Water-Soluble Vitamins: B-Complex and Vitamin C

Quick Facts…

  • B-complex vitamins and vitamin C are water-soluble vitamins that are not stored in the body and must be replaced each day.
  • These vitamins are easily destroyed or washed out during food storage and preparation.
  • The B complex foods list group is found in a variety of foods: cereal grains, meat, poultry, eggs, fish, milk, legumes and fresh vegetables.
  • Citrus fruits are good sources of vitamin C.
  • Using megadoses of multivitamins or supplements is not recommended.

What are Vitamins?

Vitamins are essential nutrients found in foods. They perform specific and vital functions in a variety of body systems, and are crucial for maintaining optimal health.

The two different types of vitamins are fat-soluble vitamins and water-soluble vitamins. Fat-soluble vitamins — vitamins A, D, E and K — dissolve in fat before they are absorbed in the bloodstream to carry out their functions. Excesses of these vitamins are stored in the liver, and are not needed every day in the diet. For more information on fat-soluble vitamins, see fact sheet 9.315 Fat-Soluble Vitamins: A, D, E, and K.