Garden for Essential Vitamins and Minerals

Susan Glaese recommends you garden for essential vitamins and minerals, growing plants high in vitamins and minerals improves health naturally.


| June/July 2000


Garden for Essential Vitamins and Minerals

The following listing contains major plant sources of important garden essential vitamins and minerals. The information is approximate: It's impossible to assign an exact nutrient value to a crop, since growing and eating conditions vary widely. Not all the scientific test results agree, either. Nor does everyone agree that the government's RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) of each vitamin and mineral is appropriate. The lists below are generally in descending order — the higher a food is in a list, the more of that nutrient it contains. Where I found specific values for certain crops, I added them in parentheses (figures refer to one cup of the food unless otherwise noted.) The abbreviations IU, mgs, and DGLVs stand for international units, milligrams and dark green leafy vegetables, respectively.

Vitamin A, or carotene: Good for the skin; mucous membranes in mouth, urinary tract, and respiratory and digestive systems; and night vision. RDA: 5,000 IU.

Primary Sources: Carrots (one raw carrot= 7,930 IU; the Juwarot variety has the highest vitamin A content), sweet potatoes, most DGLVs (spinach = 14,850 IU), lamb's-quarters, dandelions, violet leaves, parsley, garden cress, butternut and hubbard squashes, pumpkins and cantaloupes.

Vitamin B, or thiamine: Instrumental in the body's oxidation of carbohydrates and promotes health of nervous system, digestion and appetite. RDA: 1.2 to 1.5 mg.

Primary Sources: Sunflower seeds (2.84 mg), millet, turnip greens, dried peas and beans (pintos = 1.6 mg, others average 1.1 mg), sesame seeds, soybeans.

Vitamin B2, or riboflavin: Essential for eyesight; promotes metabolism of lipids and tryptophan. RDA: 1.2 to 1. 7 mg.





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