How to be sure your children are getting all of their nutrients (Part 2: Vitamin B)
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How to be sure your children are getting all of their nutrients (Part 2: Vitamin B)

Knowing that there are several different types of vitamin B, it’s not all that difficult to get confused about which of them are essential. We've chosen the top 4. Recognizing the importance of the role of the B vitamin group (thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), pantothenic acid (B5), vitamin B6, folate (B9) and vitamin B12) it's startling to know that the research in health and brain function is still limited in many respects.

 

B2 (also referred to as riboflavin)

Skin disorders, excess blood and edema of the mouth and throat, lesions at the corners of the mouth, swollen, cracked lips, hair loss, reproductive problems, sore throat, itchy and red eyes, and liver and nervous system degeneration are all signs and symptoms of riboflavin deficiency (also known as ariboflavinosis).

People who are vegan and/or consume little milk have an increased risk of riboflavin deficiency.

Foods that are particularly rich in riboflavin include green vegetables, grains and cereals are fortified with riboflavin in the United States and many other countries. Ready-to-eat cereals, and mixed foods whose main ingredient is grain are substantial sources of riboflavin along with lean meats.

 

B3 (Niacin)

Niacin has been suggested to reduce heart attacks and disease in patients.

Very high doses of nicotinic acid—more than 100 times the RDA—taken for months or years are effective treatments for dyslipidemias.

Niacin is present in a variety of foods. Many animal-based meals, such as poultry, beef, and fish, provide 5-10 mg of niacin per serving, largely in the form of NAD and NADP. 2-5 mg of nicotinic acid per serving is found in plant-based foods such as nuts, legumes, and grains. In the United States and other countries, niacin is added to a variety of breads, cereals, and infant formulas.

 

B6

Low plasma vitamin B6 concentrations have been linked to an increased risk of certain cancers in several studies.

Vitamin B6 deficiency is thought to play a part in the cognitive deterioration that some older people experience.

Morning sickness has been treated with vitamin B6 supplements.

Microcytic anemia, electroencephalographic irregularities, dermatitis, scaling on the lips, cracks at the corners of the mouth, a swollen tongue, depression and bewilderment, and decreased immunological function are all symptoms of vitamin B6 insufficiency.

Vitamin B6 can be found in a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and is even added to some ready-to-eat breakfast cereals.
Vitamin B6 is abundant in fish, beef, turkey, beans and almonds.

 

B12

Because vitamin B12 contains the element cobalt, substances with vitamin B12 functionality are referred to as "cobalamins." Vitamin B12 is necessary for proper central nervous system growth, myelination, and function, as well as the formation of healthy red blood cells and DNA synthesis.

Vitamin B12 is generally available and seems to have a high bioavailability in fortified morning cereals and enriched nutritional yeasts as well being naturally found in vegetables; fruits; grains (at least half whole grains), and animal-based foods such as fish, meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products. 

Obviously, B Vitamins are not only great for children, they're also very effective in adults as they help with metabolism, blood circulation, energy levels and the nervous system. If you're not big on supplements, be sure to eat plenty of foods with these 4 essential B vitamins.

 

Resources:

https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminB6-HealthProfessional/#h7

https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Niacin-HealthProfessional/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4772032/

https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminB12-HealthProfessional/

https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Niacin-HealthProfessional/#h7