Simple English Listening

E16: What Do Vitamins Do? Health, Body, Nutrition (Pre-intermediate English)

November 08, 2020 Tristan Palumbo
Simple English Listening
E16: What Do Vitamins Do? Health, Body, Nutrition (Pre-intermediate English)
Chapters
Simple English Listening
E16: What Do Vitamins Do? Health, Body, Nutrition (Pre-intermediate English)
Nov 08, 2020
Tristan Palumbo

Learn 30+ HEALTH vocabulary. The video with subtitles, pictures and definitions is here: https://youtu.be/DyUM8LArb2U

Here, I speak in SIMPLE English about exciting topics. The best way to learn is to listen to as much English as possible which is ONE level above your level. This way you pick up maximum amounts of new language and pronunciation naturally.

These podcasts are for pre-intermediate, intermediate and upper-intermediate learners. 

My name is Tristan, from England. I'm a native speaker and I've been a qualified English teacher for nearly 10 years and taught in five countries - UK, Italy, South Korea, Japan and Vietnam. I have post-graduate qualifications in education and English-teaching. 


Show Notes Transcript

Learn 30+ HEALTH vocabulary. The video with subtitles, pictures and definitions is here: https://youtu.be/DyUM8LArb2U

Here, I speak in SIMPLE English about exciting topics. The best way to learn is to listen to as much English as possible which is ONE level above your level. This way you pick up maximum amounts of new language and pronunciation naturally.

These podcasts are for pre-intermediate, intermediate and upper-intermediate learners. 

My name is Tristan, from England. I'm a native speaker and I've been a qualified English teacher for nearly 10 years and taught in five countries - UK, Italy, South Korea, Japan and Vietnam. I have post-graduate qualifications in education and English-teaching. 


Hello smiling, lovely English learners,

Today you will learn what the different vitamins do in simpler English.

There is so much new vocabulary today to help you talk about your body, your health and different foods, vocabulary including:

nervous system, spine, diet, cells, immune system, water-soluble, fat-soluble, kidneys, excrete, store, nutrients, liver, wound, citrus fruits, animal products, deformity, clot, minerals and many other foods.

Welcome to Simple English Listening, I'm Tristan, I've been a qualified language teacher for about ten years. We release podcasts every Sunday and Youtube videos every third Sunday to help you learn English. Information about these are in the video description and comments. Please subscribe and hit the bell so you do not miss any episodes, any new opportunities to learn with us.

If you're listening to the podcast version today, I suggest joining us here on the Simple English Listening' Youtube channel because I'll show many pictures and video clips to help you understand the new vocab.

We will learn about vitamins: A, C, D, E, K and all the B vitamins and learn the differences between water-soluble and fat-soluble vitamins, as well as which foods contain each vitamin. 

Vitamins do hundreds of important functions in your body. They are necessary to be healthy and strong! If we don't have enough, there's more chance we can get sick, such as getting a cold or having the flu. Also, we can get diseases! For example, rickets comes from not enough vitamin D, scurvy comes from not enough vitamin C. Scurvy used to be common in the Navy and among sailors. Not enough vitamin A can leave a person blind (not able to see - blind).

Today's information comes from the website of the NHS. The NHS is the National Health Service of the UK, so the website is government-run. I also cross-checked the info with some other websites.

Ok, let's go!

The two types of vitamins are water-soluble vitamins and fat-soluble vitamins.

Water-soluble vitamins are vitamins B 1,2,3, 6, 7, 12 and vitamin C. Water-soluble vitamins travel freely in your body. If you have too much water soluble vitamins it is usually not a problem. Your kidneys will excrete them (your kidneys will get rid of them). Your 'kidneys' are the organs that clean and filter your blood and create urine. Urine is the more polite, and formal word for pee pee. Urine. And kidneys, you have two kidneys, one on each side of your lower back. So, if you have too many water-soluble vitamins, your kidneys will excrete them as urine. Lots of new words for you there!

However, fat-soluble vitamins cannot be excreted, cannot be gotten rid of so easily.

Fat-soluble vitamins are vitamins A, D, E and K

Fat-soluble vitamins are stored (are kept) in your liver and in the fat of your body. Your liver is the organ, which does many many things, including cleaning your blood, creating and removing chemicals in your body and it stores (it keeps) important nutrients. 'Nutrients' are vitamins and minerals, protein carbohydrates etc..- these are nutrients. 

Now, your body cannot excrete fat-soluble vitamins easily. They cannot be urinated out like water-soluble vitamins. If you have too many fat-soluble vitamins it can be dangerous but this is rare ('rare' - it is uncommon).

The main difference between water and fat-soluble vitamins are that you must regularly eat water-soluble vitamins because they are not stored in your body. You should eat them daily, or at least every few days. However, fat-soluble vitamins can be eaten weeks and months apart because you body can store them - in your liver and in your fat.

The first vitamin we'll discuss is the famous, the one and only vitamin C. Vitamin C is what you see most in pill or tablet-form. Your body does not naturally make vitamin C and it can only store (can only keep) a very tiny amount of vitamin C in your liver so, you need to take it often.

Vitamin C helps keep our cells healthy. 'Cells' are the tiniest parts of us. All living things are made of cells and there are not just billions of cells in our body, but trillions, such as brain cells, blood cells, bone cells, fat cells - 37 trillion cells in the human body to be exact!

Vitamin C keeps your cells healthy and also it helps us heal faster when we are wounded - wounded - a wound is when you get cut and your skin breaks and bleeds. Some people also say that vitamin C helps defend us, helps protects us from getting a cold or flu, helps us recover faster.

Vitamin C is in many foods including citrus fruits. 'Citrus fruits' are fruits such as oranges, lemons and grapefruits. 'Grapefruits' are the very very big citrus fruits that some people have for breakfast. They taste extremely sour. Also, peppers, peppers, strawberries, blackcurrants, blackcurrants and broccoli all have high levels of vitamin C. 

Next, the B vitamins, and there are many kinds! Vitamins B1 , 2 ,3 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 9, 12.

There are so many Bs because, people used to believe all the Bs were the same vitamin. All the same vitamin. Since then, scientists have decided they are all, actually, separate vitamins and some B vitamins aren't even classified as vitamins anymore. Science said goodbye to vitamins B 4, 8, 10 as well as vitamins F-J, so, we won't talk about them as they are now not considered to be vitamins anymore.

B1 helps our body get energy from food and it helps our nervous system. Our 'nervous system' is what controls all the basic functions of our body such as breathing, walking, thinking, feeling etc.. The control centre of your nervous system is your brain, in your head. The highway of the nervous system is your spine. Your 'spine' is the collection of bones running down your back. Your spine is connected to all your nerves. All together, these are the nervous system. 

B2 and B3 have similar affects to B1. They help you release energy from food and they help your nervous system as well keep your skin and eyes healthy. B2 is in milk, eggs, cereals. Cereals are what some people have for breakfast, they are made of corn, wheat and rice, basically, grains that grow in big fields.  B3 can also be found in cereals, corn, rice, wheat etc.. but also in meat, fish and eggs.

Interesting fact about B2 - it can be destroyed! By direct sunlight! So, keep your B2 out of direct sunlight! In a cupboard, or in the fridge maybe.

Next, B6, also helps release energy from food, but also helps your blood carry oxygen around the body. It is found in meats, fish, nuts, soya beans, bananas, oats, milk.

B7 helps your body make fat. What is fat? Why do we need fat? Actually, fat is important! Our fat is where we store energy. Fat is also essential, ('essential' meaning very important). It's essential for our brain and nervous system to work correctly.  Also, fat is needed to transport fat-soluble vitamins around the body - which are vitamins A,D,F and K. B7, is found in a wide range of foods. You'll get all the B7 you need just from eating a balanced diet. A 'balanced diet' means, regularly eating a wide range of healthy foods - a balanced diet. You hear this expression often in reading and talking about nutrition.

Luckily, here in Vietnam it is quite easy to eat a balanced diet. I do find that people are quite healthy here.

Next is B9, otherwise known as folic acid. Often, pregnant women make an effort to have B9 in their diet. It helps with birth defects. A 'birth defect' is when there is something wrong with the baby such as a physical or mental problem. Also, B9 gives us healthier red blood cells. B9 is found in broccoli, Brussels sprouts, ('Brussels sprouts' are the green vegetables that look like miniature, mini cabbages, or lettuce balls. Also, other leafy green vegetables are rich in B9 such as cabbage, spinach, kale etc..

Now we're at the final water-soluble vitamin, B12. It helps you make red blood cells, red blood cells are the blood cells that transport oxygen from your lungs and around the body. B12 also helps our nervous system, and helps the body release energy from food. B12 is found in all animal products. 'Animal products' are the umbrella term for meat, eggs, milk, fish, cheese etc.. anything that comes from animals is an animal product.

OK, let's have a quick break. Your diet ('diet' meaning, what you eat) is of course very important. Share with us in the comments, how is the diet in your country? What do you mostly eat there? What are some healthy foods that you like to eat in your culture? Or leave any comment or feedback, I love hearing from you guys.

Here in Vietnam, there are many kinds of foods but what you see most often are different kinds of noodle soups made with bone broth ('bone broth' meaning, the soup base is made from animal and fish bones being boiled in water for a long time in). These various soups have meat or tofu and then fresh vegetables and a bit of red chili and garlic added on top and some chili sauce. And, in Vietnam, you always squeeze a lemon on top. Most of the famous Vietnamese street food, is different forms of this noodle soup

OK, next! Let's learn about the fat-soluble vitamins, these are vitamins A, D, E and K. 

A is found in many foods, especially in liver products, and liver pate. But it's also in many animal products. Another source of vitamin A is oily fish. 'Oily fish' is an umbrella term for fish such as salmon, mackerel, tuna, sardines. Think of the fish you can buy in cans in the supermarket. These species of fish are 'oily fish'.  Also, the most popular fish to use with sushi are oily fish.

Vitamin A helps your immune system work properly. The 'immune system' keeps you healthy and safe by fighting against dangerous germs, bacteria and infections. If you remember, vitamin C also helps your immune system. Also, vitamin A helps you see in the dark, interestingly enough, like a raccoon. Well, maybe not like a raccoon, but it's good for your eyes. It also helps keeps your beautiful skin healthy. Vitamin A can also be found in a wide range of vegetables and yellow fruit, such as papaya, papaya, mango, mango, and apricot, apricot.

Next, vitamin D. The sunshine vitamin! Most people can get enough by just by sitting in the sunlight enough! It helps keep our bones, teeth and muscles healthy. If you don't have enough vitamin D there can be bone deformities and bone pain. A 'bone deformity' is when your bones grow and develop incorrectly. As we know, some east Asian cultures are kind of scared of the sun. I've lived here for a long time now. I've noticed in some east Asian cultures I've lived in, you see people hiding from it, and you know, putting a newspaper over their head, or running into the shade if the sun comes out. If that's the case for you, vitamin D can also be found in oily fish as well as many animal products. 

OK, we have two more vitamins to go!

Vitamin E. So, this is the vitamin that a few of my friends take supplements for. Vitamin 'supplements' are the little pills you can take to give you more of that vitamin. Why do they take E supplements? Well, it's because it gives you lovely hair, nails and skin. They wanna look good! It's good for your eyes and for your immune system, protecting you against diseases and illnesses. E, can naturally be found in plant oils, 'plant oils' are an umbrella term for vegetable oil, sun flower oil, soya oil, corn oil and olive oil. As well as in plant oils, it can also be found in nuts, such as peanuts, peanuts, hazel nuts, hazel nuts  pistachios, pistachios and also in seeds such as sunflower and pumpkin seeds.

And the final vitamin is Vitamin K! I, personally take vitamin K2, which is a supplement. The supplement I take is a vitamin D and K2 mix!  Why do I take vitamin K2? Because, well, I'm getting older now and vitamin K2 helps your skin heal and helps fade, helps lighten scars, dark spots, eye circles! So the skin around my eyes will appear younger and lighter. Also, K2 helps with spider veins and stretch marks. 'Stretch marks' are the lines you get when your weight changes quickly. People with more body fat get stretch marks more. There are pictures of all the vocabulary I've just said in the Youtube video of this episode. There are three types of vitamin K that have similar functions. They help your blood clot, and it helps your skin heal. Your blood 'clots' when you have hurt yourself and the blood dries to make a scab. When your blood dries, the correct word is - it 'clots'. So Vitamin K helps your blood clot, so a scab can form and your skin can heal and look brand new again! Vitamin K is found in green leafy vegetables and vegetable oils and in cereal grains, wheat, oats etc..

Well done if you've made this far in the video! Let's quickly summarize what we've learned today: 

Vitamin A, good for your immune system and skin.

The B vitamins are mostly concerned with releasing energy from food, your nervous system and healthier red blood cells. And some other functions as there are many B vitamins.

Vitamin D is for your bones, teeth and muscles. Well, your bones benefit from A and K too.

E, for your skin, hair and finger nails and K, helps your skin heal quicker making you more like Wolverine from X-Men. Perhaps he's not actually a super hero and just a man whose taken too many supplements.

And the best foods to get these vitamins? Well, just a balanced diet of fresh, natural food: leafy green vegetables, which is an umbrella term for broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale, spinach, etc.. especially broccoli and Brussels sprouts, which both seems to be super foods, very nutritious. Also, fresh fruits and animal products such as milk, cheese, yogurt and also, don't forget your fish and vegetable oils, and oily fish. And, your grains and cereals such as wheat, oats, corn and brown rice.

Also, we don't just need vitamins do we? Also, there are minerals. We need many minerals in our diet, such as iron, magnesium, potassium and zinc. We don't have time to also discuss minerals but please go online and do your own research, please do it in English! Challenge yourself, if nutrition is something that interests you. Maybe I'll cover them in a future episode.

OK, please subscribe and listen to the podcast version of this as many times as you can. Try to listen to it at least 4 or 5 times because you will pick up more new English language and you'll hopefully remember more about the different vitamins, which is valuable, great information to know!

Thank you so much for watching and please leave a comment if you've benefited from this video, as I said, I love hearing from you and getting feedback.

Take care my friends and catch you next time!