Nutritional deficiencies can occur if you do not have adequate amounts of vitamins or minerals in the body. For example, scurvy is considered a nutritional deficiency of Vitamin C, and beri beri is a deficiency of Vitamin B. A registered dietitian can look at your nutritional intake and review if you may or may not need a vitamin or mineral supplement to help with a deficiency.
A Answers (2)
Amy Jamieson-Petonic, Nutrition & Dietetics, answered on behalf of Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
Nutrition is a science that examines the relationship between diet and health. Nutrition includes the foods that provide energy and health, including proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals and water. A nutritional deficiency is a state where an individual's intake of nutrients is insufficient for the body's normal functioning. The body's needs for nutrition change as it grows. So, for example, babies have different nutritional needs than a pregnant woman or an elderly person.
The body needs a regular intake of many nutrients such as protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals for the health of bones, nerves, organs, and other body functions. Proteins help build body tissue (such as muscle and organs), carbohydrates provide energy, and fats are a component of all cell membranes and are an important source of stored energy in the body.
Vitamins are important for the cellular functions of the body. They are chemical substances that help the body use energy, build proteins, make cells, and repair injuries. Vitamins are divided into two general categories: fat soluble and water soluble. The fat soluble vitamins are A, D, and E. Vitamin A is necessary for eyes, bones, and skin. Vitamin D is necessary to make bones and teeth, and it allows the body to use calcium from the diet. Vitamin E is important for the immune system and for the cardiovascular system.
The water soluble vitamins are vitamin C and the B vitamins. Vitamin C is important for fighting infection and for using the stored energy in the body. Vitamin C is generally found in citrus fruits and other vegetables like tomatoes and peppers. The B vitamins are important for building blood cells, nerve cells, and are vital for many of the body's chemical reactions. These are found in many meats and vegetables.
Minerals, such as calcium, iron, zinc, and magnesium, are also essential for health.
Deficiencies, excesses, and imbalances in the diet can produce negative impacts on health, which may lead to diseases such as cardiovascular disease, birth defects, diabetes, scurvy, obesity, seizures, or osteoporosis.
You should read product labels, and discuss all therapies with a qualified healthcare provider. Natural Standard information does not constitute medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.
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