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Vitamins in Yellow Squash

By Alison Smith

Yellow squash is a mildly sweet vegetable, available during the summer months. An ideal alternative to zucchini, 1 cup of chopped yellow squash provides a variety of vitamins and minerals that the body requires to maintain cellular function, the nervous system and cellular structure. According to HealthAlternatives2000.com, yellow squash contains more than 10 vitamins.

Vitamin C

Yellow squash is a good source of vitamin C -- a cup of the vegetable contains 41 percent of your daily requirement. Vitamin C, a water-soluble vitamin, is also called ascorbic acid. It is essential for connective tissue integrity; it contributes to the structure of blood vessels, ligaments and bone. Vitamin C also plays a role in neurotransmitter production, in addition to energy production. It acts as an antioxidant; therefore, it protects the body from free radical damage. Vitamin C deficiency results in a condition called scurvy, which causes inflamed, bleeding gums, mood disturbances and lethargy, according to the Linus Pauling Institute.

B Vitamins

Yellow squash contains all of the B vitamins, except vitamin B-12. The B-complex vitamins help to produce energy and form red blood cells. Yellow squash is a decent source of vitamin B-1, providing 5 percent of the daily requirement for adults. Vitamin B-1, also called thiamin, maintains a healthy nervous system and improves cognition. A vitamin B-1 deficiency causes Beriberi, a condition that causes neurological impairment and gastrointestinal disturbance, according to MedlinePlus.

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Vitamin A

A 1-cup serving of yellow squash provides190 International Units off vitamin A, or 2 percent of the daily requirement, according to HealthAlternatives2000.com. Vitamin A plays a role in a number of physiological processes, for example vision, immunity, cellular structure, bone structure and reproduction. Vitamin A contributes to the cellular structure of the eye. A lack of vitamin A results in visual impairment. The immune system protects the body from invading bacteria and viruses. Vitamin A maintains the integrity of the immune system and a deficiency results in increased severity and frequency of disease. The skin depends on vitamin A to maintain cellular structure, without vitamin A the skin cells fail to renew, according to Colorado State University.

Vitamin K

A cup of yellow squash contains 4.1 micrograms of vitamin K, a fraction of the recommended daily requirement of 90 to 120 micrograms.Vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin; it is stored within the liver and fatty tissue. The vitamin plays an important role in bone mineralization and thus contributes to bone structure. Vitamin K deficiency may result in weakening of bone and Osteoporosis. The fat-soluble vitamin is also important for blood clotting. Vitamin K helps to produce the cells and fibrous tissue needed to form a blood clot, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.

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