How do vitamins get absorbed in our body?« Back to Questions List

Vitamins help our bodies function properly. They're crucial to the activities of our cells, our organs, immune systems and general energy supply. When we take food containing vitamins, our body absorbs them depending on their type. There are two types of vitamins – fat soluble and water soluble. Vitamin absorption generally happens in the small intestine.


Vitamin B and C are water-soluble vitamins. Vitamin C has active molecules that pick them up in the small intestine and carry the vitamin through the intestine’s cell walls. Thus they get deposited in the body entering the blood stream. Because they are water soluble, they don't require stomach acids to enable absorption. Also they leave the body every day in urine. In addition to helping the immune system, vitamin C has been known to aid in the prevention of heat exhaustion.


Vitamin B’s absorption works a bit differently. They're bound to proteins and therefore require a protein breakdown triggered by stomach acids. Absorption of most of the B vitamins happen further down in the small intestine.


Vitamin A- Structure


Vitamin A, D, E and K are fat-soluble ones that need to dissolve in fat before they can make it into the body. The liver secretes bile acids that digest fat. When the bile acids break down the fat the vitamins are dissolved in, it move with the fat through the intestinal wall, into the body, and finally end up in the liver and in body fat, where they're stored until they're needed (much like fat). Fat-soluble vitamins, therefore, don't require daily consumption. They stick around inside the body.


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