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Vitamin & Food Guide

Know your vitamins & minerals: A Guide to vitamins, how they work in the body; where they can be found; how much is needed to 'roughly' meet your recommended daily allowance (RDA), as this is disputed by nutritionist, health authorities, and Doctors, and some of the signs of deficiencies / overdose.

PLEASE NOTE: This information is not to be used for diagnosis or instead of consultation and support of a medical professional.  As with all things in life, take vitamins and minerals in balance – too much of one vitamin can have a negative effect.  For example, too much vitamin A may cause hair loss and bones becoming more prone to fracturing, and research has found that high intakes of Beta-Carotene can increase the risk of cancer. (Read more about Beta-carotene on the NHS website at - http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/vitamins-minerals/Pages/Other-vitamins-minerals.aspx#beta-carotene).  The most important thing to remember is - Healthy eating means varied and balanced meals, with exercise and minimal stress in our lives – living in equilibrium.

Know Your Vitamins A - K

The Nutrient

Body Benefits

Animal-Free/vegetable food sources (or supplements)

How much

do you need?

VITAMIN A

(also known as retinol).  

 

 

Beta-Carotene is also

converted to Vitamin A

in the body.    

 

Minimum intake of Vitamin A during pregnancy is advised.    

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN A:

 

  • Essential for cell renewal & repair.

  • Promotes the healthy production of new skin cells, tissues & membranes.

  • Important immune-booster

  • Supports the defense against UV damage to our skin

  • Helps to protect our eyes and vision

ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

Apricots, beet greens, broccoli, butternut squash, carrots, collard greens, kale, mango, pumpkin, red bell pepper, red pepper, romaine lettuce, spinach, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, turnip greens

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

According to the NHS,

the average adult needs:

 

Men- 0.7mg per day

 

Women  -0.6mg per day

VITAMIN B1 / THIAMINE

 

Research has shown that some patients who suffered mental health crisis / poor mental health, were found to be low on Vitamin B.              

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN B1 / THIAMINE:

 

  • Important for energy production

  • Works with other B-group vitamins to break down and release energy from food

  • Supports the healthy function of the nervous and digestive system

ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

Black beans, brussels sprouts, fresh fruit, fortified breakfast cereals (some), lentils, nuts (some), peas, sunflower seeds, wholegrain breads

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

According to the NHS,

the average adult needs:

 

Men- 1mg per day

 

Women  -0.8mg per day

VITAMIN B2 / RIBOFLAVIN

 

UV light can destroy riboflavin, so keep foods out of direct sunlight.          

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN B2 / RIBOFLAVIN:

 

  • Aids cell reproduction and growth

  • Helps the body to release energy from our food

  • Supports the health of skin, eyes and the nervous system

ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

Almonds, fortified breakfast cereals (some), mushrooms, rice, sesame seeds, spinach, sweet potatoes,  tempeh

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

According to the NHS,

the average adult needs:

 

Men- 1.3mg per day

 

Women  -1.1mg per day

VITAMIN B3 / NIACIN

 

You need niacin in your daily

diet, because it cannot be

stored in the body. Even a

slight deficiency of niacin can lead to irritability, poor concentration, anxiety, fatigue, restlessness, apathy,

and depression.        

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN B3 / NIACIN :

 

  • Essential for DNA repair

  • Helps to keep our skin and nervous system healthy

  • Supports keeping skin moisturized

  • Helps to release energy from the foods we eat

ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

Asparagus, avocado, mushrooms (grilled, Portobello), , peas (fresh, green), peanuts (oil roasted), sunflower seeds, wheat flour

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

According to the NHS,

the average adult needs:

 

Men- 17mg of niacin per day

 

Women  - 13mg of niacin per day

VITAMIN B5 /

PANTOTHENIC ACID

 

You need Pantothenic acid in your daily diet, because it

cannot be stored in the body.

Although deficiency is rare,

it is usually seen in the form

of muscle cramps, fatigue, irritability, numbness, and paresthesia.

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN B5 / PANTOTHENIC ACID:

 

  • Keeps hair strong and vibrant

  • Supports keeping skin moisturized

ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

Avocado, broccoli, brown rice, mushrooms (cooked shiitake), sunflower seeds, sweet potatoes (baked),  wholegrains, wholemeal bread

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

According to the Department of Health; You should be able to get all the pantothenic acid you need by eating a varied and balanced diet. If you take supplements, taking 200mg or less per day of pantothenic acid in supplements is the maximum needed that is unlikely to cause any harm.

VITAMIN B6 /

PYRIDOXINE

 

You need B6 in your daily

diet, because it cannot be

stored in the body. B6 is

present in most foods, so deficiency is quite rare,

however, it is usually seen in

the form of seizures, peripheral neuropathy, anemia, and a pellagra-like syndrome.

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN B6 /

PYRIDOXINE

 

  • Allows the body to use and store energy from protein and carbohydrates in food

  • Supports healthy hair colour

  • Helps to form haemoglobin – the substance in red blood cells that carries oxygen around the body

  • Essential for regulating sleep, mood, and appetite

  • Prevents dry skin

ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

Bananas, hazlenuts, pistachios, potatoes, soya beans, spinach,  sunflower seeds

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

According to the NHS,

the average adult needs:

 

 

Men - 1.4mg per day

   

Women - 1.2mg per day

VITAMIN B7 / VITAMIN B8

BIOTIN / VITAMIN H

 

You need B7 in your daily

diet, because it cannot be

stored in the body.

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN B7 / BIOTIN

 

  • Converts food into glucose, which is used to produce energy, produce fatty acids and amino acids (the building blocks of protein)

  • Activates amino acid/protein in fingernail cells and hair follicles

  • Essential for healthy metabolism

  • Nourishes adrenals

ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

Almonds, avocado, cauliflower (raw), chard, legumes, raspberries, soy beans,  whole-wheat bread, yeast (7 grams)

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

In 2014 the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), recommended the adequate intake should be set at 40mcg per day for adults and pregnant women.

VITAMIN B9 / FOLATE

(FOLIC ACID)

 

You need B9 in your daily

diet, because it cannot be

stored in the body.

ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

Asparagus (cooked), avocado, black eyed peas (cooked), broccoli (cooked), brussels sprouts,fortified breakfast cereals (some),  chickpeas, cos or romaine lettuce, garbanzo beans (cooked), lentils (cooked),  mango, mung beans, oranges, spinach, turnip greens    

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN B9 / FOLATE

(FOLIC ACID):

 

  • Essential for healthy pregnancy

  • Helps to repair cells and synthesize DNA and RNA

  • Helps to produce healthy red blood cells

  • Enhances brain health

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

In 1998  the US Food and Nutrition Board established recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of:

 

Men - 400mcg a day

 

Women - 400mcg a day

 

Pregnancy - 600mcg a day

VITAMIN B12 *

 

You need B12 in your daily diet, because it cannot be stored in the body. B12 is NOT available in ANY vegetable or vegan diet.

 

VEGANS NEED TO TAKE A DAILY VITAMIN SUPPLEMENT.

 

A slight deficiency may lead to fatigue, depression

and anemia.

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN B12:

 

  • Important for metabolism, energy, brain and nervous system function

  • Protects against cognitive decline

VEGETARIAN AND ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

Brewers yeast, B12 supplements, fortified breakfast cereals (some), eggs, milk, whey powder,  yogurt (non-fat)

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

According to the NHS,

the average adult needs:

 

 

Men - 0.0015mg per day

   

Women - 0.0015mg per day

 

If you eat meat, fish or dairy foods, you should be able to get enough vitamin B12 from your diet.

VITAMIN C

 

You need vitamin C in your daily diet, because it cannot be stored in the body.

 

A lack of vitamin C can lead to scurvy.

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN C:

 

  • Essential for the production of collagen and elastin, structural components of skin that keep it toned and firm

  • Important for healthy metabolism

  • Helps to protect cells and keeps them healthy, supporting the maintenance of healthy connective tissue, which gives support and structure for other tissue and organs

  • Powerful antioxidant

  • Regenerates vitamin E in the body

  • Helps wound healing

ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

Bell peppers (red, orange, green, and yellow) blackcurrants, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage,  kale, kiwi, papaya, pineapple, strawberries

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

According to the NHS,

the average adult needs:

 

 

Men - 40mg per day

   

Women - 40mg per day

 

VITAMIN D

 

A lack of vitamin D can lead to bone deformities such as rickets in children, and osteomalacia in adults, seen through bone pain and tenderness.

 

Those of African Caribbean decent are more prone to deficiencies, as well as those who are pregnant or breastfeeding, children under the age of five, adults over the age of sixty-five, those who are housebound or do not get enough sun exposure. A daily D3 supplement of 10 micrograms (0.01mg) may be helpful.

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN D:

 

  • Regulates calcium and phosphorus absorption

  • Maintains healthy bones and teeth

  • Regulates the antimicrobial defenses of our skin

  • Suggested to be essential for supplying a protective effect against multiple diseases  and conditions such as cancer, type 1 diabetes and multiple sclerosis.

  • Essential for bone-building, and energy

ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

The Sun (get outside and take in the sun, responsibly), mushrooms, supplements.

 

 

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

According to the NHS,

the average adult needs:

 

 

0-50 years: 5 mg per day

   

51-70 years: 10mg per day

 

71+: 20mg per day

 

Categories:

VITAMIN E

 

Vitamin E acts as an antioxidant, which protects

cell membranes. This helps to maintain healthy skin, eyes and strengthens the

immune system.

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN E:

 

  • Defends against free-radical damage

  • Maintains healthy, moisturized skin and scalp by protecting cell membranes and helping to build red blood cells

  • Supports healthy levels of antiaging glutathione

ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

Almonds, avocados, chard, corn, soya, olives and olive oil, papaya, peaches, tomatoes, spinach, sunflower seeds

 

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

According to the NHS,

the average adult needs:

 

 

Men - 4mg per day

 

Women - 3mg per day

VITAMIN K1 / PHYLLOQUINONE

 

A plant-based nutrient, mostly used by the liver to activate calcium-binding proteins involved in blood clotting.

 

Vitamin K is needed for blood clotting; helping wounds to heal properly, and keeping bones healthy.

 

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN K1:

 

  • Important for healthy blood clotting

  • Strengthens blood vessels to reduce dark circles and prevent varicose veins

 

ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

Arugula (raw), asparagus,  basil, beets, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage (red), cauliflower, collard greens, cucumber,  dandelion greens,  escarole, kale, parsley, purslane, soy beans, spinach, swiss chard,  watercress

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

According to the NHS,

the average adult needs:

 

0.001mg a day of vitamin K for each kilogram of their body weight. For example, someone who weighs 55kg would need 0.055mg a day of vitamin K, while a person who weighs 62kg would need 0.062mg a day.

VITAMIN K2 / MENAQUINONE

 

Mostly animal-based, mostly used to activate proteins that regulate where calcium ends up in the body.

 

BENEFITS OF VITAMIN K2:

 

  • Works with calcium to maintain healthy bones, teeth, and nails.

  • Supports the lessening of calcification of arteries; lessening heart disease

  • Several studies have been done on vitamin K2 that have found a reduction of the reoccurrence of certain types of cancer, like liver cancer, and lower risk of advanced prostate cancer in men.

VEGETARIAN AND ANIMAL-FREE FOOD SOURCES:

 

Cheese (hard, made of whole milk), egg yolk, fermented foods like sauerkraut, natto and miso, supplements in the form of MK-4, a synthetic version produced from an extract of the plant Nicotiana tabacum, and MK-7, a more natural form sourced from natto

DAILY ALLOWANCE:

 

There is no specific dietary recommendations  for vitamin K2 daily intake.  However, the recommendations for the daily intake of K1 offer a guide, since the body transforms K1 into K2.

© 2015 NOVENA-CHANEL DAVIES  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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Phytochemicals:

Anthocyanins  -  Catechins

Flavonoids  -  Phenolic Acids

Others