top of page

Vitamins & Nutrients

Vitamin C

  • Vitamin C and Disease: Insights from the Evolutionary Perspective by Clemens, Toth


    The role of vitamin C at the physiological and cellular levels is indisputable. In line with this, blood level of vitamin C is inversely related to disease parameters such as risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease and mortality in prospective cohort and correlational studies. At the same time, adequately powered clinical intervention studies consistently provide no evidence for a beneficial effect of supplementing vitamin C. Here we provide a framework to resolve this apparent conflict. Besides providing an overview of the widely-known facts regarding vitamin C, we review evidence that are of potential relevance but are seldomly mentioned in the context of vitamin C. We invoke the glucose-ascorbate antagonism (GAA) theory which predicts that as a consequence of their molecular similarity glucose hinders the entry of vitamin C into cells. Integrating data coming from research at the cellular level, those from clinical, anthropological and dietary studies, in the present hypothesis paper we propose an evolutionary framework which may synthesize currently available data in the relation of vitamin C and disease. We put forward that instead of taking vitamin C as a supplement, an evolutionary adapted human diet based on meat, fat and offal would provide enough vitamin C to cover physiological needs and to ward off diseases associated with vitamin C deficiency.

  • What about Vitamin C on Keto - Nutrita

    • Vitamin C is an essential dietary micronutrient with important roles. It maintains basic tissue structure and provides antioxidant action. However, depending on your health and the diet you follow, you may need to get very different amounts.

    • It’s not only about how much vitamin C you get but also about how little you need.

    • The requirement for vitamin C on a ketogenic diet is probably much lower than on a higher carbohydrate diet. 10 mg a day of vitamin C was determined to prevent scurvy in the context of someone eat a high-carb diet [21].

    • On a ketogenic diet, that figure is not known but it is likely quite a bit lower. The reason why is that glucose and vitamin C compete for the same receptor (GLUT1) to be taken up into cells [22].

    • The less glucose in the blood, the easier it is for cells to take up vitamin C.

    • Ketogenic diets are better than high carb diets to normalize blood sugars [23]. Another reason is that other antioxidants our uses like glutathione and uric acid get upregulated when our cells use less glucose and more fat or ketones to power us [242526].

    • Importantly, the ketogenic diet is known to decrease overall oxidative stress which spares the activity of antioxidants such as vitamin C [27].

  • C is for Carnivore by Amber O'Hearn

    Selected notes from the Lancet volume 123

    • It is known, but not widely acknowledged that fresh meat cures scurvy.

    • The USDA database is willfully wrong

    • The bottom line is that even on a diet of just muscle meat, you should expect to get enough vitamin C.

  • p 329. From a medical report from Mr. W. H. Neale, M.B. B.S. medical officer of the Eira, about an Arctic expedition:

    "For the boat journey we saved 40 lb. of tinned meat (per man), and 351b. of tinned soups(per man), 3cwt. of biscuit, and about 800lb. of walrus me it, which was cooked and soldered up by our blacksmith in old provision tins. About 80 lb. of tea were saved, enabling us to have tea night and morning till almost the day we were picked up. No lime-juice was saved. A few bottles of wine and brandy were secured, and kept for Mr. Leigh-Smith and invalids. All the rum was saved, and every man was allowed one-fifth of a gill per day until May 1st, 1882, when it was decided to keep the remaining eighteen gallons for the boats. One man was a teetotaler from January to June, and was quite as healthy as anyone else. Personally it made very little difference whether I took the allowance of "grog" or not. One of the sick men was also a teetotaler nearly all the time. During the boat journey the men preferred their grog when doing any hard work, a fact I could never agree to, but when wet and cold a glass of grog before going to sleep seemed to give warmth to the body and helped to send one to sleep. Whilst sailing, also, one glass of grog would give temporary warmth ; but everyone acknowledged that a mug of hot tea was far better when it was fit weather to make a fire. I do not think that spirits or lime-juice is much use as anti scorbutics ; for if you live on the flesh of the country even, I believe, without vegetables, you will run very little risk of scurvy. There was not a sign of scurvy amongst us, not even an anaemic face. I have brought home a sample of bear and walrus meat in a tin, which I intend to have analysed if it is still in good preservation ; and then it will be a question as to how it will be best to preserve the meat of the country in such a form as to enable a sufficient supply to be taken on long sledge journeys ; for as long as you have plenty of ventilation and plenty of meat, anyone can live out an Arctic winter without fear of scurvy, even if they lie for days in their beds, as our men were compelled to do in the winter when the weather was too bad to go outside (there being no room inside for more than six or seven to be up at one time).

  • p331, John Lucas: "Sir, —A propos the annotation appearing under the above heading in The Lancet of June 24th, pp. 1048-9, I would beg permission to observe that almost every medical man in India will be able to endorse the views of Dr. Moore, to which you refer. Medical officers of native regiments notice almost daily in their hospital practice that—to use your writer's words—"insufficient diet will cause scurvy even if fresh vegetable material forms a part of the diet, though more rapidly if it is withheld." Indeed, so far as my humble experience as a regimental surgeon from observations on the same men goes, I am inclined to think that the meat-eating classes of our Sepoys—to wit, the Mahomedans, especially those from the Punjaub—are comparatively seldom seen with the scorbutic taint ; while, on the contrary, the subjects are, in the main, vegetable feeders who are their non-meat-eating comrades, the Hindus (Parboos from the North- West Provinces and Deccan Mahrattas), especially those whose daily food is barely sufficient either in quality or quantity. A sceptic may refuse to accept this view on the ostensible reason that though the food of the meat-eating classes be such, it may, perchance, contain vegetable ingredients as well as meat. To this I would submit the rejoinder that as a matter of fact, quite apart from all theory and hypothesis, the food of these meat-eating classes does not always contain much, or any, vegetables. In the case of the semi-savage hill tribes of Afghanistan and Baluchistan, their food contains large amounts of meat (mutton), and is altogether devoid of vegetables. The singular immunity from scurvy of these races has struck me as a remarkable physiological circumstance, which should make us pause before accepting the vegetable doctrine in relation to scurvy et hoc genus omne."

  • p370 Charles Henry Ralphe "To the Editor of The Lancet. Sir, —I was struck by two independent observations which occurred in your columns last week with regard to the etiology of scurvy, both tending to controvert the generally received opinion that the exclusive cause of the disease is the prolonged and complete withdrawal of succulent vegetables from the dietary of those affected. Thus Mr. Neale, of the Eira Arctic Expedition, says : " I do not think that spirit or limejuice is of much use as an anti scorbutic ; for if you live on the flesh of the country, even, I believe, without vegetables, you will run very little risk of scurvy." Dr. Lucas writes: "In the case of the semi- savage hill tribes of Afghanistan and Beluchistan their food contains a large amount of meat, and is altogether devoid of vegetables. The singular immunity from scurvy of these races has struck me as a remarkable physiological circumstance, which should make us pause before accepting the vegetable doctrine in relation to scurvy." These observations do not stand alone. Arctic voyagers have long pointed out the antiscorbutic properties of fresh meat, and Baron Larrey, with regard to hot climates, arrived at the same conclusion in the Egyptian expedition under Bonaparte, at the end of last century."


  • p495 "SCURVY. Dr. Buzzard, in a letter which appeared in oar columns last week, considers the fact that the crew of the Eira were supplied with preserved vegetables tells against the supposition advanced by Mr. Neale, that if Arctic voyagers were to feed only on the flesh of the animals supplied by the country they would be able to dispense with lime-juice. The truth is, it is an open question with many as to the relative antiscorbutic properties of preserved vegetables, and whether under the circumstances in which the Eira's crew were placed they would have been sufficient, in the absence of lime-juice and fresh meat, to have preserved the crew from scurvy. A case in point is the outbreak that occurred on board the Adventure, in the surveying voyages of that vessel and the Beagle. The Adventure had been anchored in Port Famine for several months, and although "pickles, cranberries, large quantities of wild celery, preserved meats and soups, had been abundantly supplied," still great difficulty had been experienced in obtaining fresh meat, and they were dependent on an intermittent supply from wild-fowl and a few shell-fish. Scurvy appeared early in July, fourteen cases, including the assistant-surgeon, being down with it. At the end of July fresh meat was obtained; at first it seemed to prove ineffectual, but an ample supply being continued, the commander was able to report, by the end of August, " the timely supply of guanaco meat had certainly checked the scurvy." This is an instance in which articles of diet having recognised antiscorbutic properties proved insufficient, in the absence of lime-juice and fresh meat, and under conditions of exceptional hardship, exposure, and depressing influence, to prevent the occurrence of scurvy. So with the Eira, we believe that had they not fortunately been able to obtain abundant supplies of fresh meat, scurvy would have appeared, and that the preserved vegetables in the absence of lime-juice would have proved insufficient as antiscorbutics. This antiscorbutic virtue of fresh meat has long been recognised by Arctic explorers, and, strangely, their experience in this respect is quite at variance with ours in Europe. It has been sought to explain the immunity from the disease of the Esquimaux, who live almost exclusively on seal and walrus flesh daring the winter months, by maintaining that the protection is derived from the herbage extracted from the stomach of reindeer they may kill. In view, however, of the small proportion of vegetable matter that would be thus obtained for each member of the tribe, and the intermittent nature of the supply, it can hardly be maintained that the antiscorbutic supplied in this way is sufficient unless there are other conditions tending in the same direction. And of these, one, as we have already stated, consists probably in the fact that the flesh is eaten without lactic acid decomposition having taken place, owing either to its being devoured immediately, or from its becoming frozen. The converse being the case in Europe, where meat is hung some time after rigor mortis has passed off, and lactic acid develops to a considerable extent. This seems a rational explanation, and it reconciles the discrepancy of opinion that exists between European and Arctic observers with regard to meat as an antiscorbutic. In bringing forward the claims of the flesh of recently killed animals as an antiscorbutic, it must be understood that we fully uphold the doctrine that the exclusive cause of scurvy is due to the insufficient supply of fresh vegetable food, and that it can be only completely cured by their administration ; but if the claims advanced with regard to the antiscorbutic qualities of recently slaughtered flesh be proved, then we have ascertained a fact which ought to be of the greatest practical value with regard to the conduct of exploring expeditions, and every effort should be made to obtain it. Everything, moreover, conducive to the improvement of the sailor's dietary ought to receive serious consideration, and it has therefore seemed to us that the remarks of Mr. Neale and Dr. Lucas are especially worthy of attention, whilst we think the suggestion of the former gentleman with regard to the use of the blood of slaughtered animals likely to prove of special value."


  • p913 "Sir, —In a foot-note to page 49G of his " Manual of Practical Hygiene,", fifth edition, (London, Churchill, 1878), Parkes says : —"For a good deal of evidence up to 1818, I beg to refer to a review I contributed on scurvy in the British and Foreign. Medico-Chirurgical Review in that year. The evidence since this period has added, I believe, little to our knowledge, except to show that the preservation and curative powers of fresh meat in large quantities, and especially raw meat (Kane's Arctic Expedition), will not only prevent, but will cure scurvy. Kane found the raw meat of the walrus a certain cure. For the most recent evidence and much valuable information, see the Report of the Admiralty Committee on the Scurvy which occurred in the Arctic Expedition of 1875-76 (Blue Hook, 1877)." I think that the last sentence in the above is not Parkes' own, but that it must have been added by the editor in order to bring it up to the date of the issue of the current edition. The experience since then of the Arctic Expedition in the Eira coincides with these. I refer to that portion of the report where the author tells us that "our food consisted chiefly of War and walrus meat, mixing some of the bear's blood with the soup when possible." And again: "I do not think that, spirits or lime-juice is much use as an antiscorbutic, for if you live on the flesh of the country, even, I believe, without vegetables, you will run very little risk of scurvy. There was not a sign of scurvy amongst us, not even an anaemic face," (Lancet, Aug. 26th.) So that, as far as this question of fresh meat and raw meat and their prophylactic and curative properties are concerned, ample evidence will be found in other published literature to corroborate that of the Eira. But when you take up the question of the particular change which takes place in meat from its fresh to its stale condition, you will find a great deal of diversity and little harmony at opinion. Without taking up other authors on the subject, we stick to Parkes and compare his with Pr. I ; life'.-, views on this point. Parkes thought "fresh, and especially raw meat, is also useful, and this is conjectured to be from its amount of lactic acid ; but this is uncertain,"1 while on the other hand Dr. Ralfe repeats, as a probable explanation, too, of the reason of fresh meat being an anti scorbutic, but that it is due to the absence of lactic acid. For, from well-known chemical facts he deduces the following: — " In hot climates meat has to be eaten so freshly killed that no lime is allowed for the development of the lactic acid : in arctic regions the freezing arrests its formation. The muscle plasma, therefore, remains alkaline. In Europe the meat is invariably hung, lactic acid is developed freely, and the muscle plasma is consequently acid. If, therefore, scurvy is, as I have endeavoured to show ("Inquiry into the General Pathology of Scurvy"), due to diminished alkalinity of the blood, it can be easily understood that meat may be antiscorbutic when fresh killed, or frozen immediately after killing, but scorbutic when these alkaline salts have been converted into acid ones by lactic acid decomposition.'"-' The view of the alkalinity of the blood coincides with Dr. Garrod's theory, which, however, appears to have as a sine qua turn the absence of a particular salt- namely, potash. I am inclined to think that, taking into account the nervous symptoms which are not infrequently associated with a certain proportion of scorbutic cases, resulting probably from the changes taking place in the blood, not unlike those which occur in gout and rheumatism, there must be some material change produced in the sympathetic system. In many of the individuals tainted with scurvy there were slight and severe attacks of passing jaundice in the cases which occurred in Afghanistan. Can we possibly trace this icteric condition to this cause? This is but a conjecture so far. But there certainly is in Garrod's observations an important point which, if applicable to all countries, climates, and conditions of life, is sufficiently weighty to indicate the necessity for farther research in that direction, and that point is this : the scorbutic condition disappeared on the patient being given a few grains of potash, though kept strictly on precisely the same diet which produced scurvy. —I am, Sir, yours truly, Ahmedabad, India, 30th Sept., 1882. JOHN C. LUCAS."

  • Scott and Scurvy

    "More troubling evidence came several years later, during the Jackson-Harmsworth Expedition to Franz-Josef Land in 1894. Members of this expedition spent three years on a ship frozen into the pack ice. Koettlitz, their chief physician, describes what happened:

    "The expedition proper ate fresh meat regularly at least once a day in the shape of polar bear. The people on the ship had, however, a prejudice against this food, which certainly was not particularly palatable, and insisted, against all advice, upon eating their preserved and salted meat. This meat I occasionally noticed to be somewhat "high" or "gamey", and afterwards heard that it was often so. The result was that, though I visited the ship every day, and personally saw that each man swallowed his dose of lime juice (which was made compulsory, and was of the best quality), the whole ship’s company were tainted with scurvy, and two died."

    This pattern of fresh meat preventing scurvy would be a consistent one in Arctic exploration. It defied the common understanding of scurvy as a deficiency in vegetable matter. Somehow men could live for years on a meat-only diet and remain healthy, provided that the meat was fresh.

  • Not the Collagen, but the Carnitine? by Amber L O'Hearn

A Detailed Analysis of Nutrients, Anti-Nutrients and Bioavailability

Vitamin Levels in Human Tissue - Are Humans Deficient?

Generally vitamin levels were lower in sick people, and in the case of vitamin D3, the levels of the Komi herdsmen were almost twice as high as the levels of the Komi town dwellers. Vitamin B6 and biotin (Vitamin B7) were both lower in tumors as well. Regarding Vitamin A, B12, C, B6, B7 and B2, the studies were done on "normal" people, so it is not related to the vitamin levels of carnivorous humans. Vitamin A and B12 are great examples of the massive differences between the low end and the high end, and just how much Vitamin A, B12 (along with other vitamins not mentioned) the human body can store (I would be interested if anyone has any information on the vitamin/mineral levels in people like the Inuit/Komi herdsmen. Obviously the ones that eat their ancestral diet.) In comparison, those sick and ill usually had low vitamin A and B12 stores, making them even weaker. Low vitamin/minerals levels could be a potential cause for many diseases, while also hindering the person's ability to heal said diseases.

A Detailed Analysis of Nutrients in Animal Foods

Below is a detailed analysis of the nutrient composition of different animal foods, showing that, indeed, animal foods can have higher absolute vitamin/mineral values and the advantage of a higher bioavailability in addition to being low inflammatory foods.

%DV per 100 grams from highest source
Vitamin A (retinol in animal foods, more bioavailable)
Liver, eggs, kidneys, high quality fats,cod liver oil
Liver (300-60000%DV NOTE: The higher end includes polar bear liver, which contains 15,000 – 30,000 units in each gram. You could technically eat polar bear liver by the grams and perhaps avoid adverse side effects, as a single teaspoon would “only” have 150,000 units (the reports of polar explorers dying were never confirmed, as the people that ate it that got sick recovered later on. Polar bear liver is also supposedly high in cadmium and arsenic in some cases, so it would probably be wise to only eat small amounts if you ever do try polar bear liver.) - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
Vitamin C
Organs, blood, small amounts in muscle
Spleen (75%DV, 10.5 times higher than an apple)
Vitamin D3(found only in animal foods)
Organs, eggs, fish, high quality animal fats
Cod liver oil (2500%DV), from entirely natural sources (10-400%DV) - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
Vitamin E
High quality fats, eggs, organs (bone marrow)
Similar amounts found in foods (10-20%DV)
Vitamin K2(Found only in fermented and animal foods)
Fermented foods, organs, high quality fats, eggs
Liver (150-500%DV) Can be increased by aging/fermenting any food
Vitamin B1 (Thiamin)
Organs, muscle, eggs
Organs (10-70%DV)
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)
Organs, muscle, eggs
Organs (up to 200%DV)
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)
Organs, muscle, eggs
Organs (up to 100%DV)
Vitamin B4 (Choline)
Organs, muscle, eggs
Egg yolk (up to 120%DV)
Vitamin B5 (Panthotenic Acid)
Organs, muscle, eggs
Organs (up to 100%DV)
Vitamin B6 (pyridoxal and pyridoxamine found only in animal foods)
Organs, muscle, eggs, blood
Organs (20-100%DV)
Vitamin B7 (Biotin, almost nonexistent in plants, except for yeast)
All animal foods, highest in organs.
Liver (57%DV)
Vitamin B8 (Inositol)
Organ meats, found in smaller amounts in other animal foods.
There is no official RDA for inositol, which is not recognized as a vitamin. It is also difficult to list recommended daily intakes, as it is made in the body.
Vitamin B9 (Folate)
Organs, muscle, eggs
Organs (up to 100%DV)
Vitamin B10 (PABA)
Vitamin B10 is found abundantly in plant and animal sources.
The rate at which humans need PABA or whether they require it at all seems to be highly debated, but it is commonly used in spite of this.
Vitamin B11 (PHGA)
Vitamin B11 is present in both animal and plant kingdom. Highest sources are organs.
Salicylic acid is an important beta hydroxy vitamin also known as Vitamin B11. It is a crystalline and organic acid. Salicylic acid is obtained from the metabolism of salicin. This vitamin is also found in plants where it plays role in the growth and development of the plants as well as in various other functions such as photosynthesis, ion uptake and in transpiration. It is synthesized in the human body by the phenylalanine amino acid.
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin, found only in animal foods)
Organs, muscle, eggs
Organs (up to 1500%DV) - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
Vitamin B13 (Orotic Acid)
High in all meat.
Vitamin B13 is not really recognized as a vitamin, since it is manufactured by the body by intestinal flora. It is primarily used for metabolization of folic acid and vitamin B12. It assists the absorption of essential nutrients especially calcium and magnesium and helps the production of genetic material. It may be beneficial after a heart attack and has been used in conditions such as multiple sclerosis and chronic hepatitis. It is also reported to prevent liver-related complications and premature aging.
Vitamin B14
Found in all meat (muscle, organs) and eggs.
There is currently little knowledge about this vitamin B14. It was first isolated from wine. This vitamin is actually found to be a metabolite of xanthopterin. However, it was said by a biochemist Earl R. Norris xanthopterin was the Vitamin B14. It is thought to be similar to vitamin 10 and vitamin 11. It is very helpful in formation of cells of the body. It provide resistance to combat anemias. Vitamin B14 provide enhancement of anti tumor growth of protein such as pterin phosphate.
Vitamin B15 (Pangamic acid)
Found in blood.
Pangamic acid might serve as a methyl donor to help form certain amino acids. Vitamin B15 may play a role in glucose oxidation and cell respiration, says Elson M. Haas, M.D. and founder and director of the Preventative Medical Center of Marin. The claim is it may help hypoxia by increasing oxygen to the heart and other muscles. With vitamins C and E, vitamin B15 may act as an antioxidant, helping to protect cells from oxidation. Pangamic acid is also thought to stimulate the nervous system and promote liver function, which may contribute to detoxification.
Vitamin B16 (DMG)
Physiologically, vitamin B-16 is a byproduct of choline. It circulates in your body in small amounts for only seconds at a time. You can find vitamin B-16 naturally in both animal and plant cells and in certain foods including liver.
Vitamin B-16 is a derivative of the amino acid glycine; it has a similar chemical structure to a water-soluble vitamin. The structural formula of vitamin B-16 is (CH3)2NCH2COOH. In your body, your small intestine absorbs vitamin B-16, and then your liver converts it into other useful metabolites. Vitamin B-16 also functions as a building block to DNA, amino acids, neurotransmitters and hormones.
Organs, muscle, eggs
Fish (%DV not established)
Bones, bone marrow, dairy, eggs, blood, smaller amount in other animal foods
Bones (1000-3000%DV) - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
Iron (heme iron in animal foods, more bioavailable)
Organs, muscle, eggs
Spleen and blood(250%DV) - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
All foods except pure fat
Mollusks (70%DV)
All foods except pure fat
Blood and spleen (10-15%DV)
All foods except pure fat
Oysters, beacuse of seawater (30-100%DV), otherwise blood and spleen
All foods except pure fat
Bones (500-1500%DV) - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
Organs, muscle, eggs
Liver (500-700%DV), otherwise mollusks (1000-1400%DV) - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
Organs, muscle, eggs, oysters
Mollusks (1200%DV) - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
Organs, muscle, eggs
Arctic mammal liver (potentially poisonous because of cadmium and arsenic, see vitamin A for details, 1000%DV), otherwise kidneys (200%DV) - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
Higher amounts in organs and oysters
Organs and oysters(20%DV)
Muscle, organs, eggs
Thyroid gland (10000%DV) - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
The highest source of chloride is salt, as only traces are found in most foods. All meat provides easily assimilated chloride. Lacto-fermented beverages and bone broths are usually cited as sources of chloride. Other sources include celery and coconut.
3400 mg is equal to 100%DV.
Sulphur (found mostly in animal foods)
Scallops (570 mg per 100 grams) and lobsters (510 mg per 100 grams) are the best sources. High amounts found in organs (around 300 mg per 100 grams). Eggs, muscle and dairy also have relatively high amounts.
Although there is no official RDA for sulfur, it is a critical nutrient. Daily intake is usually 800 to 900 milligrams of sulfur per day. Scallops (570 mg per 100 grams) and lobsters (510 mg per 100 grams) are the best sources. - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
Boron (found in higher levels in plants and fish, shellfish)
All animal foods, higher in plants.
There is no Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for boron since an essential biological role for it has not been identified. People consume varying amounts of boron depending on their diet. Diets considered to be high in boron provide approximately 3.25 mg of boron per 2000 kcal per day. Diets considered to be low in boron provide 0.25 mg of boron per 2000 kcal per day. Most meat contain 0.1 mg of boron per 100 grams. Fish and shellfish contain higher levels.
All animal foods.
Egg yolks (152%DV), meat (50%DV) - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
Cobalt (requires vitamin B12 to be absorbed, which is found only in animal foods)
A cobalt atom resides in the center of the vitamin B12 molecule. Despite green leafy vegetables having a cobalt content of 20-60 mcg/100 grams, while organs have 15-25 mcg/100 grams, it is assimilated only by intake of vitamin B12. Because of this, cobalt deficiency occurs most frequently in vegetarians and vegans.
Cobalt are assimilated only by intake of vitamin B12, and not in its ionic or metallic form.Therefore, there is no clear recommended amounts of cobalt because there are just recommendations for vitamin B12.In this vitamin it is absorbed in the amount of 5-8 micrograms per day. Highest animal source are organ meats (15-25 mcg/100 grams)
Meat and dairy
Germanium is a trace mineral with no Recommended Daily Amount (RDA) established.
Small amounts in eggs, dairy. Very small amounts in muscle. Higher in organs, very high in liver.
Liver (125%DV)
Silicon (found mostly in plants, other than organs)
Organ meats are quite a common source of silicon, while muscle, eggs and dairy is pretty low. In general higher in plants, with the exception of organs.
There is no official recommended daily amount of silicon, but it is assumed that an adequate daily intake is 5 to 10 milligrams. In average diet is intaked only 1-1.5 milligrams a day, so it is recommended a higher intake of raw foods containing silicon or silicon supplements. Organ meats are the highest animal source.
Vanadium (found in highest amounts in Radishes, Dills and wheat grains. Other plant sources seem to be inferior to the animal sources)
Organs, muscle, fish
The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for vanadium has not been determined. Liver is the highest animal source.
Cholesterol (Found only in animal foods)
All animal foods
Brain (1000%DV) - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
DHA/EPA (Found only in animal foods)
Fish roe, brain, high quality fats
Fish roe (2-7 grams), brain (1 gram) - Highest of all foods, including plants and mushrooms
Vitamin F
Better known as essential fatty acids, or EFAs, Vitamin F is composed of two types of fatty acids: linoleic and alpha-linolenic. The body cannot produce EFAs by itself, so you have to get them from food sources where they are known as unsaturated fatty acids or polyunsaturated fatty acids. Fish, high quality fats and meat, brain, fish roe, high quality eggs, high quality bone marrow all contain omega 3-s.
Highest amounts in fish roe and brain.
High in all meat, dairy and eggs
Found in all foods, high levels in organs. Higher than in plants.

The Bioavailability and Absorption of Nutrients in Animal and Plant Foods

Below is a detailed analysis of the bioavailability of different plant foods and animal foods, showing that plant forms of nutrients are inferior to animal ones, along with a lower bioavailability in many cases.

Animal Form
Plant Form
Vitamin A
Retinol (100% bioavailability. Retinol is often found in foods that contain fat, which further increases absorption compared to Beta-Carotene)
Beta-Carotene (must be converted into Retinol, 16.6% bioavailability if perfectly healthy, various digestive issues and diseases further reduce the conversion to Retinol; children, especially infants, don’t make the conversion at all. 0% bioavailability for infants and children)
Vitamin D
D3 (100% bioavailability. D3 is often found in foods that contain fat, which further increases absorption compared to D2. Studies also shows that vitamin D3 offers a noticeable decrease in overall mortality, significantly surpassing D2 in reducing death rates from all causes)
D2 (33% bioavailability)
Vitamin K
K2 (100% bioavailability. Because of the FDA, it can’t be listed as Vitamin K in the Nutrition Facts Label per FDA. K2 is often found in foods that contain fat, which further increases absorption compared to K1. Studies show it is better at blood clotting, preventing bone fractures than K1, although more evidence is needed for certainty.)
K1 (10% bioavailability. Vitamin K2’s long side chain allows it to circulate in the blood longer than K1. Where vitamin K1 may stay in the blood for several hours, some forms of K2 can remain in the blood for days. Some researchers believe that the longer circulation time of vitamin K2 allows it to be better used in tissues located throughout the body. Vitamin K1 is primarily transported to and used by the liver.)
Vitamin B6
Pyridoxal, Pyridoxamine and Pyridoxine ( Pyridoxamine, however, has some functions in the body that pyridoxine and pyridoxal do not. Pyridoxamine is a chelating agent. It can interact with and trap heavy metals. One of the causes of aging, especially in the skin, is the formation of “advanced glycation end-products.” Any cell in the body can become essentially sugar-coated by interaction with glucose from the bloodstream. In diabetics, of course, the problem is much worse, since there is more sugar in the bloodstream to “caramelize” cells. The sugar on these cells is not a problem until it begins to break down. The advanced glycation end-products release tremendous amounts of free radicals, so many that the cell’s energy center, the mitochondria, “burn out” when they use oxygen to make energy. The cell dies, and when enough cells die, tissues and organs don’t function as well. This is the underlying chemical process beneath wrinkling, cataracts, atherosclerosis, certain kinds of kidney failure, the complications of diabetes, and possibly Alzheimer’s disease (although there are other kinds of cell destruction also involved in Alzheimer’s). Stopping the formation of advanced glycation end products, if started soon enough, stops these diseases of aging. That’s where pyridoxamine comes in. It stops a kind of chemical reaction known as the Maillard reaction. You may not know the chemistry, but you have definitely seen a Maillard reaction in the real world. This combination of sugars and amino acids is what makes toast brown, or tater tots crunchy when they’ve been fried, or puts the “burn” on roasted meat or barbecue, or gives maple syrup its brown color. At a cellular level, pyridoxamine keeps your cells from becoming toast.)
Pyridoxine ( It’s important to note, that the pyridoxine available in plant sources often has a low bioavailability (the vitamin is bounded to protein, resulting in the inefficient delivery to its site of action in the body). For this reason, it is better to choose food sources of animal origin if you need to increase your vitamin B6 intake.)
Vitamin B12
Found in large amounts in animal foods.
Not found in plant foods.
Heme Iron (100% Bioavailability)
Non-Heme Iron ( 5.9-57% bioavailability, food high in heme iron and Vitamin C can improve your body’s ability to absorb non-heme iron. Phytic acid and tannins in plants reduce absorption.)
Most of it is stored in muscles, but significant amounts are also concentrated in the brain. (Improvements in physical performance and improvements in brain function).
Not found in plant foods.
Carnosine is an antioxidant that is concentrated in the muscles and brain (It is very important for muscle function, and high levels of carnosine in muscles are linked with reduced muscle fatigue and improved performance)
Not found in plant foods.
Taurine is a sulfur compound found in various body tissues, the muscles and organs. (Taurine may have various benefits for heart health such as lowering cholesterol and blood pressure). Taurine is only found in animal foods such as fish, seafood, meat, poultry and dairy products.
Not found in plant foods. Small amounts are produced by the body. However, dietary taurine may play a major role in the maintenance of taurine levels in the body. Levels of taurine are significantly lower in vegans than in meat eater.
Found in all foods, very high in organs, eggs ,fish roe. Highest in brain.
Not found in plant foods.
Brain and fish roe are the highest source. Other high quality fats , eggs and dairy contain DHA. (It is important for normal brain development and function, deficiency in DHA can have adverse effects on mental health and brain function, especially in children. In addition, inadequate DHA intake in pregnant women may adversely affect brain development in the child. DHA can increase concentration, reduce memory loss and improve your cognitive function. DHA can reduce your risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Those who get more DHA into their diet, are less prone to stress, depression, and anger. A lot of studies have been done for those prone to stress, depression, and angry. Those who got more DHA into their diet have shown improvement.)
Not found in plant foods. In the body, DHA can also be made from the omega-3 fatty acid ALA, which is found in high amounts in flaxseeds, chia seeds and walnuts. However, the conversion of ALA to DHA is very inefficient (3-10% at most. With a diet rich in n-6 PUFA, conversion is reduced by 40 to 50%, so only around 1.5% to 5% at most.) For this reason, vegetarians and vegans often have much lower DHA levels than meat eaters.
Found in animal and plant foods. (Highest animal source are bones/bone meal, bone marrow, eggs and dairy second).
Found in animal and plant foods. ( Phytic acid in plants and oxalates reduce absorption, can cause Calcium Oxalate kidney stones).
Found in animal and plant foods. (Mollusks are the highest animal source)
Found in animal and plant foods. (Phytic acid and tannins in plants reduce Zinc absorption)
Found in animal and plant foods. (Mollusks are the highest animal source)
Found in animal and plant foods. (Oxalates and phytic acid in plants reduce Magnesium absorption).
Copper and Phosphorus
Found in animal and plant foods. (Mollusks are the highest animal source, second is liver. For phosphorus, the highest source is bones/bone meal)
Found in animal and plant foods. (Phytic acid in plants reduce Copper and Phosphorus absorption).
bottom of page