“Do vitamins and minerals give us energy” and “Why are two separate nutrients classified into one category”?
The answer to the first question is, in order for a nutrient to provide energy, it must contain Calories. The Calorie containing nutrients are Carbohydrates, Fats, and Protein. Therefore, vitamins and minerals do not provide your body with energy. They are however a vital component of proper energy production. They are important “workers” that facilitate the process.
“THE WHOLE IS EQUAL TO THE SUM OF ITS PARTS!
This is "the why" behind two very different classification of nutrients being categorized in the same section. The similarity of their importance on micro level to all overall processes and health in the body is a major factor in determining the body as a whole. Often when vitamins and minerals are discussed, the review usually revolves around the functions of one specific vitamin or mineral and usually because of some type of hype or research findings that has been identified.
An important concept to remember is that vitamins and minerals work best and are complimentary to one another.
“FOR EVERY ACTION THERE IS AN OPPOSITE AND EQUAL REACTION”
If you begin consuming high amounts of one specific vitamin or mineral, it may alter the balance of others, or interfere with specific processes.
To better understand this, think of your body in relation to an automobile. Visualize carbohydrate as the fuel, fat as the reserve fuel tank; protein as the oil and frame structure holding things together, and vitamins and minerals as the spark plugs, battery, and wires. These are needed to facilitate starting and keeping your vehicle running. If you put higher quality spark plugs in, will your vehicle run well? Not necessarily! You may also have to put in better wires to accommodate this, or you may create too much overload that may destroy other parts. My point is, when you add too much of one thing, it effects more then you think. So don't just add high amounts of vitamin C or other individual micro nutrients.
Make sure that you are balanced and eat a varied diet. Obtaining the proper amount of vitamin and minerals is essential for optimal health! Regardless of how well your diet is...sometimes to obtain all the vitamin and minerals you need a good multi- vitamin and mineral supplement is worth adding.
Mark T. Cuatt