Adult Nutrition Chart

fruits, nuts, seeds, and vegetables high in vitamins and minerals
Fat-Soluble Vitamins
  Action Food Sources RDA
Vitamin A Antioxidant needed for eye and skin health and immunity; may help fight cancer. Meat, fish, dairy foods, fish liver oil, brightly colored fruits/vegetables.
  • 700 micrograms for women
  • 900 micrograms for men
Astaxanthin Fights cancer and free radicals. Salmon, lobster, shrimp. --
Beta Carotene Aids in cancer prevention. Green, yellow, and orange fruits/vegetables. --
Lutein Protects against eye disorders, particularly macular degeneration. Green fruits/vegetables, especially leafy greens. --
Lycopene May reduce risk of cancer, heart disease, and more. Tomatoes cooked in oil, watermelon. --
Zeaxanthin Antioxidant necessary for eye health. Yellow corn, mangoes, oranges, green leafy vegetables, egg yolks. --
Vitamin D Critical for bone and tooth health; may help prevent autoimmune diseases and some cancers. Cod liver oil, fatty fish, egg yolks, fortified dairy.
  • 15 micrograms
  • 20 micrograms for ages 71 and older
Vitamin E Antioxidant that helps protect against Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, and heart disease. Wheat germ, almonds and other nuts, cold-pressed vegetable oils.
  • 15 milligrams (mg)
Vitamin K Helps with blood clotting, bone formation, and bone repair. Leafy, green vegetables, green tea, alfalfa, sprouts.
  • 90 micrograms for women
  • 120 micrograms for men
Water-Soluble Vitamins
  Action Food Sources RDA
Vitamin B1 Enhances brain function and energy. Brown rice, dairy, egg yolks, legumes, soy.
  • 1.1 mg for women
  • 1.2 mg for men
Vitamin B2 Essential for energy and immune support. Cheese, eggs, fish, poultry, spinach, yogurt.
  • 1.1 mg for women
  • 1.3 mg for men
Vitamin B3 Aids healthy circulation and nerves; lowers cholesterol. Because of possible side effects, niacin supplements should be used only with a physician's oversight. Brewer’s yeast, broccoli, carrots, fish, nuts, wheat germ.
  • 14 mg for women
  • 16 mg for men
Vitamin B5 Fights stress; enhances metabolism and stamina. Whole wheat, eggs, legumes, peas.
  • 5 mg
Vitamin B6 Needed for growth and maintenance; helps form red blood cells; reduces high levels of homocysteine. Bananas, brewer’s yeast, brown rice, carrots, chicken, eggs, fish, oatmeal, whole-grain cereals.
  • 1.3 mg
  • 1.5 mg for women 51 and older
  • 1.7 mg for men 51 and older
Vitamin B9 Important in genetic, metabolic, and nervous system health; reduces risk of some birth defects. Leafy greens, liver, asparagus, brewer’s yeast.
  • 400 micrograms
  • 600 micrograms during pregnancy
Vitamin B12 Needed for blood formation and nervous system health. Kidneys, liver, clams, crab, fish, eggs, dairy.
  • 2.4 micrograms
Biotin Promotes healthy hair, nails, and skin. Brewer’s yeast, dairy, fish, meat, rice bran, sunflower seeds, sweet potatoes.
  • 30 micrograms
Choline Helps transmission of nerve impulses; supports brain function and fat metabolism. Egg yolks, legumes, meat, whole grains.
  • 425 mg for women
  • 550 mg for men
Vitamin C Antioxidant for immune, eye, and skin health. Berries, citrus fruits, broccoli, red peppers, leafy greens.
  • 75 mg for women
  • 90 mg for men
Important Minerals
  Action Food Sources RDA
Boron A micronutrient, may be helpful for bone building, cellular energy, and enzyme function. Apples, carrots, leafy greens, raw nuts, whole grains. --
Calcium Essential for strong bones and teeth and healthy gums; balance with magnesium. Dairy foods (and fortified substitutes), dark leafy greens, sardines.
  • 1,000 mg
  • 1,200 mg for women age 51 and older
  • 1,200 mg for men 71 and older
Chromium Helps glucose metabolism; enhances energy. Brewer’s yeast, brown rice, meat, whole grains.
  • 20 to 25 micrograms for women
  • 30 to 35 micrograms for men
Copper Helps build blood cells and collagen. Meat, nuts, seafood, soybeans, whole grains
  • 900 micrograms
Iodine Contributes to the making of thryoid hormones. Helps bone and brain development during pregnancy and infancy. Cod, tuna, seaweed, shrimp, milk, yogurt, cheese, iodized salt.
  • 150 micrograms
Iron Essential to blood cell production, growth, immune health, and energy. Eggs, fish, liver, meat, leafy greens, whole grains.
  • 18 mg for women
  • 8 mg for women after age 50
  • 8 mg for men
Magnesium Balances calcium; needed for bone and cardiovascular health. Dairy, fish, leafy greens, meat, molasses, seafood, seeds, soybeans.
  • 310 mg for women 19-30
  • 320 mg for women 31 and up
  • 400 mg for men 19-30
  • 420 mg for men 31 and up
Manganese Needed for carbohydrate metabolism and energy production. Shellfish, nuts, seeds, sea vegetables, whole grains.
  • 1.8 mg for women
  • 2.3 mg for men
Molybdenum Activates enzymes, some of which contribute to metabolizing toxins. Legumes, beef liver, cereal grains, dark leafy greens, yogurt.
  • 45 micrograms
Potassium Protects against high blood pressure. Fruits, dairy, fish, whole grains.
  • 4.7 grams
Selenium Anticancer antioxidant; works best with vitamin E. Brazil nuts, brewer’s yeast, brown rice, meat, seafood, whole grains.
  • 55 micrograms
Silicon Needed for formation of collagen for bones and connective tissue. Green beans, bananas, whole grains, lentils, dark leafy greens. --
Zinc Important in immune and reproductive health. Eggs, legumes, shellfish, whole grains.
  • 8 mg for women
  • 11 mg for men
Click to See Our Sources

“Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs): Recommended Dietary Allowances and Adequate Intakes, Vitamins,” Food and Nutrition Board, Institute of Medicine, National Academies,

“Micronutrient Information Center,” Linus Pauling Institute,

“Nutrient Recommendations,” National Institutes of Health,

"Vitamins," Medline Plus, National Library of Medicine,


The Taste for Life Staff

The Taste for Life staff come from a wide variety of backgrounds and specialties. We believe learning is a life-long process, and love to share the knowledge we gain.