The human body doesn't just need proteins, fats and carbohydrates to live. It also needs organic compounds for other vital functions that the body cannot synthesize with the metabolism itself. This includes the vitamins that are ingested with food.

The only vitamin that the body can produce itself is vitamin D. But it is also not wrong to include this vitamin in your diet, as it counteracts a possible vitamin deficiency.

Vitamins are indispensable for the human organism as they help to build cells, blood cells, bones and teeth. The immune system is also influenced by vitamins. They regulate the utilization of carbohydrates, proteins (protein) and minerals and thus support the body's energy production.

Chemically speaking, vitamins are complex organic molecules made by plants, bacteria or animals. This is why vegetables, herbs and other plants are so important for human nutrition. To distinguish them, they are named with different letters. In contrast to humans, some animals can produce vitamin C themselves, for example, because their organism has the enzyme (L-gulonolactone oxidase) at its disposal.

In the 16th century, while studying diseases, scientists became aware that certain foods were needed to prevent certain diseases. But it wasn't until 1911 that there was evidence that vitamins really existed. A total of 1913 vitamins were detected between 1980 and 20, 13 of which are essential for humans.

The most important vitamins at a glance: