The Ultimate Guide to Fat-Soluble Vitamins (ADEK) for Health
Fat-soluble vitamins are needed by our bodies in very small amounts, but they are essential for our well-being. Let us introduce you to vitamins A, D, E, and K.
Fat-soluble vitamins are among the essential nutrients that our bodies rely on daily to function optimally. A balanced and healthy diet consisting of fresh and unprocessed foods not only contributes to optimal physical performance but can also be the perfect regulator for optimal cognitive performance. When it comes to vitamins, many people immediately think of vitamin C, although fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K also play an equally important role, not only for the mucous membranes but also for your immune and hormonal systems.
1. What are fat-soluble vitamins and why do you need them?
Vitamins perform many important functions in your body. They are essential, meaning that you need them to maintain high levels of mental and physical performance. You probably know the feeling of being weak and lethargic when you have indulged in pizza instead of eating fresh food. The fact is that freshly prepared meals made from whole and fresh foods boost your cells, while your body runs on low energy with fast food and processed meals.
Vitamins have a special role in nutrition: they regulate many processes in your body, which is why they are considered essential. Essential means that your body does not function optimally without vitamins, which can be a great disadvantage for you as a performer. Water-soluble vitamins, especially vitamin C and the B vitamins, are often touted as particularly important, but fat-soluble vitamins are equally important.
Since the body is capable of storing fat-soluble vitamins (for example, in the liver), small amounts are sufficient to meet the daily requirements of fat-soluble vitamins. However, because fat-soluble vitamins are not soluble in water, they need to be consumed with fat in order to be metabolized. In the following, we describe the fat-soluble vitamins in more detail so that you know their functions and how much you need.
2. Types of fat-soluble vitamins
As you already know, there are a total of four fat-soluble vitamins that should be a regular part of your diet. Compared to water-soluble vitamins, fat-soluble vitamins are not „washed out,“ but this does not mean that you can neglect these nutrients, as they are involved in many metabolic processes and a deficiency can lead to concentration problems, fatigue, or lack of energy.
Vitamin A (Carotenoids)
When we talk about vitamin A, we usually refer to the fat-soluble vitamin retinol, which is primarily found in animal-based foods. If you’re wondering if you can meet your vitamin A needs with plant-based foods, we can reassure you: vitamin A is also present in plant-based foods, but in the form of carotenoids that your body can convert into vitamin A.
Carotenoids can be found in
and should be regularly included in your diet to meet the recommended daily intake of 800 to 1,100 micrograms. Vitamin A is primarily needed for vision and maintaining the health of the skin and mucous membranes. However, this fat-soluble vitamin also plays a significant role in the immune system, bone formation, and red blood cell production. Furthermore, vitamin A is involved in hormone synthesis, highlighting the importance of this fat-soluble vitamin.
Vitamin D (Calciferol)
Vitamin D is unique among vitamins because we do not necessarily rely on dietary intake for its supply. Your body can produce this vitamin on its own through exposure to sunlight, provided that you regularly expose your skin to sunlight and allow the sun’s rays to reach your skin unhindered. Unlike other fat-soluble vitamins, the synthesis of vitamin D takes place in your skin, which is why this vitamin is often compared to a hormone.
To be able to produce vitamin D, the sun needs to reach your skin unhindered, preferably between 11 am and 3 pm when the sun’s rays are the strongest. A short sunbath of 10 to 20 minutes should be sufficient to meet your vitamin D requirements. However, in today’s times, we increasingly protect ourselves from the sun, for example, by wearing long clothing or using sunscreen, and spend more time indoors, resulting in insufficient vitamin D intake. Additionally, sunlight is less intense during the colder months compared to summer.
The amount of vitamin D that you can ultimately produce depends not only on the time and season of the year but also on your skin type and age. According to experts, as we age, we become less efficient at synthesizing vitamin D, which is why taking a dietary supplement may be beneficial. While vegan sources, such as mushrooms, can also increase vitamin D intake, the content of vitamin D in food is extremely low compared to sunlight.
If you are one of those who spend most of their time indoors, even in summer, due to work or prefer exercising in the gym rather than running outdoors, taking a dietary supplement may be beneficial throughout the year. The German Society for Nutrition (DGE) recommends a daily intake of 800 IU, although many experts consider this dosage to be too low.
Vitamin D is essential for you as a high-performing individual. This sunshine vitamin is primarily needed for bone and muscle health, but it can also have an impact on the immune system, brain, and nerves by contributing to better nerve cell signaling.
Vitamin E (Tocopherols)
Vitamin E is not only a fat-soluble vitamin but also an antioxidant that can protect your cells from free radicals. Free radicals are unstable oxygen compounds that can arise, for example, from stress or increased physical exertion. Free radicals are not inherently bad, as they can support the body in combating viruses and bacteria.
However, in excessive amounts, they can have negative effects on the body because they can damage healthy cells. Free radicals have an inherently unstable structure: they lack an electron that they want to replace by damaging other cells and taking away their electron.
Vitamin E is believed to have a protective effect against free radicals, and this fat-soluble vitamin can also contribute to the prevention of inflammation and the strengthening of the immune system. It is mainly found in
with the daily recommended intake for adults typically ranging from 12 to 15 milligrams of vitamin E.
Vitamin K is another fat-soluble vitamin that your body can only store to a limited extent. This means that you need to obtain vitamin K through your diet to meet your daily requirements. The recommended intake is 60 micrograms for women and 70 micrograms for men per day, with an increased intake recommended starting at the age of 51, reaching 65 and 80 micrograms.
Green leafy vegetables, such as
Red cabbage, and
are good sources of vitamin K, making it relatively easy for health-conscious individuals to meet their daily vitamin K needs.
3. Why can a vitamin ADEK oil be beneficial?
Usually, we can easily meet our daily requirements of fat-soluble vitamins through our diet, even if you follow a vegan diet. However, if you want to perform at the highest level both mentally and physically, dietary intake alone is often not enough, as the vitamin demands are often much higher, which can lead to deficiencies in the long run.
Deficiencies often manifest gradually, and you may not notice them at first. In addition to general symptoms such as fatigue, lack of drive, and concentration problems, other signs of deficiencies can include hair loss, skin issues, inflammation, muscle problems, or digestive issues.
By using a dietary supplement, you can prevent such deficiencies or compensate for existing deficiencies with a supplement. Instead of taking multiple supplements simultaneously, it is recommended to opt for a premium vitamin ADEK oil that contains fat-soluble vitamins in concentrated and high-dose form.
Compared to regular dietary supplements, a vitamin ADEK oil has the advantage of combining all fat-soluble vitamins, which can improve bioavailability. Just a drop is enough to increase the intake of fat-soluble vitamins. Since the vitamins are already dissolved in oil, the dietary supplement does not necessarily need to be combined with fat.
4. Conclusion: Don’t neglect fat-soluble vitamins
Fat-soluble vitamins should always be an integral part of your diet, even though you only need a small amount of them and your body has the ability to store them. When you perform at a high level every day, your body’s stores can quickly be depleted, increasing the risk of deficiencies.
Instead of taking a regular dietary supplement, it is recommended to opt for a premium vitamin ADEK oil that contains fat-soluble vitamins in high doses. Just a drop can be sufficient to increase your intake of vitamins A, D, E, and K, which can positively impact your mental and physical performance.
Immer mehr Menschen ernähren sich im Alltag „pflanzenbasiert“, wobei auch gleichzeitig die Frage aufkommt, ob eine pflanzliche Ernährung genügend Eiweiß liefert. Es gibt mittlerweile viele Menschen, die