Vitamins are essential for our bodies to perform the functions they are meant to. Lack of vitamins can lead to a range of health deficiencies and even malnutrition. Below is a list of vitamins that’s are essential as part of a healthy and balanced diet. The tables include the sources each vitamin can be found along with recommended daily intake of each.

 Vitamin A

Vitamin APurposeGood Food SourcesRecommended Intake
Vitamin A (retinol) helping your body's natural defence against illness and infection (the immune system) work properly, helping vision in dim light, keeping skin and the lining of some parts of the body such as the nose healthy. cheese, eggs, oily fish, fortified low fat spreads, milk and yoghurt, liver and liver products such as liver âté – this is a particularly rich source of vitamin A, so you may be at risk of having too much vitamin A if you have it more than once a week (this is particularly important if you're pregnant). You can get vitamin A by including good sources of beta carotene in your diet, as the body can change this into Vitamin A. This includes yellow, red and green (leafy) vegetables, such as spinach, carrots, sweet potatoes and red peppers yellow fruit, such as mango, papaya and apricots 0.7mg daily for men, 0.6mg daily for women

Vitamin B

Vitamin B TypesPurposeGood Food SourcesRecommended Intake
Thiamin (Vitamin B1) helps break down and release energy from food and keeps the nervous system healthy. peas, fresh and dried fruit, eggs, wholegrain breads, some fortified breakfast cereals, liver (adults aged 19-64 years) 1mg daily for men, 0.8mg daily for women
Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) helps keep skin, eyes and the nervous system healthy, helps the body release energy from the food. milk, eggs, fortified breakfast cereals, rice (adults aged 19-64 years) 1.3mg daily for men, 1.1mg daily for women
Niacin (Vitamin B3) helps release energy from the foods we eat, helps keep the nervous system and skin healthy. meat, fish, wheat flour, eggs, milk 16.5mg daily for men, 13.2mg daily for women
Pantothenic acid has several functions such as helping to release energy from food. chicken, beef, potatoes, porridge, tomatoes, kidney, eggs, broccoli, wholegrains such as brown rice or wholemeal bread include it in your diet daily
Vitamin B6 known as pyridoxine helps to allow the body to use and store energy from protein and carbohydrates in food,forms haemoglobin which is the substance found in red blood cells carrying oxygen around the body. pork, poultry such as chicken or turkey, fish, bread, wholegrain cereals such as oatmeal, wheatgerm and brown rice, eggs, vegetables, soya beans, peanuts, milk, potatoes, some fortified breakfast cereals (adults aged 19-64 years) 1.4mg daily for men, 1.2mg daily for women
Folic Acid helps the body form red blood cells broccoli, brussel sprouts, liver, spinach, asparagus, peas, chickpeas, fortified breakfast cereals adults need 200mcg of folic acid daily in their diet.
Vitamin B12 involved in making red blood cells and keeping the nervous system healthy, releasing energy from food, using folic acid. meat, salmon, cod, milk, cheese, eggs, some fortified breakfast cereals adults aged 19-64 years need about 1.5mcg daily of vitamin B12 in their diet.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C FunctionsGood Food SourcesRecommended Intake
Vitamin C also known as ascorbic acid has several important functions. These include helping to protect cells and keeps them healthy, maintaining healthy skin, blood vessels, bones and cartilage, helping with wound healing. oranges and orange juice, red and green peppers, strawberries, blackcurrants, broccoli, brussel sprouts, potatoes Adults aged 19-64 need 40mg of Vitamin C daily and this should be included in your diet everyday.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D PurposeGood Food SourcesRecommended Intake
helps regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body. These nutrients are needed to keep bones, teeth and muscles healthy. The body creates vitamin D from direct sunlight on the skin when outdoors. oily fish – such as salmon, sardines, herring, mackerel and fresh tuna red meat, liver, egg yolks, fortified foods – such as most fat spreads and some breakfast cereals, another source of vitamin D is dietary supplements. Adults need 10mcg of vitamin D a day. This includes pregnant and breastfeeding women, children, teenagers and people at risk of vitamin D deficiency.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E PurposeGood Food SourcesRecommended Intake
helps maintain healthy skin and eyes, and strengthen the body's natural defence against illness and infection (the immune system). plant oils – such as soya, corn and olive oil, nuts and seeds, wheatgerm – found in cereals and cereal products 4mg a day for men and 3mg a day for women

Vitamin K

Vitamin K PurposeGood Food SourcesRecommended Intake
needed for blood clotting, which means it helps wounds heal properly. green leafy vegetables – such as broccoli and spinach, vegetable oils, cereal grains, small amounts can also be found in meat and dairy foods. Adults need approximately 1mcg a day of vitamin K for each kilogram of their body weight. For example, someone who weighs 65kg would need 65mcg a day of vitamin K, while a person who weighs 75kg would need 75mcg a day. You should be able to get all the vitamin K you need by eating a varied and balanced diet. Any vitamin K your body doesn't need immediately is stored in the liver for future use, so you don't need it in your diet every day.