Daily Vitamin Requirements for Optimal Health

By: Michael Lam, MD, MPH

Daily Vitamin Requirements Dosage Guide

Carrots and the daily vitamin requirements Are you getting your daily vitamin requirements?  Have you ever wondered if you daily vitamin requirements are being met?  Learn about what you need to do to meet your daily vitamin requirements by reading below. Read the table below to discover your daily vitamin requirements.

NutrientIn the form ofReasonFunctionResearchOptimum DosageEquivalent in FoodToxicitySide Effects
Vitamin AVitamin ANatural animal sourceStrong Antioxidant; Essential for healthy skin, mucous membrane, and eyes5,000 I.UFrom Cod liver oil is most commonSafe dosage up to 20,000 I.UHeadaches, dry skin, and liver damage in dosage over 25,000 I.U
Vitamin ANatural beta caroteneMore effective than synthetic sourcesSame as above; also a strong antioxidantHundreds of studies, to determine your daily vitamin requirements, including one at Harvard shows that those taking 11,000 I.U. per day (¼ cup of carrot juice or 5 carrot sticks) have a 22% lower risk of heart disease than those getting less than 3,000 I.U. per day10,000 — 20,000 I.U1 cup of carrot juice contains 40,000 I.UNon toxic up to 100,000 I.U. a dayOver 100,000 I.U. a day causes a yellowish tone on the skin which disappears when stopped
Vitamin CAscorbic acid – corn freeNo reason to waste money on unproven mineral ascorbates or ascorbic palmate unless intake over 3,000 mg a dayKey antioxidant that supports collagen formation, blood vessels, immune defenses and adrenal function. Reduce downtime with common cold;In doing research concerning your daily vitamin requirements, a study of 11,000 Americans show that intake of 300 mg a day add 6 years to a man’s life and 2 years to a woman’s life. Cardiovascular disease decreases by 40%. Dr. Linus Pauling takes 18,000 mg for years and attribute 12 yrs of life extension to this vitamin1,200 — 3,000 mg (up to 10,000 mg have been safely taken for long period of time. For dosage above 3,000 mg a day, mineral ascorbics are recommended)1 orange has about 80 mg. So you need 15 oranges a day to get 1,200 mg of vitamin CNon toxic as water solubleSome experience slight diarrhea after several thousand milligrams, while others are not bother by then times this amount
Vitamin D3cholecalciferolReduced dosage to prevent toxicityNeeded for optimum calcium absorption and maintain of healthy bonesIf you are exposed to sunlight regularly, chances are you don’t need vitamin D supplement to get your daily vitamin requirements1,000 — 5,000 I.UCod liver oil is an excellent sourceToxic if over 40,000 I.U. for long period of timeContinuous overdose of 40,000 I.U. can lead to headaches, kidney stones, and deafness, and death
Vitamin ENatural form Water dispersible d-alphatocopherolsuccinateNatural form is more active, although more expensive than synthetic formsAntioxidant that protects red blood cell, arteries, eyes, liver, skin, breast, testes. Lowers LDL cholesterol*In those of 60 years old, taking 400 — 800 I.U. as one of your  daily vitamin requirements for 30 days results in improvement of immune function by 10 — 50%. *National Cancer Institute study show mouth and throat cancer risk decreased by 50% and lung cancer risk decreased by 50% in non-smokers after 6 months. * Risk of not taking = risk of smoking. * University of Texas study found that taking taking 800 I.U. of vitamin E for 3 months slashes LDL cholesterol oxidation and heart disease by 40%400 I.U. (up to 800 I.U. can be taken for normal optimum health)To get 400 I.U. a day requires 2 quart of corn oil, or 5 lbs of wheat germ, or 28 cups of peanuts (total 5,000 cal, mostly in fat)Toxic if over 3,000 I.UIntake of over 3,000 I.U. can cause headaches, diarrhea, increased blood pressure
B1ThiaminEnergy metabolism, nervous systemWorks with other B vitamins syngeristically, so make sure you utilize theses other vitamins in your daily vitamin requirements100 mgBrewer’s yeast, Brazil nuts, barley cereals, cooked green peas, cooked soybeans, cooked asparagusNon toxicNone
B2RiboflavinEnergy metabolism, skin, hair, nailWorks with other B vitamins synergistically; used in connection with canker sores, cataracts50 mgCooked liver, Brewer’s yeast, whole milk, cooked collard greens, raw spinach, cooked broccoli and asparagusNon toxicNone
B3Niacin and NiacinamideRelease energy from food; support mental function, cholesterol metabolism, sex hormone formationReduce cholesterol and triglyceride by meeting these daily vitamin requirements10 — 20 mg niacin and 100 — 250 mg of niacinamideFried liver, brewer’s yeast, cooked chicken, ground beef, cooked haddock, roasted peanuts, peanut butter, cooked green peas, baked white potatoes, cooked asparagus, cooked corn on cob, black-eyed peas, cooked collard greensNon toxic; some flushing with niacin; niacinamide more gentleRare liver problems have been reported in intake of over several thousand mg
B6PyridoxineAmino acid metabolism; nervous system, steroid hormone formation, fluid balanceHelps in depression, motion sickness and heart disease when meeting these daily vitamin requirements100 mgNon ToxicRare. At long term very high levels (2,000 mg a day), sensory nerve damage have been reported
B9Folic AcidRNA and DNA synthesis; homocysteinemetabolismHarvard of 16,000 women and 9,500 men show those who ate 700 mcg of folic acid a day had 2/3 of risk of getting pre-cancerous polyps in colon compare to those taking only 166 mcg per day.(The average American over 50 years old only takes in 130 mcg of folic acid per day) Smokers need 3 times more folic acid to have the same effect as nonsmoker.  This is important to keep in mind when utilizing your daily vitamin requirements800 mcgGenerally take enough from food as a reliable sourceNon-toxic; no side effects with 5,000 — 10,000 mcg intakeVery high dose of folic acid can mask the symptoms of B12deficiency and prenicious anemia
B12ColbalaminBlood formation; brain and nervous system;works with folic acid to keep blood homocysteine level low24% of people over 69 years old are deficient; 40% of those over 80 years old are deficient due to decrease in secretion of intrinsic factor necessary for absorption; Lack of B12 causes pseudo senility, with Alzheimer like symptoms One can have Normal blood test level and still lack B12 to carry out the functions100 — 1,000 mcgFound in all founds of animal originNon toxic
B5Pantothenic Acid or PantethineAdrenal function; healthy skin, energy productionUsed to to reduce cholesterol and triglyceride; Work together with B1, B1, and B3 to help make ATP100 — 500 mcgGreater amount found in primitive diets than in modern dietNon toxic; very large amounts (several grams a day) can cause diarrhea
LysineEssential amino acid needed for growth and tissue repairDr. Linus Pauling believes that lysine helps maintain healthy blood vessels. *A precursor of methionine and L-Carnitine and therefore beneficial to the heart500 — 1,000 mg as added protectionMost people consume enough lysineNon ToxicOver 2,000 mg to 3,000 mg have been linked to increased risk of gallstones and cholesterol
CholineCholine; also Phosphatidly choline / lecithin(10 — 20% PC)PC smells like fish; therefore use cholineTransport fat through liver and blood; component of neurotransmitterUsed in a wide variety of neurological and psychiatric disorders200 — 300 mcg per dayFound in soy bean, liver, oatmeal, cabbage, egg yolkNon-toxicDiarrhea or nausea when over several grams a day
InositolCell membrane structure; nervous system are affected by these daily vitamin requirements100 — 200 mg per dayNuts, beans, wheat, orange; in the form ofphyateNo toxicity has been reportedLarge amount reduces the absorption of calcium, iron andZinc
PABAA compound that is loosely considered to be a member of the vitamin B complexEnhance the effects of hormones by delaying their breakdown in the liver;helpful in promoting pregnancy and in connective tissue disorders such as scleroderma and dermatolmyositis; skin disease such as vitaligo and Peyronie’s Disease;50 mg per day for maintenance (500 mg — 12 grams for specific diseases)Found in grains and animal good8 grams a day may lower blood sugar, rash, fever, and in rare occasion, liver damage
Bioflavonoids (water soluble plant pigments) e.g. flavanones in citrus, isoflavones in soy, anthocyanins in wine, flavons in apples and teaCitrus bioflavonoids such as isoflavones, anthocyanins, flavonsHelp protect vitamin C and improve the absorption of vitamin C. Also inhibit bone tumor promoters and human cancercells;People who eat high levels of bioflavonoids have been found to have an overall lower risk of getting a wide variety ofcancer.  This is critical information when you are determining your daily vitamin requirements100 — 200 mg for maintenance; 1 gm fortreatmentIn healthy dietNo consistent toxicity other than a bioflavonoid called cianidanol which is NOT found in supplement
CalciumCalcium Carbonate (40% elemental calcium)Calcium citrate is better absorbed, but it only contains 21% elemental calcium; calcium lactate 13%; calcium gluconate 9%; Don’t take calcium made of bone-meal or dolomite which contain leadBone and teeth formation. Muscle contraction. Reduce risk of kidney stones by reducing absorption of oxalate. For a small number of people who absorb too much calcium there may be an increase in the risk of forming stones in high dosage. There is no truth to the myth that dairy source Calcium “doesn’t absorb”French study of 3,270 women of age 80 who took daily 1,200 mg of elemental calcium plus 800 I.U. of vitamin D3 show 43%less fracture of the hip (mortality rate of 20%) and 32% less fracture of the wrist, arm, and pelvis *most Americans only get half the calcium they need for anti-aging *less than 50% of children in U.S. get the recommended daily vitamin requirements of calcium deficiency affects both man and women need to star tat early age to maximize bone mass early on in life. *buildup happens most during adolescence. It is critical for girls to load up before puberty (10)and latest by age 25. getting calcium later in life can help prevent bone loss well after menopause and into old age * University of Minnesota found that intake of 2,000 mg of calcium a day normalize cell proliferation of colon of men and women at high risk of colon cancer300 mg for men; 500 mg for women; maintain calcium to magnesium ratio of 1: 1 (For best absorption, split the dosage to 500 mg at a time)A glass of skim milk contains 300 mg; a cup of yogurt contain up to 400 mg Tofu (not soy bean drink) an vegetables often provide enough calcium, and absorption is better than milkUp to 2,500 mg a day for long term cause no problem unless one has ulcer as too high calcium unabsorbed can cause “milk alkali” syndromeDo not take Tums as a form of Calcium as they neutralize the stomach acid needed for calcium absorption; Too much calcium can cause constipation vitamin D is necessary for Calcium absorption. Supplement of 100 — 400 I.U of vitamin D a day is recommended for those on calciumsupplement
IodinekelpNatural source high in iodineMetabolism of all cells and synthesis of thyroid hormone are supported with theses daily vitamin requirements150 mcgIodized salt and sea vegetable supply is generally adequateHigh dose (several milligrams per day) can interfere with normal thyroid function and may lead to goiter in some cases
MagnesiumChelatedBetter absorption; mg oxide is not absorbed are encouraged meeting these daily vitamin requirementsA strong antioxidant; Critical for Energy production (ATP); heart, muscle, and nervous system function required in secretion and function of insulin; Natures calcium channel blocker; Keeps bone strong by working with Calcium;Absorption decreases with age; Even with low RDA (300 mg) for Magnesium, only 25% of Americans meet that standard. You need 2,000 calories a day to get enough Magnesium Protect the heart by preventing coronary artery spasm and cardiac arthrymias; Taking 300 mg of mg daily decreases blood pressure by 8 — 10% after 9 weeks Nut (contain high mg level) lovers who eat nuts at least 5 times a week have half the risk of heart attack compare to those eating less than once a week500 mg — 1,000 mgWhole grain, nuts (almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts), and seeds; The higher the fat and sugar intake, the more mg neededOver 700 mg of daily elemental Magnesium can cause diarrheaDon’t take mg if you have Kidney problems or severe heartfailure
ZincAmino acid complexesBetter absorptionSupports immune function; wound repair; preserve vision; antioxidantDuration of cold symptoms are shortened in100 men and women taking zinc lozenges in a double blind study; Preliminary research suggested that people with Alzheimer’s disease should avoid zinc supplement, though this point has been controversial. More recently, preliminary evidence in four patients actually showed improved mental function with Zinc supplementation. So make sure you get zinc as part of your daily vitamin requirements30 mgOysters, meat, eggs, seafood, tofu are good sources; supplement need as insuranceHigh dose (over 300 mg per day) can impair immune functionZinc can inhibit copper, Iron, Calcium, and Magnesium absorption in high doses, so it is prudent to take minerals as part of a multi-mineral supplement
SeleniumAmino acid complexesBetter absorptionActivates an antioxidant enzyme called glutathione peroxidase which may protect the body from cancer; Strong antioxidant; curbs AIDS by encouraging the AIDS virus to make a protein to repress its own replication;Selenium level dropped 7% after age 60 and drop 24% after age 75 Double blind study of 1,300 people found that those given 200 mcg of yeast-based selenium per day for seven years had a 50% drop in cancer death rate compare to placebo group. People with decreased levels of selenium is associated with higher incidence of heart disease, cancer, and arthritis University of Arizona study of 1,700 elderly Americans show that those with low level of selenium are more apt to have polyps in the GI tract (33% compare to 9% in those with high level of selenium) 3,000 older person on selenium in a Dutch study show reduction of lung cancer risk by50% A large scale Finnish study showed that those with lowest level of selenium in their blood were 3 times more apt to die of heart disease*subjects taking 100 mg of selenium a day are less anxious, depressed, andtired200 mcg; most common multivitamin do not contain 200 mcg of seleniumBrazil nut that comes in a shell contain 100mcg (due to the soil). Shelled Brazil nut only contain 12 — 25 mg as it is grown in another part of Brazil; also in sunflower seeds, meat, seafood like tuna, swordfish, garlicToxic if over 2,500 mcg a day; with hair loss, liver damage, joint inflammation after 5,000 mcg a day
CopperAmino acid complexesBetter absorptionIt is part of the SOD antioxidant; needed to make ATP and collagenNot needed as it is plentiful in regular diet. As insurance, up to 3 mg day is acceptable; especially in people taking extra zinc supplement (which inhibit Cu absorption)Plentiful in meat, oysters, nuts, legumes, cereals, potatoes, vegetablesToxicity is unclear. Up to 3 mg a day is considered safePeople with Wilson’s Disease should not take Cu supplement at all. People drinking tap water (copper pipes) do not need more Cu. Cu improves absorption of Iron
ManganeseAmino acid complexesBetter absorptionNeeded for healthy skin, bone and cartilage formation and well as glucose tolerance. Also helps activate SOD, an important antioxidant enzyme20 mg take as added insuranceNuts, wheat germ, wheat bran, leafy green vegetables, pineapple and seeds are good sourcesNo toxicity or side effect in doses of 5 — 20 mg; Excessive intake can lead to rare side effects of dementia and psychiatric symptomsPeople with liver cirrhosis may not be able to properly excrete manganese so these people should not take Manganese supplement; Calcium, Iron, and possible Zinc reduces the absorption ofmanganese
ChromiumChromium piconinate (organic form)Better absorption; Cheaper inorganic forms such as chromium chloride are not as effective as it has to be converted first to the organic form to be effectiveHelp body maintain normal blood sugar level by increasing insulin efficiency; Helps increasing HDL and lowering overall cholesterol level; Promote rise in DHEA levelChromium picolinate has been shown to increase fat loss and lean muscle tissue gain; * Israel research show those with adult onset diabetes taking 200 mcg daily had their insulin resistance improve by 62% in women and 50% in men200 mcg for anti-aging (90% of all Americans are deficient in the minimum recommended dose of 50 mcg a day) only 24 mcg of chromium in 1,000 cal of foodBest source is brewer’s yeast; also in grains and cereals when not refined.; broccoli; lobster tail, liver, and mushroom have high levels Eating 33% of food in sugar cause 3 times more loss in chromium compare to those taking in 10% of food in sugarMost researches have demonstrated no toxicity up to 100 times the 200 mcg dosage. However, 1 isolated case of kidney failure after 600 mcg per day for 6 weeks, and a case of anemia, liver dysfunction appear after 1,200 — 2,400 mcg for 4 months; since only one case each of toxicity and toxicity is not the same, it remains unclear if these problems are caused by calcium picolinate or notAbsorption increased by vitamin C
MolybdenumAmino acid chelated complexBetter absorptionNeeded for proper function of certain enzyme and metabolism of iron;Preliminary evidence suggest that molybdenum, through its involvement in detoxifying sulfates, may reduce the risk of sulfate-reactive asthma attacks50 mcgLegumes, dark green lefty vegetables, and grainsVery safe up to 1,500 mcg per day, but it can interfere with Copper absorption; Excessive intake can lead to gout-like symptoms as it is needed to convert purine to uric acid
PotassiumChelated formBetter absorptionNeeded to regulate water balance, blood pressure, and neuro-muscular function; beneficial in chronic fatigue syndrome5,000 mgOne banana contains about 500 mgHigh potassium can produce stomach irritation
BoronAmino acid complexesBetter absorptionAssist calcium and bone metabolism and prevent osteoporosisResearch suggest that boron might be linked with decrease calcium in urine and may thus help with osteoporosis2 mgRaisins, prunes, and nutsSupplementary levels do not lead to accumulation I the body and thus lack of toxicity
SiliconAmino acid complexesBetter absorptionPlays a role in making and maintaining strong connective tissue and used in osteoporosis2.4 mgRegular diet provide 5 — 10 mg per dayHigh dietary intake is not associated with any toxic effect. Inhalation of large amount of silicon (in an industrial setting) can cause respiratory disease called silicosis
VanadiumAmino acid complexesBetter absorptionImprove glucose control in people with non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitusImprove glucose control in people with non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus according to a study of 8 diabetics supplemented with 100 mg of this mineral daily for 4 weeks25 mcgOptimum intake dose is unknown. Estimated is 10 — 20 mcg a dayVery limited info about toxicity. High blood levels have been linked to manic depressive mental disorders
IronNot presentStrong OxidantExcess iron have been linked to diabetes, cancer, increased risk of infection, lupus erythematosus, and exacerbation of rheumatoid arthritis. Absorption increased by vitamin C and decrease by calcium supplement, high fiber food, and caffeine
Super-oxide DismutaseLiver concentrateNatural sourceAntioxidant enzyme and is thought to present the first line of defense against free radical damage in red blood cellUsually coupled with zinc, copper or manganese in cells to prevent oxygen free radical change100 mg

Bananas and potassium daily vitamin requirements

Daily vitamin requirements

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Thank you!
Great article! It makes complete sense of what has been happening to me on Dr Wilsons program for 4 months. His shotgun approach does not work for severe cases, quite the opposite. I already feel slightly calmer not being on anything for now. Thank you again.


  • Sky says:

    Do you ‘know’ (have experience with) a rare condition called Mal de Debarqment Syndrome and how to overcome it? (I think it’s related to adrenal fatigue, but I can’t find any information about it.)

  • Jenny says:

    Do you know of a power vitamin/ supplement that you recommend that would have a good bit of this in one pill? I want to make sure that I get all of my vitamins when I do not eat the healthiest diet.