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Vitamins – Scientific Name, Sources and Deficiencies

Vitamins are organic compounds that are required in small amounts with our regular diet in order to carry out certain biological functions and for the maintenance of our growth. Apart from the normal food that we take, our body requires a certain number of compounds in small amounts for the proper functioning and deficiency of these compounds may cause diseases. Vitamins – Scientific Name, Sources and Deficiencies are all discussed below.


Given below is the List of Vitamins – Scientific Name, Sources and Deficiencies :

Common NameScientific NameSymptoms of DeficiencyFood Sources
Vitamin A
(Fat-soluble)
Retinol, Retinoic acidOcular disturbances leading to lost of eye sight, growth retardation, dry skin, diarrhea, vulnerability to infectionGreen leafy vegetables, nuts, tomatoes, oranges, ripe yellow fruits, guava, milk, carrots, broccoli, watermelon.
Vitamin B1
(Water-soluble)
ThiamineImpairment of nerves and wasting of heart musclesFresh fruits, corn, cashew nuts, potatoes, sweet potatoes, peas, wheat, milk, dates, black beans, etc.
Vitamin B2
(Water-soluble)
RiboflavinInflammation of tongue, lips and skin; ocular problems and nervous symptomsBananas, grapes, mangoes, peas, pumpkin, dates, yoghurt, milk, mushrooms, popcorn, beef liver, etc.
Vitamin B3
(Water-soluble)
NiacinGastrointestinal, skin lesions, nervous symptomsMeat, eggs, fish, milk products, guava, mushroom, peanuts, cereals, green peas, etc.
Vitamin B5
(Water-soluble)
Pantothenic AcidGeneral weakness, gastrointestinal disturbance, fatigue, sleep disturbance, restlessness, nausea and nervous symptomsMeat, egg yolk, broccoli, peanuts, fish, chicken, milk, yoghurt, legumes, mushrooms, avocado, etc.
Vitamin B6
(Water-soluble)
Pyridoxine, Pyridoxal, PyridoxamineMental depression, confusion, dermatitis, anemiaPork, chicken, fish, bread, wholegrain cereals, eggs, vegetables, soya beans, etc.
Vitamin B7
(Water-soluble)
BiotinDermatitis, hair loss, conjunctivitis, neurological symptomsWalnuts, peanuts, cereals, milk, egg yolks, salmon, pork, mushroom, cauliflower, avocados, bananas, raspberries, etc.
Vitamin B9
(Water-soluble)
Folic Acid,
Folacin, Folate
Impaired formation of red blood cells, irritability, headache, palpitations, inflammation of mouth, neural tube defects in foetusCitrus fruits, green leafy vegetables, whole grains, legumes, beets, etc.
Vitamin B12
(Water-soluble)
Cobalamin, CyanocobalaminGastrointestinal disturbances, nervous symptoms, smoothness of the tongueFish, meat, poultry, eggs, milk, etc.
Vitamin C
(Water-soluble)
Ascorbic acidSwollen, bleeding gums, soreness or stiffness of joints, lower extremities, bleeding under the skin and in deep tissues, slow wound healing, anemiaFresh citrus fruits such as orange and grapefruit, broccoli, goat milk, black currant and chestnuts.
Vitamin D 
(Fat-soluble)
CalciferolDefective bone growth in children, soft bones in adultsFish, beef, cod liver oil, egg yolk, liver, chicken breast and cereals.
Vitamin E
(Fat-soluble)
Tocopherol, alpha-tocopherol, TocotrienolBreakdown of red blood cells, peripheral neuropathyPotatoes, pumpkin, guava, mango, milk, nuts and seeds.
Vitamin K
(Fat-soluble)
Phytonadione,
Menaquinone
Impaired clotting of the blood and internal bleedingTomatoes, broccoli, mangoes, grapes, chestnuts, cashew nuts, beef and lamb.
Vitamins are generally classified as water-soluble vitamins and fat-soluble vitamins:

Vitamins A, D, E and K are fat soluble and are insoluble in water. They are stored in liver and adipose tissues. Vitamin B and C are water soluble. They are not stored in the body (except vitamin B12). They are readily excreted out so have to be supplemented regularly in diet.

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