Vitamins and minerals are called micronutrients because you only need small amounts compared to the macro-nutrients, which are carbohydrates, proteins and fats. But those small amounts are crucial for good health.
A healthy, balanced diet should provide the vitamins and minerals your body needs. People who have certain health conditions, eat nutrient-poor diets, or take some types of medications may need to use dietary supplements to ensure they get enough of all these vitamins and minerals.
1. Water-Soluble Vitamins
The water-soluble vitamins are vital for many of your body's functions, including energy production and immune system function.
Your body doesn't store the water-soluble vitamins very long, so they need to be replenished daily. Learn more about the water-soluble vitamins.
2. Fat-Soluble Vitamins
The fat-soluble vitamins are vital for many of the functions your body needs to stay healthy, including cell differentiation and immune system function, and they'll help to keep your bones strong.
Your body does store the fat-soluble vitamins; however, you still need small amounts each day to keep up those stores. Learn more about fat-soluble vitamins.
3. Major Minerals
The major minerals are necessary for many processes in your body, especially fluid balance, maintenance of bones and teeth, muscle contractions and nervous system function. They're available as dietary supplements, but be careful not to go over the tolerable upper levels. Learn more about the major minerals.
4. Trace Minerals
These minerals are all essential for good health, but your body only needs a very small amount of each one. These trace minerals are important for immune system function, energy, metabolism, and antioxidant protection. Learn more about the trace minerals.