Vitamin K

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@ Niagara Falls

Vitamin K is naturally produced by bacteria in the intestines. It helps your body by making protein for healthy bones and tissues. It is a fat-soluble vitamin so your body stores it in fat tissues of the body. Vitamin K is very important because of it helps blood clotting and overall bone health. Newborns have very little Vitamin K so usually they will get a shot of it soon after they are born.

You can find Vitamin K in leafy green vegetables including:

  • Spinach
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Dark Berries

Deficiency of Vitamin K can cause hemorrhaging or bleeding. It is common in people who take anticoagulants/blood thinner drugs. It is rare however to have a deficiency because the bacteria in your intestines also produce small amounts of a type of Vitamin K.

“Vitamin K.” University of Maryland Medical Center. University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC), 2011. Web. 1 Dec. 2013.

Evolution of Vitamins

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@ Naval Park Canal

After looking into different types of vitamins and nutrients, I have learned a lot of what is truly important for female athletes to preform at a higher intensity. I have also learned it is important to stay informed with the information being provided to me.

As mentioned before, technology and the evolution of research/studies is constantly evolving. New leads are being introduced that could be more helpful to our nutrients intake and what foods offer the best options for our bodies.

The most important idea to keep in mind is stay educated on the matter of vitamins and nutrients. I had the opportunity to take a college course on the subject of food chemistry that allowed me to learn and evolve my understanding of vitamins and nutrients.

Since graduating I continue to research and stay informed on what I need to eat that benefits my overall health and helps me compete in running/races. You need to take the time to learn how to improve your health because you will help improve your body and overall health.

Vitamin E

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@ Madison, Connecticut

Vitamin E is an antioxidant that can help prevent heart disease and cancer. It plays a role in your immune system and metabolic process. You can find good sources of Vitamin E in:

  • Leafy Greens
  • Vegetable Oils
  • Margarine
  • Nuts/Seeds
  • Fortified Cereals

Now there are mixed reviews whether you should take a supplement of Vitamin E or if it is actually more helpful to your body to find it in foods. It is important to continue to learn about the new leads that will be released as the best source of Vitamin E and what is overall the best option for your body. With new technology and research, vitamins are becoming more advanced to help us get the best nutrients geared towards our specific body types.

“Vitamin E.” — Health Professional Fact Sheet. National Institutes of Health, 5 June 2010. Web. 1 Dec. 2013.

National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements

Vitamin D

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@ Bond Lake

Vitamin D is responsible for enhancing intestinal absorption of calcium, iron, magnesium, and phosphate. It purpose is to help form and maintain our bones. It is critical in the role of the body’s use of phosphorus and calcium.

Phosphorus is an essential mineral that is required by every cell in the body for normal function.

Calcium is needed by your body to help muscles and blood vessels contract and expand.

These are especially helpful for children because it allows them to develop strong bones and healthy teeth. With a deficiency of Vitamin D, you are at risk of muscle and bone weakness and loss of bone mass.

Some prime examples of food that product Vitamin D included:

  • Dairy Food
  • Egg Yolks
  • Liver
  • Tuna Packed in Oil
  • Fortified Cereals

Most food has very low Vitamin D which increases your risks of deficiency if you are not aware of it. You can also find Vitamin D in the sun light with 10-15 minutes of sun to your skin but over exposure can cause skin damage.

“Vitamin D.” WebMD. TherapeuticResearch Facility, 2009. Web. 1 Dec. 2013.

Basis of Food Chemistry

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@ Bond Lake

During my time in college, I took a class on food chemistry that enriched my understanding of a healthy lifestyle. It showed the importance of understanding what is the makeup of the food that you are putting into your body. In most cases I learned, the labeling of products can be misleading to the average consumer and the food is not as healthy as you thought. A great example: Everyone loves Kraft Mac and Cheese, however this is one of the worst products you can eat. The reasoning is simple, it contains artificial food dyes yellow 5 and 6 which is only used to create a brighter color for the chees. The food dye itself is unnecessary for the product and it can be extremely harmful to your body especially children which is what the products aims to target.

The field of food chemistry comprises of various different components. It is the study of the chemical processes and interactions of components of all foods. A popular topic of interest in the field of food chemistry is vitamins and the importance of them. Vitamins are an organic compound and are essential nutrients found in our body. They perform specific and vital functions in our body and are essential for nutrients. The important note to keep in mind is that the body does not need certain vitamins every day so it is important to be aware of your body and what it needs and does not need.

As a female runner, it is important to have an adequate amount of vitamins to help your overall athletic performance. The amount of vitamins you intake can either hinder or improve your athletic performance. Vitamins in general are essential nutrients found in our body. Their job is to perform specific and vital functions in our body. They are crucial for maintaining optimal health so it is important to be aware if you are getting enough vitamin intakes in your daily life. However it is important to know that not all vitamins are needed for your body everyday so it is important to educate yourself on the matter. Be aware of what foods you can find these vitamins and how much is too much. The important note to keep in mind is using vitamins are meant to help you be healthier in a few simple steps.

Vitamin C

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@ Fort Niagara

Vitamin C is needed for your body to work properly. It holds cells together through collagen synthesis which is connective tissue that holds your muscles, bones, and other tissues together. Vitamin C is important to your body because it aids in the healing of wound injuries. It also improves the immune system and it increases absorption of iron antioxidant.

It is very important for females because in promotes healing and helps the body absorb Iron!

Our body cannot produce or store Vitamin C so daily intake is essential for optimum health. Some benefits are the possible reduced risk of cancer and heart disease. The best way to intake Vitamin C is through rich foods such as:

  • Citrus Fruits
  • Bell peppers
  • Dark leafy greens
  • Broccoli
  • Berries
  • Papayas

There is no problem if you intake too much Vitamin C because it is a water soluble which means that the body will emit any excess.

“Vitamin C: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia.” U.S National Library of Medicine. U.S. National Library of Medicine, 2013. Web. 1 Dec. 2013.

Never Compare Yourself

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@ Stella Niagara

No matter who you are, there will always be someone who can run faster than you.

Example: Steve Prefontaine who is arguably one of the most successful distance runners of all time, held the American record in 7 different track events from the 2,000 meters to the 10,000 meters. Even Prefontaine had lost some races in his lifetime yet he never gave up and always raced within himself and his ability.

Why compare yourself to your teammates or competitors who have different levels of ability. Comparing yourself to others creates a discouraging atmosphere you put yourself in whether it is in running or even magazines with photo-shopping . Instead of running as a healthy lifestyle or psychological outlook, you put yourself in an unhealthy mindset and compare your performance by how some else ran instead of your ability and personal records. Running should be fun and putting this pressure on yourself can cause you to lose sight of it. Instead you are running as a chore or punishment.

“Success isn’t how far you got, but the distance you traveled from where you started” –Steve Prefontaine. Run within yourself and always run because you enjoy it and never by force.