by Rita Jamshed Kapadia
This article was first published in the FEZANA Journal, Winter Issue 2016
So many pleasures await you – there is a certain joy to retiring in North America. One of them is of course the joy of eating good food with activities that keep the body and spirit well-nourished for example Travel, Gardening and Exercise.
Good food is made of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. Some of them are:
- Vitamin A (a.k.a. pre-formed Retinol;Beta-Carotene)
What it’s good for: Promotes growth and repair of body tissue, healthy eyes, good night vision and a strong immune system.
Where you get it: Liver and fish oils, whole and fortified milk and eggs. Carrots, sweet potatoes, spinach and other leafy green veggies, yellow squash, peaches and apricots provide Beta and other carotenes.
Watch out: Vitamin A can be toxic in large doses, and when taken during pregnancy can cause birth defects. Your body stores excess vitamin A so don’t exceed the RDA.
- Vitamin B-1 (a.k.a. Thiamine)
What it’s good
for: Helps convert food into energy, nerve functions, growth and muscle tone.
Where you get it: Wheat germ, pork, whole and enriched grains, dried beans, seeds, and nuts.
- Vitamin B-2 ( a.k.a. Riboflavin)
What it’s good for: Releases energy, keeps red blood cells healthy, makes hormones.
Where you get it: Dairy products, meats, poultry, whole and enriched grains, and green vegetables such as broccoli, turnip greens, asparagus, and spinach.
Tidbit: High doses of B-2 may help prevent migraine headaches.
- Vitamin B-3 (a.k.a Niacin)
What it’s good for: Releases energy, important for a healthy digestive system, blood circulation, nerve function, appetite.
Where you get it: Poultry, fish, whole and enriched grains, dried beans, and peas.
- Vitamin B-5 (a.k.a Pantothenic Acid)
What it’s good for: Converts food into energy, necessary to make important hormones, vitamin D, and red blood cells.
Where you get it: Found in almost all foods.
- Vitamin B-6 (a.k.a Pyridoxine)
What it’s good for: Helps convert food into energy, keeps red blood cells healthy, makes antibodies, maintains nerve function, enhances the immune system, helps prevent heart disease.Where you get it:Poultry, fish, pork, eggs, and whole grains.
Tidbit: Small doses of B-6 may help alleviate morning sickness. Check with your doctor.
Watch Out: B-6 in high doses can cause balance difficulties, nerve injury.
- Vitamin B-12 (a.k.a Cobalamin)
What it’s good for: Releases energy from food, keeps red blood cells healthy, helps maintain the nervous system, boosts the immune system, helps prevent heart disease.
Where you get it: Dairy products, lean beef, fish, poultry, and eggs.
- Vitamin D
What it’s good for: Calcium and phosphorus metabolism, aids bone growth and integrity, promotes strong teeth.
Where you get it: Fortified milk, egg yolks and fatty fish, like herring, kipper and mackerel.
- Vitamin E
What it’s good for: Antioxidant powers protect cell membranes, essential for red blood cells, aids cellular respiration and protects lung tissue from pollution.
Where you get it: Vegetable oils, wheat germ, green leafy vegetables, seeds, nuts, seafood, apples, carrots and celery.
Proanthocyanidins. Theseare powerful antioxidants that promote urinary tract health.
Where you get them: Cranberries. Recipe Pickled Cranberry Apple Sauce
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