(3) Symptoms of the GI tract are inflammation of the mouth and stomach,
causing diarrhea.The tongue becomes red and swollen (beefy tongue) and may
ulcerate. Headache, dizziness, insomnia, depression, and loss of memory are signs of
deficiency in the CNS.
i. Pantothenic Acid. Pantothenic acid is a precursor of coenzyme A, an
enzyme that transports two-carbon groups in metabolism of fats, protein, and
carbohydrates. Pantothenic acid is found in most food, so deficiency states are hard to
(1) Biotin acts as a coenzyme in the transport of carbon dioxide in fatty acid
synthesis. Sources are meats, vegetables, and cereals.
(2) A deficiency state is difficult to demonstrate in man, but does include
loss of hair, dermatitis, and loss of muscular control.
k. Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid).
(1) Vitamin C plays a role in cellular respiration, the synthesis of collagen,
and the absorption of iron from the gut. A few sources are citrus fruits, tomatoes,
potatoes, and leafy foods.
(2) The deficiency state, scurvy, is mainly seen as a result of the failure to
synthesize collagen. The gums become spongy and bleed easily. Capillary walls
increase in fragility and hemorrhage when subjected to mechanical stress or trauma.
Lesions of growing bones lead to disunion, freedom of movement, and traumatic
fragmentation. Wound healing is also impaired.
a. Mineral Needs. As with vitamins, mineral needs vary from patient to patient,
depending on their age, condition, and nutritional state. Some are needed in doses
more than 100 mg a day, while others are needed in small amounts.
b. Iron. Iron is essential for oxygen transport and in enzyme systems
concerned with electron transfer (cytochromes). Food sources that contain iron are
organ meats, yeast, and wheat germ. A deficiency of iron results in anemia.
c. Fluoride. Fluoride occupies the anionic spaces in the enamel apatite crystal
surface of teeth. How it retards dental caries (cavities) is not known. Sources of
fluoride include plants and water. People who are deficient in fluoride suffer from
excessive dental caries.