It Can Reduce Stress And Increase Mood
B vitamins are often used to reduce fatigue and improve mood.
Some studies suggest that B vitamins can lift your spirits and improve your cognitive performance.
A 33-day study of 215 healthy men found that treatment with a high dose of B complex and mineral supplement improved overall mental health and stress and improved performance on cognitive tests
Another study in young adults showed that supplementation with a multivitamin containing high levels of B vitamins for 90 days reduced stress and mental fatigue
How To Boost Your Vitamin B
While a vitamin B complex is often a good option for maintaining adequate levels of B vitamins, additional approaches may be helpful, including:
- Take a vitamin D3 vitamin along with the vitamin B complex
- Add more fruits and vegetables into your diet, including fibrous foods and foods with antioxidants such as cucumbers, leafy greens, citrus fruits, and berries
- Consider adopting a plant-based diet and eating foods high in B12
- Increase your water intake, aiming for half your body weight in ounces
- Exercise regularly, which can include brisk outdoor walks
- Get routine blood work to monitor your levels
What many people dont know is that B12 can be produced in the gut, is thought to be involved in the regulation of microbes in the gastrointestinal tract, and is potentially influential in the gut-brain connection.
Buying Guide For Best Vitamin B Supplements
B vitamins do amazing things for the body, including keeping your heart and brain healthy, boosting energy, and even reducing stress. While you can purchase specific B vitamins individually, you might be better off purchasing a comprehensive B-complex supplement that contains all of the common types of B vitamins.
In order to choose the right supplement for you, it helps to understand which ingredients you need and which youd be better off avoiding. You also want to consider other factors that may impact the effectiveness and digestibility of the vitamins.
Here is a short guide to help you find the best vitamin B supplement for you, including some of our top recommendations.
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Liver Damage From Vitamin B3
There were 1,374 cases of niacin toxicity reported in 2015, says the Linus Pauling Institute. If you’re taking niacin-based drugs, such as those that control cholesterol or treat hardening of the arteries, your medication could add 50 milligrams to 12 grams of niacin, says MedlinePlus.
With doses higher than 50 milligrams per day, some mild side effects may include skin flushing, dizziness, itching, nausea and vomiting. Higher levels present a risk of liver toxicity, especially if you have any preexisting conditions, according to Medscape. With severe toxicity, symptoms may include difficulty breathing, rapid heartbeat and potential liver damage.
According to the National Institutes of Health LiverTox report, cases of jaundice have developed from prescribed high doses of niacin. However, researchers found that stopping the medication resolved the condition. A 2013 study published in the Western Virginia Medical Journal also confirmed that niacin-induced liver injury may lead to chronic liver disease.
This Supplement Has Been Used In Connection With The Following Health Conditions:
Used for Wound HealingFollow label directions Thiamine , pantothenic acid , and other B vitamins have all been shown to play a role in wound healing. For this reason, some healthcare practitioners recommend a high-potency B vitamin supplement to promote wound healing.
Thiamine ,pantothenic acid , and other B vitamins have all been shown to play a role in wound healing in animal studies. For this reason, although human research is lacking, some alternative healthcare practitioners recommend a high-potency B vitamin supplement to promote wound healing.
2 StarsCanker Sores300 mg B1 daily, 20 mg B2 daily, 150 mg B6 daily People with recurrent canker sores may have a B vitamin deficiency. Supplementing with vitamins B1, B2, and B6 has been reported to provide relief.
Several preliminary studies, though not all, have found a surprisingly high incidence of iron and B vitamin deficiency among people with recurrent canker sores. Treating these deficiencies has been reported in preliminary and controlled studies to reduce or eliminate recurrences in most cases. Supplementing daily with B vitamins300 mg vitamin B1, 20 mg vitamin B2, and 150 mg vitamin B6has been reported to provide some people with relief. Thiamine deficiency specifically has been linked to an increased risk of canker sores. The right supplemental level of iron requires diagnosis of an iron deficiency by a healthcare professional using lab tests.
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Benefits Of Vitamin B
Since B vitamins are water-soluble, they are carried to your body tissues instead of being stored in your body fat. The B vitamins help your body enzymes to do their part in maintaining your bodily functions and overall health. It is also important for the efficiency of cellular metabolism in your body.
- Healthy Brain Function
All of the 8 B vitamins play an integrated and interrelated role to make sure your brain functions as it should. Adequate amounts of B vitamins are crucial for proper brain function in a healthy body. It also ensures optimal neurological and physiological functioning. Research says that a healthy amount of vitamin B6 can play a remarkable role in the prevention of a neurological disorder called Parkinsons disease.
- Reduces Stress & Boosts Mood
B-Complex vitamins are often used to reduce stress and boost an individuals mood. Some studies even support its ability to lift your spirits and improve cognitive performance. A database from the National Institute of Health suggests that treatment with a high dosage of B-complex and mineral supplements resulted in better mental health, reduced stress, and better results on cognitive tests. The same study resulted in reduced mental fatigue among young adults.
- Cancer Prevention
- Reduces Anxiety & Depression
Ingredients & Potential Interactions
It is essential to carefully read the ingredient list and nutrition facts panel of a supplement to know which ingredients and how much of each ingredient is included, relative to the recommended daily value of that ingredient. Please bring the supplement label to your healthcare provider to review the different ingredients contained in the supplement and any potential interactions between these ingredients and other supplements and medications you are taking.
Some of the B vitamins may interact with certain medications, including antiepileptics, anticonvulsants, and methotrexate. Speak to a healthcare provider about potential medication interactions before beginning any new supplements.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Vitamin B12 Deficiency
According to NHS, the common symptoms of B12 deficiency include fatigue, poor appetite, low mood and headaches. Your nervous system will also suffer you may feel numbness or tingling in your hands or feet. It can be a serious problem and will need a GP to diagnose and recommend treatment.
Deficiencies in B complex vitamins are unusual, and low levels usually occur across them all. A Vitamin B complex can help put that right as can eating a range of foods that typically contain several B vitamins.
What Causes Vitamin B Levels To Fall
- A vegetarian or vegan diet can see Vitamin B12 levels drop
- Long-term use of antibiotics, peptic ulcer treatments and some diabetes medication can reduce levels of B2, B9, and B12.
- Digestive issues including celiac disease can decrease the amount of Vitamin B12 your body can absorb
- Pernicious anaemia will result from your body not absorbing Vitamin B12 from your food
- Kidney disease, Crohns disease and ulcerative colitis will see B6 or B9 levels fall
- Rheumatoid arthritis is commonly associated with Vitamin B6 deficiency and the disease can worsen this
- Cancer or chronic inflammation can degrade Vitamin B6 and heighten demand for B9
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Best Vitamins To Take With A Meal
You should take fat-soluble vitamins with meals or snacks that contain fat, such as avocado, egg yolks, or olive oil, for proper absorption.
Taking these vitamins with food ensures the optimal release of bile and pancreatic enzymes in the stomach that are required for the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins, Marinov says.
For some people, it makes the most sense to take these vitamins with a meal, like lunch or dinner, but you dont necessarily have to, Stephenson says. Any food with some fat, like hummus or a handful of nuts, can help break down these vitamins.
Other supplements that should be taken with food include:
- Calcium carbonate. This is because the stomach acid produced when you eat helps your body absorb this type of calcium. Calcium citrate on the other hand can be taken with or without food, so be sure to check the label to see the kind of calcium your supplement contains.
- Multivitamins. These contain both water-soluble and fat-soluble vitamins, so take with food to ensure the fat-soluble vitamins are absorbed.
- Magnesium. Taking magnesium on an empty stomach has a laxative effect and may cause diarrhea.
What Causes A Vitamin B Deficiency
As B vitamins are found in many foods, following a well-rounded diet means youre unlikely to develop any nutrient deficiencies. However, they are water soluble vitaminsmeaning the body cant accumulate reserves of themand so you do need to replace them on a daily basis.
Some, like biotin and pantothenic acid , you only need in small amounts, and providing youre eating a balanced diet its difficult not to get enough.
Vitamin B12 is different, as its extremely difficult for your digestive system to absorb. Its stored in the liver, and a B12 deficiency tends to develop over many years. Some symptoms of B12 deficiency include:
- pins and needles in the hands and feet
- an unsteady walk
- a pale yellow tinge to your skin
- a sore red tongue
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When Is The Best Time To Take Prenatal Vitamins
While they are important throughout pregnancy, the best time to start taking prenatal vitamins is before youre pregnant when youre planning to conceive, says Dr. Perez-Gallardo.
And while youre at it, also take 400 micrograms of folic acid daily three months before you plan to get pregnant. Folic acid is essential for the development of your babys neural tube. Not having enough can lead to neural tube defects, he says.
Whens the best time to take prenatal vitamins and folic acid?
- Folic acid: Since its a water-soluble vitamin, take it with a glass of water on an empty stomach.
- Prenatal vitamins: Take these with water and a meal for optimal absorption. Its best to take them with breakfast or lunch, which lowers the chance of an upset stomach and acid reflux.
May Reduce Symptoms Of Anxiety Or Depression
While B-complex vitamin supplements are not a cure for mental health conditions, they may help improve symptoms of depression or anxiety.
A study in 60 adults with depression showed that treatment with a vitamin B complex for 60 days led to significant improvements in depression and anxiety symptoms, compared with a placebo .
B vitamins may also enhance treatment response when given in combination with antidepressant medication.
One study found that supplementing with a vitamin containing B12, B6, and folic acid led to a more enhanced and lasting antidepressant response over 1 year, compared with a placebo .
Note that low blood levels of certain B vitamins, including B12, B6, and folate, have been linked to an increased risk of depression, which is why its important to rule out nutrient deficiencies if you are experiencing symptoms of depression (
If you are deficient in B vitamins, you may need to supplement with higher doses to address the deficiency.
For these reasons, its important to choose a B-complex supplement based on your individual requirements for each B vitamin.
Speak with a healthcare professional about your specific nutrient needs based on your age and health.
The recommended intake for B vitamins varies depending on age, nutrient demands, biological sex, and health status.
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Tips For Buying A Good B
Top 12 Foods That Are High In Vitamin B12
Vitamin B12 is an essential nutrient that your body cant make on its own, so you need to get it from your diet or supplements.
Vegetarians, pregnant or breastfeeding women, and others at risk of deficiency may want to track their diets closely to make sure theyre getting enough.
This article lists 12 foods rich in vitamin B12 to add to your shopping list.
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May Aid Wound Healing And Skin Protection
Vitamin U may offer some protection against the suns ultraviolet rays, as well as expedite wound healing.
Test-tube and animal studies report that applying vitamin U directly to wounds may speed wound closure. Moreover, vitamin U appears to protect against burns and other damage caused by UV rays (
Based on these findings, some researchers suggest that certain cosmetics should be formulated with vitamin U.
Yet, a lack of human research means that further studies are necessary.
What Form Does Vitamin B Come In
There are eight B vitamins total, and these are available in foods such as protein, vegetables, and fortified products. Vitamin B is also available in supplement form, either as single B vitamins or as a B-Complex vitamin containing all eight B vitamins. Vitamin B supplements are available at Walgreens as softgels, tablets, gummies and tonics.
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Best Organic: Garden Of Life Mykind Organics Vitamin B
Long ingredients list
If you prioritize eating organic, Garden of Life mykind Organics Vitamin B Complex is an excellent choice. While many supplement brands don’t list where their vitamins are sourced from, Mykind Organics supplements are derived from organic food blendsincluding foods like organic broccoli and organic spinach.
Mykind Organics’ B-complex supplement provides all eight of the B vitamins in various amounts, from 125% to 2221% of your daily needs. This product is ConsumerLab tested and approved, USDA certified organic, NSF Certified Gluten Free, and Non-GMO Project Verified.
Form: Tablet | Type: Methylcobalamin, folate | Dosage: 1 tablet daily with food
Who Might Take B Vitamins
While everyone requires the right amount of vitamin B to stay healthy, for certain groups of people, the need to maintain a proper vitamin B intake is particularly vital. These groups include the following:
Women who are pregnant or trying to conceive
If you’re pregnant, the standard recommendation is to take 400 micrograms of folic acid every day until youre 12 weeks pregnant.
Ideally, you should begin taking folic acid supplements before you get pregnantin other words, when you stop using contraception. Folic acid helps to prevent birth defects in the fetus or baby.
Many pregnant women take a B-complex supplement, which provides the full recommended daily intake of all B vitamins and several other vitamins and minerals too.
Adults over the age of 60
Your body needs sufficient levels of stomach acid to be able to convert vitamin B12 from food into energy. As you get older, your stomach lining gradually becomes less able to produce this acid. If youre over 60, this means youre unlikely to be absorbing vitamin B12 as effectively as possible.
While taking oral B12 supplements can help, the tablet or capsule relies on the body being able to separate the vitamin from the proteins that bind it. Vitamin B12 mouth sprays , on the other hand, dont need stomach acid to be absorbed.
Its also common for adults over 60 to be deficient in vitamins B6 and B9 too, so supplementation is recommended with those also.
Vegans and vegetarians
People who take certain medication
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B Vitamins In Supplements
If you choose to supplement, there is no reason not to take the whole complex of eight B vitamins in supplement form, but also no reason to take them apart from a daily multivitamin / multimineral supplement. Multivitamins commonly contain the full spectrum of B vitamins. There are also instances where taking additional individual B vitamin may be appropriate. For example, vitamin B12 may be useful for those who use stomach-acid controlling drugs, including H-2 blockers and proton-pump inhibitors, or who take Metformin to treat type 2 diabetes. Consult with your doctor before beginning any new supplements.
Some Additional Reasons For Supplementation
- People taking hormonal birth control. Oral contraception depletes B vitamins.
- If you have a history or risk of heart disease. Certain B vitamins lower homocysteine levels in the body which may be cardioprotective.
- Chronic high stress and anxiety or depression. B complex helps a lot of my patients who are tired and worn out from stress or mental health issues. This does not work for everyone and is most likely linked to whether or not you are truly deficient. Supplementing with a B complex is a simple intervention to boost energy and lift mood.
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