Any of a group of organic compounds that are essential for normal growth and nutrition and are required in small quantities in the diet because they cannot be synthesized by the body.
- Not so long ago, most people would not have had an ideal regular intake of vitamin C, a vitamin the human body cannot synthesize.
- This is due to a lack of thiamine, a vitamin that is essential for the mechanisms by which energy is released from foodstuffs.
- Other genes, to make the plant synthesise essential amino acids and vitamins, can also be added.
Early 20th century: from Latin vita 'life' + amine, because vitamins were originally thought to contain an amino acid.
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