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Vitamin Guide

Article care of hardcorebodybuilding.com

INTRODUCTION
VITAMIN A 
VITAMIN B 
VITAMIN C
VITAMIN D 
VITAMIN E 
VITAMIN K 
AMINO ACIDS

 

INTRODUCTION:

Mental fitness and physical fitness go hand in hand. One is useless without the other. Nutrition is the key to both. We all know that we need vitamins and minerals to achieve a healthy body and mind, but do we all do what we need to do for acquiring these vital substances? Well, it is just too easy to go through the drive-thru at the burger place or order in from a delivery restaurant. This is not good, we know, but it is easy and fast.  Well, laziness has no place in a healthful mind and body. I mean, if you can't go to the store and cook some good food, how do you expect to exercise and lift weights? The irony here is, the more work you do, the more energy you will have.  The reason for that is, work, or exercise, leads to a higher metabolism, which leads to more red blood cells, more oxygen in the blood (both of which lead to energy), more enzymes that make the body function at it's natural level, and better thought processing.  The list is far too long to elaborate on, but it is true. For a healthier mind and body, physical exercise and a healthy eating style are essential.

We all pretty much know how to exercise, but hardly any of us know how to eat.  It always amazes me to think of how little we know about our own body. I mean, talk about taking something for granted! My philosophy is that we should know absolutely every thing we possibly can about our own body and it's functions, our laws, and the bible.  These are the things in which we live by, or should maybe, eh? Yet we have so little understanding of any of them. Well, enough of my philosophy, chances are, you know how your car works and how to make it work better, why not your own body? The thing that does everything you want it to. Talk about dependability and reliability. Well, I will do my best to put together something that you can understand, without putting you through a biology class in the meantime.

Vitamins and minerals are what make our bodies tick and tock and what could make them purr like a supercharged V-8 on nitro, well, maybe not that good. We can though, take in just enough to stay ticking and tocking or we can take the amounts we need to have the energy and functionality we need. Here are the basics of what vitamins and minerals are and what they do in our bodies.

Vitamins, there are thirteen of them and are either fat soluble or water soluble.  The water soluble vitamins are vitamin C and all the B vitamins (Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, Pyridoxine, Folic acid, Cobalamin, Biotin, and Pantothenic acid). Fat soluble vitamins are vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin E, and vitamin K. The fat soluble vitamins are stored in your fatty tissues and the liver and processed there too, but not used up every day. Water soluble vitamins are not stored, but used in the rest of your body on a daily basis and need to be replenished daily as well. There are a total of thirteen vitamins and you need all thirteen of them to function properly and healthy.

What vitamins and minerals do in our bodies is very important to know. Vitamins and minerals are the reasons we function on the cellular level. Vitamins make enzymes and hormones, the essential parts of our living. Enzymes are compounds your body makes from vitamins, minerals, and proteins and combinations of them. Enzymes speed up chemical reactions in your body. One very important one is the anti-oxidant enzyme and I will get into it in detail later. Hormones are chemical messengers that tell your body what to do. Hormones regulate your growth, sexual characteristics, blood pressure, heart rate, glucose levels, and many other functions. Vitamins and minerals have no calories and do not give you energy, but lead to the processes that can cause energy, like oxygen increase in the blood, more red blood cells, more protein conversion, etc.. and must be eaten in your food for you to get them, as well as taking supplements, which is a good idea even while on a good nutritious diet. I don't think any of us could truly eat a good diet every day and even if we did, some vitamins and minerals would not be counted for or not in a sufficient amount.

The amounts of vitamins and minerals we should take is of much controversy. The recommended daily allowances are there for the purpose of preventing any deficiency diseases and are not enough for many people, in fact, they are just enough for prevention.  The fact is, we should consume twice that amount of certain vitamins and minerals, but not all of them. With water soluble vitamins, you could safely take much larger doses than the RDA and your body will just wash out the excess in your fluids, but fat soluble vitamins like I said are stored, so you could  actually build an over supply and potentially cause problems.

Once you start eating properly and taking in all of your vitamins and minerals you will be on your way to a healthier mind and body, but this will not happen right away.  After some months of a healthy diet, you will begin to fell more energetic, happier, more optimistic, fewer illness problems, and just a better sense of being.

Here is a list of safe dosages for a healthy adult.

Vitamins

Vitamin A: 5,000 - 25,000 IU's
Vitamins B: Thiamin 2-100 mgs
Riboflavin 50-100 mgs
Niacin 20-100 mgs
Pyridoxine 3-50 mgs
Folic acid 800 mcgs - 2 mgs
Cobalamin 500-1,000 mcgs
Pantothenic acid 4-7 mgs
Biotin 30-100 mcgs
Vitamin C: 500-2,000 mgs
Vitamin D: 400-600 IU's
Vitamin E: 200-400 IU's
Vitamin K: 160-300 mcgs

Minerals

Calcium: 1,000-1,500 mgs
Copper: 1.5-3.0 mgs
Chromium: 50-200 mcgs
Iron: 15-30 mgs
Magnesium: 300-500 mgs
Manganese: 2.5-5.0 mgs
Molybdenum: 75-250 mcgs
Potassium: 2,000-3,500 mgs
Selenium: 70-200 mcgs
Zinc: 15-50 mgs


You may have noticed that some are missing, this is because the amount is nothing to worry about, as you will easily consume it in your diet, in fact, even if you weren?t trying.

Now that we have covered the aspect of what vitamins and minerals are, what they do, and how much to take we need to get into what each specific vitamin and mineral does and what foods to find it in, this however, is a long process. I will go into detail on two vitamins and two minerals per issue, but in the meantime, get a head start and begin taking your supplements and getting started on a good physical exercise routine. Once you start this, keep reading our monthly issues to find better fitness routines and learn what these vital substances each do for your body.

We can't expect to go to the gym, take some steroids and get physically fit, buff, or even massive and expect to keep it on and be healthy. You must eat right, be committed, surround your self with people who want the same thing and may even be successful at it. Otherwise, you will be where you are and among the average, which isn't bad, but if that's what you wanted, you wouldn't be looking here would you?

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I would really like to tell all of you out there, I know vitamins, minerals, nutrition, and all that jazz is not what you want to read about.  It is boring.  But I also know that all of you want to know the best way to gain mass.... and keep it.  That is one of the most often asked questions I get, "How do I keep the gains after my cycle?"  Well, I suggest you read about all of these vitamins and minerals each issue, I know it doesn't have a lot to do with steroids and that is what you want to know about.  Remember though, you are not just taking steroids, you are training, training hard.  Your body needs it's nutrients more than ever now and you need to know about it more than ever now.

You know that nutrition is important in working out, exercising, and staying fit, but do you know which vitamins and minerals are destroyed by steroids and thyroid meds?  Do you know how much of these you need per day?  And which ones will help you gain muscle and energy and strength?  Then read on, this issue is a bit long, but I had to include all of the B vitamins for your benefit instead of one B now and two per issue later.  The B's are very important in your body and training.

Trust me, all of this pertains to you if you train, on or off steroids. 

The first two vitamins I will go into are vitamin A and the B vitamins (which are many, but I will cover all of them).

VITAMIN A:

Vitamin A will help keep you healthy, give you a lot of antioxidants, and not to mention better eyesight to see your results in the mirror! Night blindness is one of the most prominent symptoms of VITAMIN A deficiency. Now, how it works. VITAMIN A helps you health wise by creating an offense to infections through growing and repairing your body's epithelial cells at a better efficiency.  Epithelial cells are the cells that line your digestive tract, lungs, mouth, eyes, nose, throat, and urinary tract among all of your body's internal and external surfaces to keep out germs and the like.  In early development, you need VITAMIN A to help grow and build properly; bones, teeth, etc? but in adulthood, you still need it to replace old and damaged tissue cells and to keep your bones and teeth strong and healthy.
So, I mentioned "antioxidants" again.  I will give you the run down on them. Antioxidants are enzymes that protect your body from free radicals that bounce around in your body on a cellular level, knocking your cells of balance and destroying them. Antioxidants capture them and escort them out of your body like the bouncer at the local pub escorts out the drunken slob.  Free radicals are unstable, destructive oxygen atoms and come from toxins like cigarette smoke, pollution, and even from the things we eat and drink, but with the proper balance of vitamins, you can get rid of them and be healthy.
The source of antioxidants comes mostly from "Carotenes".  Carotenes are the largest source of VITAMIN A as well. Roughly 40% of the carotenes you eat are converted into VITAMIN A in your liver and small intestine, as you need it. The rest act as powerful antioxidants. Beta-carotene is especially good at getting rid of free radicals.  Carotenes are natural pigments found in plant foods such as tomatoes, carrots, apples, oranges, strawberries, dark green vegetables, yellow vegetables, etc? (I.E. why you need to eat the most colorful of foods to get the most nutrition out of them).  All red, green, yellow, orange fruits and veggies as well as potatoes have a good supply of B-carotene in them. In fact, five servings per day of fruits and veggies will give you all the VITAMIN A you need as well as plenty other vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber, without calories and cholesterol. One molecule of beta-carotene is converted into two molecules of VITAMIN A. VITAMIN A is also found in animal foods such as egg yolks, beef liver, American cheese, Cheddar cheese, butter, swordfish, yogurt, and many others.
Amounts of VITAMIN A in some of these foods for example are 82 RE's (retinal equivalents) per 1 ounce of American cheese, 9,000 Re's for 3 ounces of beef liver, 11 RE's for 3 ounces of salmon, and 35 for 3 ounces of swordfish. Now, the amount of beta-carotene in food is; one apple contains 120 I.U.'s of b- carotene, one banana has 230, 1/2 cup cooked broccoli has 1,940, one medium raw carrot has 8,100 I.U's , one tomato has 1,110, one large peach has 2,030, and one cooked sweet potato has 9,230 I.U.'s!  Since VITAMIN A is fat soluble and stored in your liver and fatty tissues, there is the potential of overdosing and getting toxicity, so keep an eye on your intake. Supplement VITAMIN A is really not necessary unless you have a deficiency, you can get plenty from foods.  The recommended daily values of VITAMIN A are 1000 - 5000 I.U.'s per day for men and 800 - 4000 for women.

VITAMIN B:

I am going to tell you about the B's now, why you need them, foods that are high in them, and how they protect your body.
As you know, there are twelve B vitamins, I'll get into each of them beginning with B1, but first, why you need them.
All the B's come together to keep you healthy, to grow and reproduce properly, and for sending messages through your nerves from your brain.  They are also responsible for converting foods into fuel and thus producing vital energy.  Some of the B's also help your heart, keeping it healthy. On their own though, each one does a specific beneficial function in your body, so now we get into them individually.

Thiamin, B1; You need this for better mental function and memory, can you remember this? If not, take some Thiamin! It keeps your cells and nerves working right, regulating their growth, it also converts food into energy. Your body goes through a seriously complex series in converting what you eat into energy.  All B's take part in this, whether alone or in conjunction with one another. One step in specific that B1 contributes is an enzymatic process called Thiamin pyrophosphate or TPP.  Without Thiamin, you can't make the enzyme, without the enzyme, the whole process stops. As far as your brain and nervous system, your brain runs on glucose, a type of sugar that is made from the carbohydrates you eat.  Thiamin helps your brain and nervous system absorb enough glucose.  Without it, they absorb about half of what they need, causing you to become forgetful, depressed, lethargic, and apathetic.  It also regulates your heart; how strong it pumps, how evenly, and how many beats per minute.
Some ways to tell if you are not getting enough B1.  In 1911, scientists isolated Thiamin in the brown husk part of brown rice.  Before this, they only knew that there must have been something in it that was beneficial to the body.  For about 110 years, people were getting a disease called BeriBeri, a Singhalese word for "I can't, I can't".  By the way, Singhalese is spoken in Sri Lanka. When you don't get enough Thiamin, you become tired, forgetful, yada, yada, yada, but when you don't get any, you can't really function at all and could even die.  Well, this happened in Asia, in the1800's.  Asia began to "polish" the brown rice, making it white rice, at the same time, they were removing the Thiamin from it.  It took about 90 years to realize what had happened, since in other areas where people ate only brown rice, people did not get "beriberi".  As I mentioned, in 1911 (110 years later) they isolated Thiamin.  Beriberi is very uncommon, except in some less developed areas of the world, but we can get a deficiency from it, even though only about 2 - 6 mgs per day are necessary.  If you drink a lot of alcohol or tea, or wine, you may need to take more supplements of Thiamin.  Alcohol destroys Thiamin, so do the tannins in teas and wine. Also, if you are on any type of metabolic stimulant, you should consider higher doses of Thiamin. Since your metabolism is higher, you will process your vitamins faster and thus need more of them through-out the day.  Vitamin B's are water-soluble, so you need not worry about any toxicity from taking too much.
Finding Thiamin in your food.  This is not difficult.  Obviously brown rice, but all grains and wheat germ, and nuts and seeds. Whole wheat breads, oatmeal, milk, potatoes, cauliflower, asparagus, raisins, oranges, peas, and beans.  Beef liver and pork are also good sources of Thiamin, though there is some in all beef and chicken.
A good rule for your dose is around 0.5 - 1.0mgs per 1,000 calories you eat, with a minimum of 1.0 mgs per day.  If you are taking them in the form of a supplement, it should be taken with meals for best results.

Thiamin In Food  Food Amount Thiamin in mg
Asparagus, steamed  1 cup   0.12
Bagel 1 0.21
Beans, black   1/2 cup 0.21
Beans, black   1/2 cup 0.14
Beef, lean 3OZ 0.05
Beef liver   3OZ 0.23
Bread, whole wheat  1 slice 0.09
Cashews 3OZ 0.08
Chicken, roasted  3OZ 0.06 
Corn  1/2 cup 0.18
Green peas 1/2 cup 0.21
Ham 3OZ 0.82
Milk, nonfat  1 cup 0.09
Oatmeal    1 cup 0.26
Orange  1 0.13
Peanuts  3OZ 0.36
Pecans  3OZ 0.27
Pork, roasted  3OZ 0.52
Potato 1 medium 0.22
Raisins  1 cup 0.21
Rice, brown  1 cup 0.20
Wheat germ 1/4 cup 0.55

Functions of Thiamin: Energy, Brain functions, Nervous System, Moods.

Riboflavin, B2; this is very important for releasing energy from the foods you eat as well.  It is also important for regulating red blood cells, and hormones, as well as your growth and development. Since B2 helps in the production of red blood cells, it therefore adds increasing energy to your day and workout.
Much of what riboflavin does is in conjunction with other B's.  Basically, it leads to higher energy on cellular levels, but leads to better health from lining your membranes and producing cells that lead to a better immune system, respiratory system, and digestive system. Your RDA is about 2.0mgs per day, but a good dose is around 0.6 - 1.5 mgs per 1,000 calories you eat.  Riboflavin is found in many foods, mostly meats and dairy foods.  Sunlight destroys Riboflavin, so keep your breads, pastas, grains, milk, and cheeses in opaque containers and out of sunlight (though why would you have your milk or cheese in the sun? Just mentioning it).  Most flour and cereals are enriched with riboflavin. Some meats that have Riboflavin are beef liver, ground beef, chicken breasts, roasted pork, salmon; canned, and turkey breasts.  Milk and cheese are very high in Riboflavin. 
If you exercise a lot and hard, you will need to take more Riboflavin, but this is true with any and all vitamins.  Since you are metabolizing and burning more energy at increased levels, it only makes sense that you will need to replenish your nutrients more.  Some athletes report that taking Riboflavin supplements helped them during workouts with more energy, but also that it reduced the resting period or that they seemed to recover better and faster.  Now, if you are taking something like Clenbuterol or Triacana, or perhaps Dermalean (a Tiratricanol product), you will need to think about supplementing your nutrients since these are all metabolic stimulants.  Some things that Riboflavin helps with; energy, migraines, and eye-strain.  If you are taking it in the form of supplements, it should be taken with meals for best results.

Functions of Riboflavin: Energy, Energy, Energy, Red Blood Cells, Immune System, making all other B's work. 

Niacin, B3; A very important VITAMIN as it contributes to more than 50 processes in your body, from releasing energy, making hormones, regulating cholesterol, and detoxification, your body needs Niacin.

There are two ways to get your daily intake of Niacin, by actually getting Niacin in foods or by converting the protein into amino-acids, one of the amino-acids is Tryptophan.  Tryptophan is one of the nine essential amino-acids.  You can only get it from your food.  Eat a lot of proteins and you will get a lot of Tryptophan.  Your body uses about half of the Tryptophan for making some of the more than 50,000 proteins you need.  Only about half of your Niacin comes directly from the food you eat, the rest comes from Tryptophan.  It takes about 60mgs of Tryptophan to make 1mg of Niacin.  You need around 6.0 - 10.0 mgs of Niacin per 1,000 calories of food you eat, but at least 13 mgs per day.  The average healthy male should have about 20mgs per day.

NIACIN AMOUNT NIACIN IN MGS
Almonds, roasted 1 oz .08
Asparagus 1/2 cup 1.0
Avocado 1/2 medium 1.5
Bagel 1 1.9
Beef, ground 3 oz 4.0
Beef, liver 3 oz 10.0
Bread, whole wheat 1 slice 1.0
Chicken Breast 3 oz 8.5
Turkey Breast 3 oz 8.5
Cottage Cheese, Low Fat 1 cup 0.3
Cream of Wheat 3/4 cup 1.1
Flounder 3 oz 2.5
Milk, low fat 1 cup 0.2
Mushrooms, cooked 1/2 cup 3.5
Nectarine 1 medium 1.3
Peanut butter 2 tablespoons 3.8
Peanuts, dry roasted 1 oz 3.8
Tuna, canned in water 3 oz 11.3
Pork, roasted 3 oz 1 medium 5.5
Potato, baked 1 medium 3.3
Rice, brown 1 cup 3.0
Rice, white 1 cup 3.0
Rice, wild 1 cup 2.1
Salmon, canned 3 oz 5.0

 

TRYPTOPHAN IN FOODS AMOUNT TRYPTOPHAN IN MGS
avocado 1 medium 45
Banana 1 medium 14
Beef, ground  3 oz 243
Black Beans 1 cup 181
Beef liver 3 oz 301
Cheddar Cheese 1 oz 91
Chicken Breast 3 oz 326
Turkey, without skin 3 oz 267
Cottage Cheese, Low Fat 1 cup 312
Dates, dried 10 42
Egg 1 large 76
Flounder 3 oz 230
Milk 1 cup 113
Oatmeal 1 cup 84
Peanuts, dry roasted 1 oz 64
Pear 1 medium 17
Tuna, canned in water 3 oz 243

Niacin helps lower blood pressure levels, in fact, if you are on medicine for high blood pressure, do not take any Niacin supplements, it will drop your pressure way too low.  There are two types of Niacin supplements to buy, Niacinamide and Nicotinic acid.  Choose Niacinamide if you really think you need a supplement (you really should not though), but don't take too much.  Even 100mgs can cause heartburn and nausea and headaches.  Nicotinic acid is used mostly by doctors for high blood cholesterol patients.

Functions of Niacin: Lowers blood pressure, works with all other B's, converts proteins, and even helps women with PMS headaches (which could in turn be healthy for the guy as well!).

Pantothenic acid, B5; this vitamin works in close proximity to the other B's in the breakdown process of fats, proteins, and carbohydrates into energy.  It also makes vitamin D as well as red blood cells and some hormones.

This one is simple.  It does it's job of converting food into energy, making red blood cells, and vitamin D.  It doesn't do a lot more and you get the 2 - 4 mgs per day easily in almost everything you eat.  

Pyroxidine, B6; very important to bodybuilders.  It's main function is to appropriate all of your amino-acids to make the more than 5,000 proteins that your body needs in order to run properly. Not only that, it plays a role in making more than 60 different enzymes.  Remember enzymes? They are those little workers that speed up all of your chemical reactions, like what a Mallory Ignition does to your 350 big block, now we're cook'n with grease!  Proteins and enzymes, yeah baby, yeah!

With a mere two milligrams per day, you will make more than 60 different enzymes, help your immune system, produce red blood cells, and keep your nerves healthy.  That's just two milligrams a day!  Add a little more and just think of what you could do.  Doubling your Pyridoxine intake could make a big difference in the health of your heart, your immune system, even asthma and diabetes!  Hey, it will even help with PMS in women!

What Pyridoxine does on the cellular level is very important.  It is needed to convert the proteins in your food into the proteins your body needs and to convert carbohydrates from the kind you store into the ones you need and use for energy.  The daily intake should be around 0.020 - 0.050 mgs per gram of protein you eat.  The average person eats somewhere between 120 - 150 grams of protein per day which would make your Pyridoxine intake about 2.4 - 7.5mgs per day.     

PYRIDOXINE IN FOOD AMOUNT PYRIDOXINE IN MGS
Apricots, dried 10 halves 0.06
Avocado 1/2 medium 0.40
Banana 1 medium 0.66
Beef, ground                          3 oz 0.17
Beef liver 3 oz 0.78
Black Beans 1 cup 0.12
Cheddar Cheese 1 oz 0.02
Chicken Breast 3 oz 0.34
Cottage Cheese, Low Fat  1 cup 0.15
Flounder 3 oz 0.20
Mango 1 medium 0.28
Milk, Low Fat 1 cup 0.10
Pork, roasted  3 oz 0.39
Potato, with skin 1 medium 0.70
Prunes, dried 10 0.22
Raisins, golden 2/3 cup 0.32
Rice, brown 1 cup 0.28
Rice, white  1 cup 0.19
Sweet Potato, baked w/ skin 1 medium 0.28
Tuna, canned in water 3 oz 0.30
Turkey breast, w/skin 3 oz 0.28
Wheat Germ 1/4 cup 0.38
Yogurt, low fat 8 oz 0.11
Navy Beans 1 cup 0.30

Functions of Pyridoxine: A healthy, healthy, heart, a strong immune system, helps with depression, morning sickness, and converting stored sugar into energy.

  
Biotin, B7; sometimes called vitamin H, it is yet another vitamin that leads to energy release from the food we eat.  Biotin is found in many foods, but mostly in Beef liver, egg yolks, nuts, and whole grains.  There is no RDA for Biotin, you can easily get what you need. 

BIOTIN IN FOOD  AMOUNT BIOTIN IN MCGS
Banana 1 medium 6
Beef liver 3 oz 82
Brewer's yeast 3 oz 73
Eggs 1 large 10
Oatmeal, cooked 1 cup 9
Peanut Butter 2 tablespoons 12
Rice, brown 1/2 cup 9
Rice, white  1/2 cup 2

Functions of Biotin: Hair loss, Biotin helps hair loss only if you are losing it due to a lack of Biotin.  Some hair shampoos and conditioners have Biotin in them, though, it really won't do anything.  If you are losing hair because of a Biotin deficiency, it will grow back when you take in more Biotin, but if you are losing it because of your traits, tough luck..   It helps make your fingernails stronger, and of course works in conjunction with all the other B's for energy and conversions of protein.  

Folic acid, B9; another very important vitamin as it number one, grows and divides your cells properly, preventing birth defects. It also leads to what your moods are, what your appetite is like, how well you sleep, and is vital for keeping your arteries clean and open, thus lowering your chance of a heart attack. A definite for a bodybuilder, a good appetite and sleep regimen is a must.

You might not know that your body replaces millions of red blood cells and other cells such as skin cells and mucous membrane cells every day, but it does.  Folic acid is important in replacing all of these cells for a healthier body and to fight off sicknesses.  The RDA for Folic Acid is 200mcgs per day, but this is really much too low.  A person should take 800mcgs per day, if you are nursing, breastfeeding, drink a lot of alcohol or smoke, you will definitely want at least 800mcgs, probably more.

FOLIC ACID IN FOOD AMOUNT FOLIC ACID IN MCGS
Asparagus 1/2 cup 132
Avocado 1/2 medium 56
Banana 1 medium 22
Beets, cooked 1/2 cup 45
Black Beans 1 cup 256
Black-eyed Peas 1 cup 123
Bread, whole wheat  1 slice 14
Broccoli, cooked 1/2 cup 39
Brussels sprouts, cooked 1/2 cup 47
Cantaloupe 1 cup 27
Collard greens, cooked 1/2 cup 65
Lima beans, baby 1 cup 273
Beef liver 3 oz 200
Chicken liver 3 oz 660
Lentils 1 cup 358
Kidney beans 1 cup 229
Navy beans 1 cup 255
Orange 1 medium 47
Peanuts, dry roasted 1 oz 41
Romaine lettuce 1/2 cup 38
Spinach, raw  1/2 cup 54
Spinach, cooked 1/2 cup 131
Wheat germ 1/4 cup 82
Chick peas 1 cup 282

Functions of Folic Acid: Replenishing and replacing your body's cells, working with all other vitamin B's for better health.

Cobalamin, B12; The necessity of B12 is the processing of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats in your food into energy. It also forms the protective covering of your nerve cells and keeps your red blood cells healthy, and helps prevent heart disease.  Cobalamin prevents anemia since it produces fine, healthy rounded red blood cells which carry your oxygen and nutrients around your body.  It also produces all the cells in your immune system along with your white blood cells.  You need around 500 - 1,000 mcgs per day, though the RDA will say much less.

COBALAMIN IN FOOD AMOUNT COBALAMIN IN MCGS
Beef, ground 3 oz 2.1
Beef liver 3 oz 68.0
Cheddar Cheese 1 oz 0.23
Chicken leg 1 medium 0.35
Chicken liver 3 oz 16.6
Clams, steamed 3 oz 84.06
Cottage Cheese, low fat 1 cup 1.43
Egg 1 large 0.56
Flounder 3 oz 2.13
liverwurst 1 slice 2.42
Milk, low fat 8 oz 0.90
Swiss Cheese 1 oz 0.48
Tuna, light 3 oz 2.54
Yogurt, low fat 8 oz 1.28
     

Functions of Cobalamin: Healthy red blood cells, healthy linings to your immune system, nerves, and inner membranes.    

That was a list of the "official B's", as you noticed, not all the little numbers were present in order. The "unofficial B's" are as follows.

Choline; This vitamin is used by your brain in storing memory. It is being introduced for treating depression and hepatitis.

Inositol; this vitamin also helps in maintaining healthy cell membranes and messenger chemicals. It also helps repair nerve damage from diabetes.

PABA; (Para-AminoBenzoic Acid) This you may or may not know, is found in many sun blockers. It is a powerful anti-oxidant that protects your skin form sun damage.

Lipoic acid; this helps vitamins B 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 convert carbs, proteins, and fats into energy. As well, it is a powerful anti-oxidant and recycles vitamin C and E.

That's it for the B family. You may be wondering why B4, B8, B10, and B11 were not mentioned by number.  Well, the first B vitamin to be discovered was called "water soluble" and meant that it was only the second vitamin ever identified (the first being fat soluble). Riboflavin was discovered next, so "water-soluble B" became "B1" and Riboflavin became "B2". Later, researchers realized that B1 was actually two vitamins, Thiamin and Niacin. Thiamin kept the B1 name, B2 was already taken, so Niacin became B3. Research continued and scientists found many substances they thought were new B vitamins, some turned out to be the same as the B's that were already discovered and some not to be vitamins at all. These unofficial B's are the ones thought to be "new vitamins" and also have no RDA value.

None of the "unofficial" B's have an RDA.

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VITAMIN C:

What doctors use to scoff at, they now endorse with all their might.  Twenty years ago, Vitamin C had many claims; protection against cataracts (while on DNP?), heart disease, cancer, and many other medical problems, not to mention over all health against common colds and such.

Since Vitamin C is responsible for more than 300 purposes in your body, everything from being the top anti-oxidant, producing collagen, keeping your immune system in top shape, curing some male infertility problems, lowering blood pressure, fighting allergies and asthma, and relieving stress, it only stands to reason to take it as a supplement (maybe more so if on steroids).

One good point I made above, Vitamin C produces Collagen.  Collagen is essentially the "adhesive" that holds your body together.  It is the connective tissue that holds your muscles to your skeleton, your skin to your muscles, and thus, keeps you together.  This may not mean much to you, but it also is needed to heal injuries faster.  Getting your attention now?  If Collagen will help heal sprained joints, broken bones, cuts, and other injuries, then would it not make sense that it will mean a better and faster muscle recovery after a workout?  And what about all those days we are too sick to go to the gym?  Vitamin C fights these sicknesses and strengthens your immune system. If you are on steroids, your blood pressure may go up significantly right?  Vitamin C will help keep it low (as will the B's, remember?).  Another good point is asthma. Number one, Vitamin C helps lower your histamine levels, which, if high enough, will trigger an allergy attack and thus introduce an asthma attack. Secondly, it is the best anti-oxidant around, so it will help protect your lungs and airways against dust, pollen, and pollution through the elimination of your free radicals.  Vitamin C is also said to protect against cancer and Parkinson's Disease, but we will not dwell there as it doesn't pertain to your life as a body builder. Gingivitis though, is another problem that taking some extra Vitamin C can help with, this means when you are nice and huge, your mouth will be kissable to all the babes.  The last point on vitamin C I will make is somewhat of a big one.  Men, how's your sperm count?  We know that taking steroids can lower it, or maybe you just have a low count as it is.  Vitamin C can significantly raise your sperm count by taking care of all those free radicals that destroy your cells and because there is more higher levels of Vitamin C in your seminal fluid than there is in your blood, thus protecting it. Though it may not help raise your levels so much when your testosterone production is low, it will save the ones that you do produce.  This Vitamin is water soluble, so it is necessary to take it daily.  How much to take is the question at hand now.  The RDA is a mere 60mgs, Doctors and nutritionists believe that is far too low, I agree with them.  The docs and nutritionists say 250 to 500 mgs per day is what you should have, but I think for body builders, that 1000 - 2000mgs per day is appropriate.  Remember, it is water soluble, so any extra will just wash out of your system with your fluids.

VITAMIN D:  
 
Vitamin D is the eccentric uncle of the vitamin family-it does things its own way. To get all the other vitamins, you have to eat them. To get Vitamin D, all you have to do is go outside. That's because you actually make Vitamin D when the sun shines on your skin. How? Basically, the ultraviolet light in the sunshine makes a type of cholesterol that's
found just under your skin turn into something called Vitamin D 3 or cholecalciferol. The Vitamin D 3 gets carried to your liver, where it gets changed into a more active form; from there, it goes to your kidneys, where it becomes even more active. Some of the Vitamin D 3 stays in your liver and kidneys, where it helps you reabsorb calcium from your blood. Some goes to your bones to help them hold on to their calcium. The rest goes to your intestines to help you absorb calcium from your food.
Even eccentric uncles act normal sometimes, though-and so does Vitamin D. It's found naturally in a few foods, but in a slightly different form called Vitamin D., or ergocalciferol. Your body can use this just as well-in fact, it's the form that's used in most Vitamin
D supplements.

VITAMIN D 
IN FOOD
AMOUNT VITAMIN D IN UI'S
BUTTER 1 PAT 2
CHEDDAR CHEESE 1 OUNCE 2.8
COD LIVER OIL 1 TEASPOON 460
EGG 1 LARGE 25
HERRING, FRESH 3 OUNCES 270
BEEF LIVER 3 OUNCES 26
MACKEREL, FRESH 3 OUNCES 943
MARGARINE 1 TABLESPOON 21
MILK 8 OUNCES 100
SALMON, FRESH 3 OUNCES 350
SARDINES, CANNED  3 OUNCES   1,000

If you spend a lot of time outside, your body will automatically stop making Vitamin D after it has stored up enough.  Vitamin D is fat soluble, so remember it is stored.  You can't overdose or have too much Vitamin D on your own since your body will stop producing it, but you can take too much with supplements and doing that with Vitamin D is dangerous. You can build up calcium in your blood and increase your risk of a heart attack or kidney problems.  Spending ten minutes in the sun a day during summer is quite enough, but if you spend every day in the sun for a long time, you will easily store up enough Vitamin D for the entire winter.  However, if you don't spend a lot of time in the sun, even in the summer, you could be low on Vitamin D.  Most people get between 50 and 70 IU's per day in their diet, but if you don't spend much time in the sun (your office window doesn't count, glass blocks ultraviolet rays) then taking a Vitamin D supplement would be a good idea.  If you do this, keep your intake below 1,000 IU's per day, the RDA is 200.

Vitamin D's most important function is to regulate how much Calcium you absorb from your foods.  Remember the importance of Calcium?  Well, it won't work with out Vitamin D.  Are you starting to realize the importance of taking all of your Vitamins yet?  They all seem to work very closely with one another, eh?  They indeed are very important, all of them.

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VITAMIN E: 

Vitamin E is pretty simple to go through. It really is an antioxidant, which works with Vitamin A and C in ridding your body of the cellular vandals running around in there. It is very good for heart condition too, as it will reduce the risk of heart disease and heart attacks. That is really what it does, so this one is a short one. The RDA is about 10mg, but really depends on how big you are, how much fat you have in your diet, etc.. since Vitamin E breaks down fat and also breaks down the platelets in your arteries that cause heart attacks (those platelets come from high cholesterol and fat). So that is Vitamin E in a nut shell, in fact it is, Vitamin E is found in nuts; almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts, and sunflower seeds (well, they're in a shell). 

VITAMIN K: 

This one too is simple to cover. Vitamin K is what makes your blood clot and stop pouring out of you. So, while you are cursing, swearing, and punching things when you get hurt, your body is doing it's job with Vitamin K, and of course all the others, in healing your injury and getting you back on the road. There really is no shortage or deficiency of Vitamin K, the RDA is around 65 to 80 mcgs. It is found in plant foods. 

AMINO ACIDS: 

Amino Acids are a much talked about subject, but what is being said? Take them and you will get big? Do we really know what they are? Lets find out and see why we need them in our diets and workouts. 

We know the body is so very complex, making millions of cells, hormones, antioxidants, enzymes, and chemical messengers every second of every day. So, how are all of these made? They are made or "built" from the "building blocks" called Amino Acids. There are twenty-two of them total, but do such an array of different functions and make thousands of these enzymes, hormones, etc... by forming different combinations with one another. Where do we get Amino Acids? From the protein in our food, which in essence, are long chains of Amino Acids. Every cell in your body is made from Amino Acids. Everything but your teeth and bones is made from the different combinations of Amino Acids. If you can't believe that just twenty-two Amino Acids can make every cell, hormone, enzyme, antioxidant, and messenger in your body, think about our entire language being made from just 26 letters. Well, it's that simple. 

Now, out of these twenty-six Amino Acids, you have essential aminos and non-essential aminos. There are nine essential aminos; Histidine, Isoleucine, Leucine, Lysine, Methionine, Phenylalanine, Thronine, Tryptophan, and Valine. The non-essentials are; Alanine, Arganine, asparagine, Aspartic acid, Carnitine, Cysteine, Glutamic acid, Glutamine, Glycine, Proline, Serine, Taurine, and Tyrosine. You know how the receptors work in receiving steroids, right? Remember, like a "lock and key", well, that's how these work. Your DNA tells your body which Amino Acids to put together for a specific protein, this could mean two or three combinations or a thousand combinations, but when it is made, it comes together with other proteins and only those of which it was made to go with, like a lock and key. Once aminos are linked together, they form proteins or chains, a "peptide" for example takes two or three aminos. Another example you can relate to is Arganine combined with Methionine and Glycine forms "Creatine". So we can dispel the theory of creatine in the fact that your body can only use so much of it and most people are low in these Amino Acids. So, the results people see are true enough, but it is only because they are supplementing their aminos with this creatine and taking a lot of it will not do anything. In fact, you could go to your health store and pick up some "free form" Amino Acids and take them with better results probably. Another good combination is Carnitine, made from Lisine and Methionine, it helps your heart work more efficiently. In fact, your heart contains more Carnitine than any other part of your body. It converts fatty acids into energy in the mitochondria. This protein is very helpful to those with angina or heart failure. It also helps with "Chronic Fatigue Syndrome" and depression, giving you more energy and a better sense of well being. Something we all want, right? It also lowers your LDL (bad cholesterol) and raises your HDL (good cholesterol). Very important stuff here. Remember, Proteins come from animal foods, meat, eggs, milk, etc... In fact, these are complete, meaning they contain all nine essential aminos. You can get aminos from plant foods, but it is incomplete or only has a few of them and not all nine essentials. Go to your health food store and check out the free form Amino Acids and make a good "stack" for your workouts. There are many many important things that Amino Acids do, from muscle gains to quality sleep to a better immune system. CHECK THEM OUT!!

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Neither trulyhuge.com nor the authors of this publication assume any liability for the information contained herein. The Information contained herein reflects only the opinion of the author and is in no way to be considered medical advice. Specific medical advice should be obtained from a licensed health care practitioner. Consult your physician before you begin any nutrition, exercise, or dietary supplement program.

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