Mighty micronutrients: part 2

I’m sure you could find a supplement for all these micronutrients – but I’m also sure your body would know the difference! Because the very best way to “take” them isn’t with a glass of water, but in the whole foods sources that contain them.

Another advantage of getting your vitamins and minerals from food is that it would be pretty hard to take too much of them that way. For example, vitamin A can be toxic in excessive amounts. And even vitamin C, which can be taken in much bigger doses, can cause stomach distress when taken in large amounts.

So check out these examples of where you can find these mighty micronutrients, and start including more of these foods in your diet today!


Where it’s found: Citrus fruits, dark green leafy vegetables, whole grains (especially wheat bran), beans and legumes, poultry, shellfish, liver.

Why it’s mighty: A water-soluble B vitamin that needs to be constantly replenished, folate assists in red blood cell formation and tissue growth and helps the body manufacture DNA. It’s also an especially essential micronutrient for pregnant women, as it reduces the risk of birth defects.


Where it’s found: Carrots, tomatoes, squash, dark leafy greens, eggs, oranges or any fruits, berries or vegetables with orange, red and yellow pigments.

Why it’s mighty: A member of the carotenoid family, this phytochemical helps keep vision sharp and reduces the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts. Research shows that it also may help prevent a stroke by significantly reducing the thickness of carotid (neck) artery walls.


Where it’s found: Nuts, whole grains, dried legumes.

Why it’s mighty: This mineral is very important to the body when ingested in trace amounts. It can assist coordination among the brain, nerves and muscles, as well as serving as a component of the various enzymes that metabolize proteins, fats and carbohydrates.


Where it’s found: Whole grains, nuts, seeds, poultry, meat and shellfish.

Why it’s mighty: In addition to enhancing immunity and protecting against infection, zinc can help alleviate eczema, and help with concentration.

Vitamin E

Where it’s found: Wheat germ, nuts, sunflower seeds and green, leafy vegetables.

Why it’s mighty: Another important antioxidant, this fat-soluble vitamin also protects cells against the effects of free radicals, as well as supporting the immune system and helping in the repair of DNA. Vitamin E works especially well in concert with Vitamin C.

Next, I’ll tell you about a micronutrient that can both reverse bone loss and increase bone density. Best of all, it’s easy to find and delicious to boot!

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