectly planning your diet to get the exact vitamins you need can be difficult though, so taking a high quality daily multivitamin can help fill in the gaps. Remember, however, that no multivitamin can replace a balanced diet.

Author's Bio: 

Shae Holland is a copywriter with over 3 years of experience in the field. She believes strongly in maintaining a healthy home environment, and has been sugar-free for 6 months. If you’re interested in making a career out of nutrition, consider becoming a nurse nutrition practitioner.