Dr. Elliott: What Are Vitamins?
Vitamins are essential for an animal's proper growth and overall health.
Vitamins are essential for an animal’s proper growth, reproduction and overall health. All living creatures need vitamins. Animals utilize vitamins to regulate chemical reactions in the body. These chemical reactions institute the process that form tissues and produce energy.
Vitamins are classified in two groups, water soluble and fat soluble. Water soluble vitamins consist of B and C vitamins, bioflavonoids, choline, biotin and inositol. They are easy for your pet’s body to assimilate and they begin working as soon as the digestive system absorbs them. These vitamins are not stored in the body like fat soluble vitamins.
Fat soluble vitamins (A, E, D, F and K) need proper fat assimilation to work. The intestines absorb these vitamins while the lymphatic system carries them to various parts of the body and stores them in the liver, reproductive organs and tissues. Fat soluble vitamins assist in the synthesis of enzymes and maintaining sound cell membrane structure.
What happens if my pet lacks certain vitamins? Various problems will arise with these vitamin insufficiencies:
Biotin - Dermatitis, elevated blood
cholesterol, appetite loss, hair,
nails and skin problems
Choline - Nerve problems, weight gain
Folic Acid - Anemia, degraded immune system,
Lecithin - Cardiovascular problems, poor
digestion, liver problems
B1 (Thiamin) - Energy loss, brain-heart-liver
trouble, gastrointestinal problems, edema, weight loss
B2 (Riboflavin) - Dermatitis, energy loss, eye
problems, digestive disorders, nerves, anemia
B3 (Niacin) - weight gain, brain-nervous
function, poor digestion and skin problems
B5 (Pantothenic Acid) - lack of metabolism,
weak adrenal glands,
low red blood cell count
B6 ( Pyridoxine) - Hormone imbalance, improper
protein metabolism, immune system
B12-(Cobalamin) - Anemia, fatigue, good red
blood cell count, energy, un-healthy cells
Vitamin C - Infections, weak tissues, slow
degenerative diseases, allergies, weak immune system
Vitamin A - weight loss, impaired glandular
activity, poor vision, diarrhea, poor bone and tooth
Vitamin D - Brittle bones, respiratory
infections, bad teeth,
Vitamin E - Sterility, muscular weakness,
nerve problems, kidney malfunction
Vitamin F - Impaired growth, eczema,
- Vitamin K - Blood clotting, bone formation and density