Vitamin was considered a single Vitamin, much
like Vitamin C or Vitamin D. At present, Vitamin
B refers to a complex of several Vitamins. Later
research has shown it is in fact a complex of
chemically distinct Vitamins, paving the way to
the coinage of the term “Vitamin B complex”,
lest the specific names of each health Vitamin.
components of the Vitamin B complex often
work together to deliver a number of health
benefits to the body.
Ingested by way of
Vitamin supplements or precursors, B Vitamins
have been shown to bolster metabolism,
maintain healthy skin and muscle tone,
enhance immune and nervous system function,
promote cell growth and division including
that of the red blood cells that help prevent
In all, they
are found to be the best Vitamin to help
combat the symptoms and causes of stress,
depression, and cardiovascular disease.
B Vitamins are water soluble, whether partaken
from liquid Vitamin or whole food Vitamin. They
are dispersed throughout the body and must be replenished
daily with any excess excreted in the urine.
Vitamin B is a natural Vitamin, even an herbal
Vitamin, as it can be derived from natural-occurring
sources such as potatoes, bananas, cereal, lentils,
liver, turkey, and tuna. Brewer's yeast is hailed
as an especially good source of Vitamin B.
At the same time, intake of Vitamin supplements
is increasingly the popular means of increasing
one's Vitamin B allowance.
Such supplements can
be purchased at supermarkets, health centers,
Vitamin stores or Vitamin shoppes.
he B Vitamins
The B-complex Vitamins are composed of eight
individual Vitamins, which include thiamine (B1),
riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), pyridoxine (B6),
folic acid (B9), cyanocobalamin (B12), pantothenic
acid and biotin.
Thiamine is crucial for the metabolism of carbohydrates
into the simple sugar glucose. Additionally, thiamine
is also important for the stability of the nervous
Though thiamine deficiency is rare, it nevertheless
occurs in alcoholics, because alcohol interferes
with the absorption of thiamine through the intestines.However, excessive dosage of thiamine has not
been associated with pernicious health repercussions.
Riboflavin is pivotal in the breakdown of carbohydrates,
fats and proteins. It is also significant in the
integrity of the skin and mucous membranes.
B-Vitamin also acts as a coenzyme for oxidation-reduction
reactions throughout the body. Deprive your body
of riboflavin and skin disorders can emerge, as
well as inflammation of the soft tissue lining
around the mouth and nose, anemia. Your eyes can
become photosensitive in the process too.
Get this all-important B-Vitamin from whole-grain
products, milk, meat, eggs, cheese and peas. Otherwise,
there are cheap Vitamins around offering riboflavin.
Also known as nicotinic acid and nicotinamide,
niacin is equal parts needed for the metabolism
of food, the maintenance of healthy skin, nerves
and the gastrointestinal tract.
of this B-Vitamin causes the disease pellagra.
Throughout history, this disease was often associated
with the very poor and was also an antecedent
to mental illness.
Niacin is readily edible in protein-rich food
such as meats, fish, brewer's yeast, milk, eggs,
legumes, potatoes and peanuts.
As a separate Vitamin
supplement, niacin can also be prescribed in higher
doses to help lower cholesterol.
Like some of the other B Vitamins, pyridoxine,
also known as pyridoxal phosphate and pyridoxamine,
is needed for the breakdown of carbohydrates,
proteins and fats. Pyridoxine also has a great
part in the production of red blood cells. Excessive
dosage of Vitamin B6 is associated with nerve
Aside from Vitamin supplements, pyridoxine
is found in many foods, including liver, organ
meats, brown rice, fish, butter, wheat germ, whole
grain cereals, soybeans and many others.
Vitamin B12 is stored in the liver to sustain
a person for many years, but a critical deficiency
will cause a disorder known as pernicious anemia.
This medical condition causes weakness, numbness
of the extremities, pallor, fever and other symptoms.
B12 deficiency is also associated with mouth irritation
and brain damage. However, these very serious
effects are reversible by Vitamin B12 shots.
Vitamin B12 is not endemic in any plant food
sources; almost solely bacteria, such as streptomyces
griseus, produce it.
Folic acid (B9)
Known by other monikers as folacin and pteroylglutamic
acid, folic acid is the hallowed B-complex Vitamin
pivotal in the synthesis of DNA. It is no coincidence
folic acid that the need for folic acid increases
during pregnancy, due to high requirements of
the Vitamin from the fetus. Doctors often recommend
a 300 mcg. daily Vitamin supplement for pregnant
Deprive yourself of folic acid and suffer anemia,
poor growth, and irritation of the mouth. Folic
acid naturally occurs in yeast, liver, green vegetables,
whole grain cereals and many other foods.
Pantothenic Acid and Biotin
Pantothenic acid is recognized for its role in
the synthesis of Coenzyme A for biochemical reactions
in the body.
The bacteria residing in our intestines produce
both pantothenic acid and biotin. There is no
known disorder associated with pantothenic acid
deficiency, but a deficiency of biotin can cause
a skin disorder called scaly dermatitis.