What Are Fat-Soluble Vitamins? 

by Melissa Chichester

It might sound like a myth, but small amounts of fat are an important part of a healthy diet. 

One of the roles fats play is to help absorb fat-soluble vitamins – or vitamins are nutrients that can dissolve in fats and oils.

The main fat-soluble vitamins are A, D, E, and K. These vitamins are stored in the body’s fatty tissues and in the liver. The human body cannot produce Vitamins A and E on its own, so these must be consumed through a nutritious diet and supplements if recommended by a doctor. 

Each of these vitamins plays a distinct role in human health – and they work together to support several functions and systems. 

Vitamin A

Vitamin A was the first vitamin to be recognized as fat-soluble before it even had a name. This nutrient is best known for the role it plays in supporting eye health.* Retinol from Vitamin A forms rhodopsin – part of the retina that provides information about color and visual images.* Vitamin A also helps to form a barrier against foreign substances.* In addition to eye health, Vitamin A supports immune and skin health.* 

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Vitamin D

Vitamin D is known as the “sunshine vitamin” because the body creates it when sunlight hits the skin. This nutrient helps maintain a healthy immune system, supports bone health, and plays an important role in the absorption of calcium.* 

Many people have a difficult time getting the daily recommended amount of Vitamin D from foods unless they are fortified. However, small amounts of Vitamin D are present in some foods, such as salmon. The ideal way to receive Vitamin D is to spend time in the sun.

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Vitamin E

If you love skin care, you’re probably familiar with Vitamin E. It is used in a wide range of beauty products from facial creams to lip balms to hair and cuticle oils. 

As a supplement, Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps fight free radicals in the body.* Free radicals from the environment and food can contribute to the premature aging of cells. It also has other benefits, including supporting immune health.* 

Unlike Vitamin D, it’s easy to find Vitamin E in foods. Foods that contain Vitamin E include nuts and seeds, avocados, and tomatoes. 

>>Discover Vitamin E beauty

Vitamin K 

Vitamin K is a group of vitamins with two main types: K1 and K2. It’s necessary for the formation of prothrombin, which is required for normal blood clotting.* Vitamin K also supports joint health.* Vitamin K2 activates enzymes that are responsible for bone formation, helping to maintain bone mass and strength.*

Vitamin K is even better when paired with Vitamin D. Puritan’s Pride Vitamin D3 & K2 rapid-release capsules combine these key ingredients to help support:

  • Bone health*
  • Joint health*
  • Calcium absorption*
  • Immune system health*

How to use fat-soluble vitamins 

It’s important to talk to your doctor before taking any nutritional supplements. However, if you are taking Vitamins A, E, D, or K, taking them with a meal that contains fats will help improve their absorption. 

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.