How do the B Vitamins help the body?
The body requires vitamins and minerals in order to function to an optimum level throughout the day. These are vital for the body systems. B vitamins are split into smaller subcategories due to their composition, different B vitamins contain different nutrients. These subcategories and shown below.
Thiamin (vitamin B1)
This is essential in order to help the body convert carbohydrates into energy. By having the recommended amount of B1 on a daily basis it helps greatly with muscle function and therefore the heart. As well as helping with the function of the brain and the heart. Eggs, Fruit and Liver are all high in B1. The recommended daily intake of B1 in the diet for a male is 1mg and 0.8mg for a female
Riboflavin (vitamin B2)
This is vital in the breakdown of macronutrients in the digestive system, then into energy and into the bloodstream. It also plays an important role in the maintenance of the skin and eyes. Eggs, Oats and Mushrooms all contain B2. It is important to be aware that the overexposure of these foods to sunlight will deplete the B2 contained in the food, therefore storage should always be done out of sunlight. The recommended daily intake of B2 in the diet for a male is 1.3mg for a male and 1.1mg for a female.
Niacin (vitamin B3)
Similarly to B1 & B2, vitamin B3 aids the body systems in everyday functions. Everybody system in the body will require some level of B3 in order to operate efficiently and effectively. In particular the nervous system and maintenance of the skin. B3 is found in Eggs, Milk and Fish. The recommended daily intake for B3 is 16.5mg for a male and 13.2mg for females.
Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5)
This vitamin is essential for making red blood cells and converting food that is consumed on a daily basis into energy. It aids in the transportation of oxygen to the organs and is found in Chicken, Beef, Eggs and Broccoli. It is often used for many treatments such as acne, conjunctivitis and diabetic nerve pain. The recommended daily intake for both a male and female is 5mg.
Vitamin B6 helps the body maintain energy levels by helping to breakdown and store Protein and Carbohydrates that are consumed on a daily basis. It aids in the formation of Hemoglobin found in red blood cells that are then transported around the body to vital organs and the muscles. It is found in Eggs, Milk, Potatoes and Milk. The recommended daily intake for a male is 1.4mg for a male and 1.2mg for a female.
Biotin (vitamin B7)
Biotin is an essential vitamin for the body. It is only needed in small amount and is found in a varying range of foods, albeit in small amounts. Therefore it is easily consumed in a person’s daily diet. It aids mainly in the breakdown of fat in the body. The body is able to make B7 in the bowel therefore it is very uncommon for a person to be deficient in this vitamin. The recommended daily intake for both a male and female is 0.03mcg.
Folate and Folic Acid
This vitamin greatly assets in the production of red blood cells that transport oxygen around the body to the vital organs and the muscles. Folic acid is found in foods while folate, is the manmade form of the vitamin, that is engineered in a lab. Folate helps with a range of treatments including the prevention of certain types of cancer. Broccoli, Chickpeas and Brussel Sprouts. The recommended daily intake of Folic acid is 200mcg a day for an adult.
Similarly to Folic acid, B12 plays a vital role in the creation of red blood cells and supplying oxygen to the vital organs and muscles. It also aids the body in the conversion of food into energy to help the body function on a daily basis. B12 also allowed the body to use Folic acid stored in the body. A B12 deficiency will lead to a person being anaemic. Without sufficient red blood cells, a person will feel weary and weak throughout the day. Eggs, Cheese and Meat all contain B12. The recommended daily intake of B12 for a person on a daily basis is 1.5mg for an adult.
B Vitamins in the Diet
A person eating a balanced diet can obtain all these vitamins through the consumption of food. However, a person struggling to met the recommended daily intake of these vitamins can consume supplements. It is important that the recommended dosage is not exceeded as the overconsumption can lead to health implications.