Vitamins and minerals: What do you need to know?

You have probably heard many times about the importance of vitamins and minerals. But which vitamins and minerals are really important to help you feel better, fitter, or more beautiful? That's what we will cover in this blog, telling you everything you want and need to know about vitamins and minerals.

Let's start at the very beginning. There is a distinct difference between vitamins and minerals. Vitamins are organic, meaning they come from living organisms and are produced by certain animals or plants. Minerals, on the other hand, are inorganic, meaning they come from dead organisms and are absorbed by animals or plants from the earth, food, or water.


Table of Contents:

  • The importance of vitamins
  • Types of vitamins
  • The 5 most important vitamins according to Ergomax
  • The importance of minerals
  • Types of minerals
  • The 5 most important minerals according to Ergomax
  • Vitamin and mineral deficiencies and maximum intake


The importance of vitamins

Your body needs daily vitamins to function. Among other things, vitamins help produce hormones and enzymes, as well as maintain energy, resistance, and metabolism. In addition, vitamins are also very important for the proper functioning of our muscles. A number of vitamins cannot be produced by the body itself. Therefore, a healthy diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables is important. In fact, they are organic molecules produced by plants, bacteria, or animals. Vitamins are substances that cannot be synthesized.

An organism needs vitamins not as a source of energy, but as vital substances needed for various processes in the body. When our body lacks vitamins, deficiency symptoms occur. Vitamins influence the immune system and are essential for building cells, blood cells, bones, and teeth. For this reason, on the Ergomax website, you will find all the different types of vitamins that can support your health.


Types of vitamins

There are 13 different types of vitamins: four fat-soluble vitamins and nine water-soluble vitamins. The fat-soluble vitamins include Vitamin A, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, and Vitamin K. They are mainly found in the fats in foods and can be stored in our body tissues.

Water-soluble vitamins include: Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B3, Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B8, Vitamin B11, Vitamin B12 and Vitamin C. These water-soluble vitamins are found in the moisture of all types of food. Our body finds it difficult to store these water-soluble vitamins (with the exception of vitamin B12).

Therefore, excess of a certain type of vitamin is excreted by the body through urine. So most of the vitamins we need to take in with food, but two of them the body also makes itself. These are vitamin D (which we get from the influence of sunlight) and vitamin K (which we get from the bacteria in our intestines).


The 5 most important vitamins:

  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin B6
  • Vitamin B12


The 5 most important vitamins according to Ergomax

Vitamin C has an antioxidant function in the body and is needed for the formation of connective tissue, iron absorption, and the maintenance of the body's defenses. Vitamin C is found in fruits, vegetables, and potatoes, especially cabbage, citrus fruits, kiwis, berries, and strawberries.

Vitamin D (cholecalciferol) is needed to absorb calcium from food into the body. It is therefore important for building and maintaining strong bones and teeth. In addition, vitamin D plays a role in good muscle function and the immune system. Sunlight is the most important form of vitamin D.

Vitamin A (retinol) is important for normal growth, healthy skin, hair, and nails, and for the proper functioning of the eyes and immune system. Too much vitamin A can be harmful to children and pregnant women.

Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) is important for metabolism, especially for the breakdown and synthesis of amino acids. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. Vitamin B6 regulates the action of certain hormones and is needed for growth, blood formation, and proper functioning of the immune and nervous systems.

Vitamin B12 is needed for your blood and nerves. A deficiency of vitamin B12 can cause symptoms such as decreased feeling in your fingers and toes. If you have these symptoms or anemia, your primary care doctor can do a blood test. Too little vitamin B12 is usually due to a disease of the stomach or intestines.


The importance of minerals

Minerals, like vitamins, are nutrients found in small amounts in foods and beverages. Minerals are inorganic substances. Unlike vitamins, which are essential for metabolism and energy production, minerals are especially important for muscle and nerve function. They also contribute to good health and normal growth and development. Minerals are needed as building blocks for skeletal and body tissue repair.

The best-known minerals in our diet are calcium, sodium, magnesium, potassium, and phosphorus. They do not provide energy. Minerals that the body needs very little of are called trace minerals. An excess of certain minerals can have a harmful effect on health. In the Netherlands, on average, we consume too much sodium in the form of salt. We at Ergomax are aware of the importance of minerals and therefore offer you a wide range of different minerals on our website.


Types of minerals

Within the group of minerals, a distinction is made between minerals and trace elements. The difference between these two lies in the amount that our body needs from them. Minerals are the most important for humans. That is why we need more of them than trace elements.

Vital minerals are calcium, magnesium, sodium, potassium, chloride, and phosphorus. But the body also needs certain trace elements to function properly. For example, iron, iodine, chromium, zinc, copper, selenium, manganese, and molybdenum are essential for good health.


The 5 most important minerals:

  • Magnesium
  • Calcium
  • Phosphorus
  • Potassium
  • Sodium


The 5 most important minerals according to Ergomax

Magnesium is a mineral found, for example, in grain products, vegetables, nuts, and dairy products. Among other things, it is needed for the formation of bones and muscles and plays a role in the proper functioning of muscles and the transmission of nerve impulses. Magnesium helps in enzymatic reactions, the transmission of nerve impulses, protein synthesis, and support of heart function. Together with calcium, it also helps maintain healthy, supple, and strong muscles.

Calcium (lime) is a mineral found mainly in milk, dairy products, and cheese. It is also found in grain products such as whole-grain bread and in certain green vegetables such as kale and spinach. Calcium is needed for building and maintaining bones and teeth, among other things. It helps with blood clotting and hormone secretion.

Phosphorus (phosphate) is a mineral found in dairy products, fish, meat, legumes, and whole grain products, among others. Together with calcium, it gives strength to bones and teeth. Phosphorus also plays a role in the body's energy metabolism.

Potassium is a mineral that, together with chloride and sodium, participates in the regulation of fluid balance and blood pressure in the body. In this respect, potassium has a beneficial effect on blood pressure, as it counteracts the blood pressure-increasing effect of sodium.

In addition, potassium, together with sodium, ensures that nerve impulses are properly conducted and that muscles contract. Potassium is found in almost all foods. It is found mainly in vegetables, fruits, potatoes, meat, fish, and nuts, but also in dairy products and bread.

Sodium is a mineral that the body cannot produce itself and takes in through food. Together with chloride and potassium, sodium plays a role in regulating fluid balance and blood pressure, among other things. The main source of sodium is table salt.


Vitamin and mineral deficiencies and maximum intake

Mineral and vitamin deficiencies lead to adverse health effects. Typical symptoms are fatigue, difficulty concentrating, insomnia, lethargy, and muscle cramps.

A general calcium deficiency can cause the body to extract calcium from the bones. This can lead to osteoporosis or osteoporosis and/or bone fractures. This can lead to confusion, forgetfulness, muscle cramps, or muscle weakness.

A specific deficiency of vitamin B12 can cause anemia because the number of red blood cells decreases. It can also lead to muscle weakness, confusion, forgetfulness, increased irritability, etc. A specific

Iron deficiency quickly becomes noticeable through lack of energy, fatigue, headaches, dizziness, and difficulty concentrating. A severe iron deficiency can weaken your immunity and increase the risk of disease. Finally, a protein deficiency can lead to muscle loss.

For example, it can be difficult to get the recommended amount of protein in your diet every day. Supplementation may be necessary to achieve this goal. Below is a table of recommended daily doses for all vitamins and minerals. If you click on the table, the image will open clearly showing the daily recommended amounts.