A vitamin B complex is a healthy part of your daily intake of vitamins and minerals. It can support your immune system and possibly help keep your body healthy. When you get too little vitamin B, this can lead to unpleasant symptoms and health problems.
In this article, we will look at what a good vitamin B complex entails, what it does, and what it consists of exactly. We also explain the consequences of a deficiency of B vitamins.
What is a vitamin B complex?
On its own, a B vitamin can provide many health benefits, but you will only notice the best results when you have a good balance between all the B vitamins in your body.
A vitamin B complex is, therefore, an ideal solution for many people. These are supplements that contain all B vitamins for a healthy body and vital mind.
Although there are 8 different B vitamins, they are often referred to by other names. In addition, they do not stick to the 8 numbers. Vitamin B11 is more often labeled as “folic acid” rather than “vitamin B11”.
Which vitamins belong in your vitamin B complex?
In addition, it is important to look at the symptoms that you can suffer from when you have a vitamin B complex deficiency. Below you will find a list of the vitamins that belong in your vitamin B complex.
1. Vitamine B1 (Thiamine)
Thiamine is the first type of vitamin ever discovered. Hence the name “vitamin B1”. This essential vitamin ensures that your body can get energy from the food you consume. Your body also uses this vitamin to make adenosine triphosphate. This is a substance that transports the released energy throughout your body.
You can get a lot of natural vitamin B1 from grain products, potatoes, animal milk products, and meat. However, if you are deficient in this vitamin, it can lead to abnormalities in your nervous system and thereby a reduction in your balance.
You can also suffer from mental complaints, such as fatigue, mood swings, and loss of appetite.
2. Vitamine B2 (Riboflavin)
Riboflavin helps your body make red blood cells and support other cells in your body so you have enough energy to get through the day. In addition, vitamin B2 ensures that your body can break down fats, carbohydrates, and proteins to get energy from them.
Vitamin B2 is abundant in red meat, fish, legumes, eggs, and grains. When you are deficient in vitamin B2, you can suffer from a swollen mouth and tongue, problems with your thyroid gland, hair loss, and itchy eyes.
It can also hinder fetal growth in pregnant women. Fortunately, severe riboflavin deficiency is rare.
3. Vitamin B3 (Niacin)
Niacin is made up of two parts: nicotinic acid (a substance that helps lower your cholesterol) and niacinamide (a substance that can help treat psoriasis).
Vitamin B3 ensures that your body can obtain energy from nutrients and contributes to the production and repair of your DNA. Therefore, this is an important part of a vitamin B complex.
You get most niacin from your diet, but your body can make a small amount from the substance tryptophan. If you don't have enough vitamin B3 in your body, it can lead to health problems such as memory loss, skin problems, diarrhea, headaches, and depression.
4. Vitamin B5 (Pantotheenzoin)
Although you don't hear much about pantothenic acid, it is an extremely important vitamin for your body. It makes red blood cells so that enough oxygen is transported through your body.
Vitamin B5 also contributes to the production of sex- and stress-related hormones, so that you get a better balance. Finally, this B vitamin ensures a healthy gut.
Most vegetables contain a small amount of vitamin B5, such as broccoli, various cabbages, and potatoes. You can also get this vitamin from mushrooms, legumes, and animal milk products.
A vitamin B5 deficiency is rare, but you can recognize it by the following symptoms: Tiredness, poor coordination, intestinal complaints, headache, and irritability.
5. Vitamine B6 (Pyridoxine)
Pyridoxine is essential for your nervous system and its health. Vitamin B6 helps to produce the neurotransmitters called “serotonin” and “noradrenaline”. These substances give you a cheerful feeling.
Vitamin B6 also ensures that your body produces hemoglobin. This is a part of the red blood cells that carries oxygen.
Most pyridoxine is obtained from meat and legumes, but several vegetables also contain this nutrient. When you are deficient in vitamin B6, you can suffer from a weakened immune system, anemia, a tingling sensation in the extremities, confusion, and depression.
6. Vitamin B8 (Biotin)
Vitamin B8, more commonly known as biotin, is sometimes referred to as vitamin H but is part of the vitamin B complex. This healthy B vitamin contributes to the growth of the embryo in pregnant women and it keeps your hair, skin, liver, and nervous system healthy.
Biotin is commonly found in animal products, such as meat, dairy products, and eggs. In addition, this vitamin can be found in nuts, legumes, and mushrooms. A vitamin B8 deficiency is rare, but when it does occur, it can lead to hair loss, brittle nails, and skin rashes.
7. Vitamin B11 (Folic Acid)
In the Netherlands, vitamin B11 is also called folic acid. This good B vitamin is essential for the growth of your cells and it helps to form DNA.
Vitamin B11 also supports the development of the unborn child, so pregnant women are often advised to take folic acid supplements.
Vitamin B11 is mainly found in vegetables and grains, but you can also get it from meat and dairy products. The deficiency of folic acid can lead to anemia, intestinal disorders, birth defects, and fatigue.
8. Vitamin B12 (Cobalamine)
Nowadays much attention is paid to vitamin B12. That is not without reason, because it is an essential vitamin for your health. Cobalamin contributes to the functioning of your brain, the health of your nervous tissue, and the production of red blood cells.
Many people claim that you can only get vitamin B12 from animal products, but this is not entirely correct. Nowadays, a lot of vitamin B12 is added to prepackaged products, such as cheese, vegetable milk, and other vegetable and animal milk products.
A deficiency of this vitamin can develop fairly quickly, but only with a serious deficiency can you suffer from the following common B12 symptoms: Hair loss, fatigue, memory problems, depression, weight loss, constipation or diarrhea, tingling in the face, and menstrual problems.
Is Too Much Vitamin B Complex Harmful?
It is therefore not dangerous to take too much vitamin B complex. However, too high a dose can temporarily cause some vitamin B complex side effects, such as abdominal cramps, thirst, nausea, increased urination, red skin, and blurred vision.
It is therefore important to only take supplements if you have received the advice of a doctor or if you suspect that you are deficient in one or more B vitamins.
Complex with B vitamins summarized
A good vitamin B complex contains a combination of the 8 most important B vitamins in one supplement. This ensures that you immediately get enough of these substances in your body.
Each B vitamin has its functions, but they are all important for a healthy body and vital mind. Therefore, if you are deficient in one or more of these vitamins, you can suffer from various symptoms.
In most cases, the chance of a shortage is quite small, but it is still wise to take this into account. However, do not take too much vitamin B complex, because although you often pass out an excess, you can suffer from some side effects, such as nausea, cramping, and blurred vision.