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Though these vitamins are also found in many animal and other foodstuffs, they are deliberately omitted in the list below because a student of yoga needs knowledge of pure nontoxic foods which are optimal for the development of a strong mind and body.

Vitamin A

Physical Properties: It is not effected by dilute alkalies and acids, stable to heat with no loss of activity even at 200 degrees F. It is soluble in fats and insoluble in water. It is stored to some extent in the subcutaneous fatty tissues, the liver, and kidney. The bodies supply should be augmented by definite daily amounts. The body uses vitamin A best in conjunction with vitamin D and should be taken in a 7 to 1 proportion.

Physical Effects: It is good for the skin, keeping it moist and elastic. It helps the body to resist urinary and respiratory tract infection. It is good for vision and aids in the normal growth of children. It increases resistance to coughs and colds.

Lack Of This Vitamin: May cause dry scaly skin, low resistance to infection, poor tooth formation, formation of gall and kidney stones, sinus troubles, poor digestion, ear abscesses, night blindness.

Food Sources: Celery, Carrots Cabbage, Asparagus, Dandelion, Lettuce, Endive, Orange, Turnip Leaf, Tomato, Prune, Parsley, Spinach, Watercress.

Vitamin B1

Physical Properties: It is destroyed by alkalies and sulphites but not affected by dilute acids. It is soluble in water and not in oil. It may be obtained from rice polishing. It is unstable to ultraviolet irradiation. Boiling in slightly acid solution may partially destroy this vitamin, while heating in alkaline solution will result in complete loss. Pasteurization results in partial destruction and usual cooking processes may destroy this vitamin completely. It is stored in small amounts in the liver and so must be supplemented daily. When carbohydrates are increased in the diet intake of B1 must also increase.

Physical Effects: Stimulates the appetite, aids digestion and the absorption of food, promotes growth in children, increases resistance to infection, essential for the proper functioning of the nerve tissue. Age, fever, exercise, weight gain all increase the need for this vitamin.

Lack Of This Vitamin: May cause slower heartbeat, poor appetite, intestinal and gastric disorders, nervousness, poor lactation in nursing women, diminished peristalsis, enlargement of the adrenals and pancreas, nerve degeneration and beriberi ( a disease of the peripheral nerves)

Food Sources: Pineapple, Asparagus, Cabbage, Carrot, Celery, Grapefruit, Coconut, Lemon, Parsley, Pomegranate, Radish, Watercress, Turnip Leaf.

Vitamin B2

Physical Properties: It is not affected by diluted acid or air, It is stable in heat but are completely destroyed in alkalies. It is soluble in water. It is readily stored in the body in greater amounts than B1. It is destroyed when the consumption of minerals and fats is increased.

Physical Effects: Good for the skin, vision and for the healthy functioning of gastrointestinal tract. Aids in the assimilation of iron and aids in proteins metabolism.

Lack Of This Vitamin: May Retard growth in children, lack of stamina and vitality, digestive disturbances, cataract, loss of hair, reduced tissue respiration or exchange of gases between the tissues and the blood, tongue ulceration.

Food Sources: Grapefruit, Apple, Apricot, Cabbage, Carrot, Coconut, Dandelion, Prune, Spinach, Turnip Leaf, Watercress.

Vitamin C

Physical Properties: It is less affected by dilute acids than alkalies. It is stable in heat but in the presence of oxygen. It is soluble on water and insoluble in oils. Steam cooking causes less loss than ordinary cooking methods which may destroy it entirely. It is not affected by cold storage if air is absent. Dried fruits are low in this vitamin unless dried in a vacuum. Though it is stored in the small amounts in the liver, intestinal walls, and the adrenal cortex, it should be replenished every day. Warning: Copper cooking vessels can cause serious loss of this important vitamin.

Physical Effects: It promotes fine bone and tooth formation, increases resistance to infection and bacterial toxins, keeps the blood vessels healthy. It is a distributor and diffuser of calcium to the tissues from the blood.

Lack Of This Vitamin: May cause rapid heartbeat and respiration, shortness of breath, general weakness, tendency toward disease of the heart and blood vessels, headache, tooth decay, tender joints, peptic and duodenal ulcers, impaired adrenal function, scurvy, difficulty in knitting broken bones.

Food Sources: Cabbage, Cucumber, Grapefruit, Orange, Lemon, Lime, Papaya, Parsley, Pineapple, Radish, Potato Skins, Spinach, Tomato, Turnip, Carrot, Rhubarb, watercress.

Vitamin D

Physical Properties: It is not affected by by dilute acids, alkalies or air. it is insoluble in water but soluble in fats and oils. Vitamin D2 is stored in the skin as ergosteral, which is converted to vitamin D2 by sunshine or ultraviolet irradiation.

Physical Effects: It controls the calcium content in the blood and so governs muscular action and controls or regulates the the absorption and metabolism of calcium and phosphorous, the bone forming elements.

Lack Of This Vitamin:This vitamin has deleterious effects both when it is lacking in the diet and when it is there in excess. An excessive amount of this vitamin may result in general depression, abnormal calcium deposits in the blood vessel walls, liver, lungs, kidneys, and stomach. It may also lead to diarrhea and have other severe toxic effects. When this vitamin is lacking in the diet it may result in rickets and fragile bones, bowed legs, enlargement of the elbows and wrists joints, also muscle twitching and muscle cramps.

Food Sources: This vitamin is NOT found in vegetables, fruits or cereals. Cod liver oil and fish is the best source for this vitamin as well as Sunshine. For vegetarians butter gives you a supply of this vitamin and there are many artificial sources such as cows milk and soy milk which are often supplemented with Vitamin D. Viosterol is activated ergosteral, and considered to be a source of Vitamin D but without Vitamin A, as is cod liver oil. A and D should be taken together if possible.

Vitamin E

Physical Properties: It is not affected by alkalies or acids, but it is destroyed by ozone or chlorine. It is soluble in oils but insoluble in water. Though stable to ordinary light ultraviolet light will gradually destroy it. It is not affected by sterilizing, drying or cooking. It is stored in the muscles and fat but is rapidly depleted and must therefore be renewed daily in the diet.

Physical Effects: Helps in the overall health of the sexual organs, is good for the skin and helps promote its healing. Is good for the heart and lungs.

Lack Of This Vitamin: May cause sterility in both sexes, loss of hair, and miscarriage.

Food Sources: Wheat germ, Celery, Lettuce or other Green Leafy Vegetables, Parsley, Spinach,Turnip leaf, Watercress.

Written by AVA

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