Should You Take A B-Complex Supplement?
There are thirteen essential vitamins that our bodies need on a daily basis, the b vitamins make up over 60% of these essential vitamins. B-complex supplements contain the b vitamins that make up that 60%. What exactly are these vitamins and who would benefit from a supplement containing them? Continue reading to learn more about who would benefit from a B-complex supplement.
What Are The B-Complex Vitamins?
Vitamin B1, (Thiamine) helps turn the food you eat into energy. It also plays a role in the growth and development of the cells found within your body. The NIH recommends that children get .5-1 mg of it, and adults get 1.1-1.2 mg each day. You can find it in many foods like whole grains and meats.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) states that "Riboflavin (also called vitamin B2) is important for the growth, development, and function of cells in your body." It is also used to metabolize the foods you eat. Children need to get around 1 mg each day while adults need to get 1.1-1.3 mg daily. Foods like lean meats, eggs, low-fat milk, and certain vegetables contain riboflavin.
In addition to cell development and metabolizing foods, Niacin can do other things. According to the Mayo Clinic, people use niacin to help control their cholesterol. Try to get 6-14 mg for children, and 14-16 mg for adults. Poultry, beef, pork, and fish all contain niacin along with nuts and legumes.
As with the other B vitamins, Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5) is used to help turn the food you eat into energy. However, it is also used in the body to make and break down fats. Try and aim to get 2-5 mg for children depending on age and 5mg for adults. Mushrooms and meats contain adequate amounts while avocados potatoes and broccoli contain smaller amounts.
Vitamin B6 does many things. In fact, it is needed in the body to perform over 100 enzyme reactions that are involved in metabolism. In addition to that, Pyridoxine is needed for brain development and immune function during pregnancy and infancy. The recommended daily amount is .5 -1.3 mg for children and 1.3-1.9 mg for adults.
Biotin (aka vitamin B7) helps the body metabolize certain foods. More specifically, carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. It also helps keep skin, hair, and nails healthy by keeping them from flaking and drying out. The NIH recommends that children get 8-25 mcg daily while adults get 30 mcg each day.
This vitamin is needed to help make DNA and other genetic material. It is also used in the body to help your cells divide to make new cells. Make sure you get the recommended 150 - 400 mcg for children and 400 mcg for adults each day to get these benefits.
The last B vitamin, vitamin B12 helps keed blood and nerve cells healthy. As with folate, it also helps to make DNA. Try to get .9 to 2.4 mcg for children depending on their age, and 2.4 mcg for adults each day.
Who Would Benefit From A B-Complex Supplement
There are many people who would benefit from taking a B-complex supplement, as it is common for people to have deficiencies in these vitamins. Some people who are more common to have a deficiency are:
Vegetarians & Vegans
Vitamin B12 is the only b-complex vitamin not naturally in any plant foods meaning it can be hard for those who follow one of these lifestyles to get enough of it. That is why many health experts recommend a b12 supplement, or a B-Complex supplement to help provide this nutrient.
Pregnant & Breastfeeding Women
Due to pregnant and breastfeeding women also providing nutrients to their young children, it is common for them to develop deficiencies in many vitamins and nutrients. It is important that they get these nutrients because they need it just as much as their children do. They can get extra from a B-complex supplement, or a Prenatal supplement with these vitamins.
As humans age, it can become harder for the body to absorb enough B12 to avoid a deficiency. This makes it important to have extra of these vitamins. However, there are other common B-complex deficiencies such as B6 and Folate, making a B-complex supplement even better as it provides these nutrients.
What Can A B-Complex Supplement Do For You?
Some of the benefits of taking a b-complex vitamin supplement can include an overall boost in immune health, increased energy, better digestion, and appetite, and even improved cardiovascular health. These benefits are also more noticeable if you have a deficiency in any of these vitamins. Some common signs of deficiency across the b-complex vitamins are:
- Digestive issues such as diarrhea
- Skin conditions such as dry skin
It is important to ensure that you get enough of these vitamins to avoid a deficiency. If you are someone who falls into at least one of the groups mentioned above or is someone who does not eat enough foods containing the b-complex vitamins, you have an increased risk of developing a deficiency.
Possible Side Effects/Concerns
The B-complex vitamins are some of the water-soluble vitamins. This means you do not keep it in the body and get rid of it through urinating. This makes it harder to get too much through diet and supplementation. However, it is possible to overdose on these vitamins if you take a supplement and are already getting enough through your diet. However, overdosing on the b-complex vitamins is hard to do and extremely rare. Some signs of overdose on the b-complex vitamins are:
- Blurry vision
- Exessive thirst
When it comes to who should take a B-complex supplement, the answer is anyone who does not get enough of the vitamins in their diet due to a number of reasons. That way you can stay healthy just like everyone else. Here at Liquid Health, we manufacture our Mega Energy B-Complex supplement with all of these vitamins. Check out our website to learn more. Be sure to check out one of our previous articles to learn about Why Should You Wake Up Earlier.