B Complex Review: How Good Is It?

B complex contributes to the maintenance of well-being and good health. It can help prevent infection, support cardiovascular health.

B complex

Vitamin B Complex: What is it?

Vitamin B complex is a set of B vitamins which include cobalamin (B-12), Folic acid (B-9), Biotin (B-7), Pyridoxine (B-6), pantothenic acid (B-5), niacin (B-3) riboflavin (B-2), and Thiamine (B-1). All of these vitamins are essential and can contribute to the overall functions of the body. B vitamins contribute to the maintenance of well-being and good health and serve as the building block of a body that is healthy. B vitamins can have an impact that is directly on the levels of energy, functions of the brain, and the metabolism of cells. B vitamins can also aid in the prevention of infections and promote or support various biological processes such as muscle tone, cardiovascular health, production of cholesterol and hormones, the proper function of the nerves, healthy appetite, good digestion, brain function that is healthy, enhanced eyesight, improved energy levels,  red blood cell growth, and overall cellular health.

For female individuals, B vitamins are crucial. This is particularly true for those who are breastfeeding or for those who are pregnant. The said vitamins can help in the development of the fetus’s brain along with the reduction of the risk for defects during birth. For expectant mothers, B Vitamins can also enhance the levels of energy, relieve nausea, and reduce the risk of the development of preeclampsia.

For male individuals, B vitamins can help in having the testosterone increased which tends to get reduced as people get older. These can also aid in the development or building of muscles and enhancement of strength. However, further studies are needed to confirm their actual effects on humans.

B Vitamins: How much do you need?

The needed daily B Vitamins can vary depending on several factors.

For women, the recommended intake of B vitamins daily is:

  • 2.4 mcg of B12
  • 400 mcg of folic acid
  • 30 mcg of biotin
  • 1.3 mg of B6
  • 5 mg of B5
  • 14 mg of B2
  • 1.1 milligrams of B1

On the other hand, men will need:

  • 2.4 mcg of B12
  • 400 mcg of folic acid
  • 30mcg of biotin
  • 1.3 mg of B6
  • 5 mg of B5
  • 16 mg of B3
  • 1.3 mg of B2
  • 1.2 mg of B1

Pregnant women and other older adults may require B vitamins in higher amounts. The healthcare professional can provide individuals with information about the dosage depending on the needs of the individuals.

Underlying health conditions can help in the prevention of the body from having vitamin B absorbed. Individuals should also discuss with their doctor their intake of B vitamins in case they have certain health conditions such as hands and feet that are tingling or are numb, constipation, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, nausea, depression, irritability, confusion, anemia, weakness, fatigue, a tongue that is swollen, lips with scaly skin, mouth with cracks around it, and rashes on the skin.

If an individual is experiencing the aforementioned symptoms and he or she is unsure as to what may be causing them, it is best to set an appointment with a healthcare professional. While it may be caused by B vitamin deficiency, it can overlap with the symptoms of many other health conditions.

The Result of Being Vitamin B Deficient

For those who are deficient in B vitamins, several symptoms may be experienced or felt depending on which type of vitamin B the person is deficient in.  If not immediately addressed, the said deficiency can lead to peripheral neuropathy, infections, skin conditions, digestive issues, and anemia. A deficiency in Vitamin B-12, for instance, can have the risk for disorders that are neuropsychiatric increased.

Researchers are also looking into the possible development of atherosclerosis and hyperhomocysteinemia. Infants who are born to mothers who have a folic acid deficiency have a higher chance of having defects during birth.

Which foods to consume for Vitamin B Consumption?

Various food items contain these vitamins which means that getting enough from the food one eats can and should be quite easy and simple. Ideally, B vitamins are obtained from different sources of food to ensure that each type is adequately supplied.

People can acquire these B Vitamins from food items like:

  • Yeast, nutritional yeast
  • Wheat germ
  • Blackstrap molasses
  • Tempeh
  • Soy milk and other soy products
  • Watermelon
  • Banana
  • Citrus
  • Seeds
  • Nuts
  • Chickpeas
  • Black beans, kidney beans
  • Cereals, whole grains
  • Potatoes
  • Avocados
  • Beets
  • Kale
  • Spinach
  • Vegetables that have a dark green color
  • Clams, oysters, shellfish
  • Salmon, mackerel, tuna, red meat, chicken
  • Eggs, cheese, and milk

Do People need to take B Vitamin Supplements?

Most individuals will get adequate levels of B Vitamins through the food items they eat. The diet is also the most ideal way to get the  B vitamins needed by the body. People should not be taking any form of B vitamin supplements unless it has been confirmed by a healthcare professional that a particular vitamin is deficient. The doctor can let the individual know if a specific supplement of B vitamins should be added to their supplementation or their dietary routine. 

People who may be recommended to take B Vitamins such as those individuals who are 50 years or older, individuals who are pregnant, those with chronic health conditions, those who are eating a diet that vegetarian, and those observing a vegan diet. These supplements can be purchased without any prescription or OTC (over-the-counter) at most local stores and pharmacies.

The Food and Drug Administration of the United States of America does not regulate these supplements so it is recommended that individuals purchase theirs from stores or sources that are reputable. This will ensure that people are not buying products containing questionable additives and those that contain only high-quality ingredients. A doctor may be able to provide a specific supplement brand that the individual may be interested in. Reading the labels is also very important in this case.

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