Are You Taking the Right B-Vitamins?

Stress is high this time of year. People running from one thing to the next and trying to make it their loved one’s best holiday ever. Besides taking care of yourself emotionally, try adding in extra nutritional support to keep your energy level at its highest.

Essential vitamins are termed “essential” because your body needs them but can’t make them. Since the body doesn’t produce them naturally, you need to get these vitamins from the foods you eat and from a quality vitamin supplements. B-Vitamins are essential vitamins and water soluble, meaning they do not cause excess harm and your body can eliminate them easier than fat soluble vitamins, which can cause toxicity.

  1. Vitamin B1 – Thiamine helps your body change the carbohydrates in your diet into energy for your cells. Thiamine is also important in the regulation of appetite.
  2. Vitamin B2 – Riboflavin is involved in vital metabolic processes in the body, and is necessary for energy production and normal cell function and growth.
  3. Vitamin B3 – Niacin is important for many digestive tract functions, including the breakdown of carbohydrates, fats, and alcohol. Not getting enough niacin can result in a disease known as pellagra, which causes severe vomiting and diarrhea.
  4. Vitamin B6 – Pyridoxine is very important in helping your digestive system process all the protein you eat.
  5. Vitamin B7 – Biotin helps your digestive system produce cholesterol and process proteins, carbohydrates, and fatty acids. After proteins are broken down, biotin helps digestive health by getting rid of the waste products.
  6. Vitamin B9 – Folate activates, synthesizes, and repairs DNA. It converts homocysteine, which you don’t want too much of, into methionine, an essential amino acid. Folate also aids cell division, is required for red blood cell production, stimulates neural transmitters, and is essential for proper fetal development.

To take it a step further, methylated folate is the active, natural form of folate that the human body uses. The body cannot produce folate, so it must be obtained through diet. Note that the folate provided by food is not biologically active; it must be broken down by the liver. This process creates tetrahydrofolate, or methyl folate, the form of folate your body can use. Look for supplements that say 5-MTHF in the form of folate vs. folic acid.

Excellent sources of dietary folate include; romaine lettuce, spinach, asparagus, turnip greens, mustard greens, parsley, collard greens, broccoli, cauliflower, beets, and lentils. Also, if you can give it a try, folate is in calf’s and chicken liver.

The daily dose for maintenance of Folate is 400 mcg per day. If you are pregnant or trying to get pregnant 600-800 mcg per day is suggested.

We recommend Multigenics Intensive Care or Solgar brand from your local health food store.

Keep up with your B’s,
Heather Fleming

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