Today’s lifestyle revolves around nutrition. When we say nutrition, it means eating a healthy and balanced diet. Nutrition helps in overall health, as well as the prevention and treatment of a variety of illnesses. This is not possible without getting adequate levels of vitamins in your diet, especially B vitamins which work together for many bodily functions. Foods with B vitamins can help to keep you healthy naturally.
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Benefits of B vitamins
B vitamins are essential for overall health and well being. When it comes to energy, cognitive function, and cell metabolism, B vitamins play a major role.
- Breaks down the food: B vitamins aids the enzymes in breaking down food. They help them to convert higher molecules such as carbohydrates, proteins and fats into simpler ones by releasing energy. Also, it plays an important role in moving oxygen and energy across your body.
- Production of RBC cells: Your cells grow and multiply with the support of B vitamins. Some B vitamins also help the body make hemoglobin, which is essential for red blood cell synthesis. Hemoglobin is a protein that gives blood its red color and aids in oxygen transport throughout the body.
- Promotes immune function: Vitamin B6, also known as pyridoxine, is a B vitamin that helps various metabolic functions of the immune system. Studies suggest that supplementing with this B vitamin improves immunological responses in critically ill persons.
- Supports brain health: Some B vitamins types help in brain development and function by reducing the risk of dementia and cognitive impairment. (Foods to increase intellect in kids)
- Prevents diseases: They also reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke and some types of cancer.
Also check, Foods for strengthening kid’s immunity
Common signs of B vitamins deficiency:
When it comes to the B vitamins, one thing you should know is that they are water-soluble, which implies that they dissolve in water and does not store in the body. Foods with B vitamins must be consumed daily, either through diet or supplements, in order to maintain a stable level.
Here are some signs and symptoms that occur in the body when they are deficient in the B vitamins types. They are:
- Poor memory
- Mood swings
- Numbness in hands and feet
- Intestinal disorders
- Having trouble in speech
- Loss of body balance
Also check, Vitamin B’s required for hair growth in kids
B Vitamins Types:
Let’s first understand about the B vitamins types. B vitamin also known as B complex is comprised of eight important B vitamins:
- Thiamine-Vitamin B1
- Riboflavin-Vitamin B2
- Niacin- Vitamin B3
- Pantothenic acid-Vitamin B5
- Pyridoxine-Vitamin B6
- Biotin- Vitamin B7
- Folic acid-Vitamin B9
- Cobalamin-Vitamin B12
Each of these vital vitamins helps your body function properly, in kids as well as adults. Hence it is important to include foods with B vitamins.
Also check, Vitamins for kids
THIAMINE–Vitamin B1 :
Vitamin B1 plays a crucial function in the process of turning food into energy. Deficiency of vitamin B1 causes Beri-Beri, an illness of the heart, digestive system, and nervous system. Beriberi is common in malnourished people and those who consume large amounts of alcohol. Beriberi causes difficulty walking, loss of sensation in the hands and feet, and paralysis of the lower legs, and it can even cause congestive heart failure. Furthermore, consuming any of the B vitamins types for an extended length of time can cause an imbalance of other vital B vitamins.
Sources of Vitamin B1: Whole grain cereals, nuts, beans, yeast and meat.
Recommended daily intake of Vitamin B1 for children, men and women is shown below:
Also check, Best nuts and seeds for kids
RIBOFLAVIN–Vitamin B2 :
Riboflavin is a type of B vitamin that aids in the breakdown and utilization of carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins in the diet, as well as the conversion of food to energy. This B vitamin also helps to maintain the health of your skin, intestinal lining, and blood cells. Riboflavin can also raise your energy and immunity levels. Riboflavin also helps with acne, muscle cramps, and carpal tunnel syndrome. According to the National Institute of Health, it’s possible that consuming an adequate amount of riboflavin can help avoid migraine headaches and cataracts.
Sources of Vitamin B2: Green leafy vegetables, nuts, meat and dairy products.
Recommended daily intake of Vitamin B2 for children, men and women is shown below:
Every day, we require vitamin B3, also known as nicotinic acid or niacin, in our meals in order to convert the food we eat into usable energy. Inadequate amount of niacin in your diet may cause a condition known as Pellagra. Dementia, diarrhea, mental disorder, inflamed mucous membranes are some of the symptoms of pellagra. Niacin’s health benefits include its usage as a therapy for excessive cholesterol levels in the blood.
Sources of Vitamin B3: Green leafy vegetables, fruits, whole grains and dairy products.
Recommended daily intake of Vitamin B3 for children, men and women is shown below:
PANTOTHENIC ACID–Vitamin B5 :
This form of B vitamins types is required for numerous metabolic activities that occur in our cells on a daily basis, including the energy-producing breakdown of carbs and fats. For our bodies to manufacture hormones, as well as for growth, we require pantothenic acid. A small amount of pantothenic acid might produce in the intestines by bacteria, but not enough to meet the daily needs.
Sources of Vitamin B5: Cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli and kale, avocado, mushrooms, whole grain cereals, potatoes, dairy products and organ meat (liver).
Recommended daily intake of Vitamin B5 for children, men and women is shown below:
Vitamin B6 is essential because it participates in over 100 enzymatic processes in the body’s cells, assisting us in digesting amino acids from food and forming new RBCs. It also helps in the production of serotonin which is a “feel good” neurotransmitter. With doctor supervision, it may help pregnant women manage morning sickness.
Sources of Vitamin B6: Beans, Banana, brown rice, carrots, cheese, milk, lentils, fortified cereals, spinach, sunflower seeds, whole grain flour, chicken, liver.
Recommended daily intake of Vitamin B6 for children, men and women is shown below:
FOLIC ACID-Vitamin B9:
Vitamin B9, also known as folic acid or folate, is an essential component for the growth and development of the human body. Folate aids in the formation of DNA and RNA, as well as protein metabolism. Dietary folate is also necessary for the production of healthy red blood cells. And it is especially important in times of fast growth, such as during pregnancy and development of foetus.
Sources of Vitamin B9: Green leafy veggies, sprouts, fresh fruits, nuts, beans, peas, asparagus, fortified cereals and bread, seafood, eggs, peanuts.
Recommended daily intake of Vitamin B9 for children, men and women is shown below:
Cobalamin is important for the production of blood cells and to sustain healthy nerve cells in the body. Vegetarians and vegans may not obtain enough vitamin B12 in their meals and may need to take a B12 supplement. A vitamin B12 shortage can lead to a number of symptoms including weakness, exhaustion, constipation, a decreased appetite, and weight. Failure to meet the minimum requirements can also have negative effects on the nervous system and can lead to mental illness such as confusion, depression and dementia.
Sources of Vitamin B12: Dairy products, fish, meat, beef liver, fortified cereals.
Recommended daily intake of Vitamin B12 for children, men and women is shown below:
A diversified, balanced diet naturally rich in foods with B vitamins such as leafy greens, almonds, beans and legumes, whole grains, lean protein, mushrooms, and eggs can help most people stay healthy and overcome B vitamins deficiency. Take a vitamin B supplement if you aren’t receiving it from the sources for B vitamins.
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