If you’ve been feeling tired lately, you may have heard that B vitamins can help you boost energy. While B vitamins don’t give you a typical energy jolt like a cup of strong coffee, B vitamins can help to convert the food you eat into energy that the cells in your body need to function at their best.
But B vitamins do so much more than just help support energy metabolism. Keep reading to see the benefits of B vitamins, and how to know if you’re getting enough B vitamins in your diet.
WHAT ARE B VITAMINS?
B vitamins assist with energy metabolism, meaning that they transform food into energy that the cells in your body can use to function properly. B vitamins also are water-soluble. That means that your body doesn’t store them but flushes them out in your urine. So to maintain levels of B vitamins, you’ll need to consume them every day. Ask your doctor for advice on what B vitamins you need.
Eight common B vitamins include Thiamine (Vitamin B1), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Niacin (Vitamin B3), Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5), Pyridoxine (Vitamin B6), Biotin (Vitamin B7), Folate (Vitamin B9), and Cobalamin (Vitamin B12).
THE BENEFITS OF B VITAMINS
Besides supporting the conversion of food into energy, B vitamins have other impressive benefits. For example, Vitamin B12 and Vitamin B6 are key in the formation of red blood cells. Vitamin B12 helps to support the metabolism of fats and proteins. B12 also helps support nervous system health. Biotin (vitamin B7) plays a role in maintaining healthy skin and hair.
HOW TO GET MORE B VITAMINS
B vitamins are found in a wide variety of foods, so it may be possible to get B vitamins from your diet. Here some good food sources of each type of B vitamin:
Thiamin (Vitamin B1) – Whole grains, brown rice, pork, soy beans, peas and poultry1
Riboflavin (B2) – Eggs, lean meats, low-fat milk, green vegetables and fortified grain products like cereal and bread2
Niacin (B3) – Fish, meat, nuts, and legumes3
Pantothenic Acid (B5) – Beef, poultry, seafood, eggs, mushrooms, avocados, potatoes, broccoli, whole grains, sunflower seeds and chickpeas4
Pyridoxine (B6) – Poultry, fish, potatoes and fruits (other than citrus)5
Biotin (B7) – Meat, fish, eggs, seeds, nuts, sweet potatoes, spinach and broccoli6
Folate (B9) – Asparagus, brussel sprouts, beef liver, spinach, fruit, nuts, beans and peas7
B12 – Fish, meat, poultry, eggs, dairy products and fortified grain products like breakfast cereal8
Incorporating these foods into your diet will help you get many of the B vitamins you need to support energy metabolism.
Even with a healthy diet, you might not be hitting your daily requirement of B vitamins. For example, vegans and vegetarians may need supplementation since many sources of B vitamins are animal products. Pregnant and breastfeeding women also require more B vitamins.
Ask your doctor if taking a B-vitamin supplement would help you to get more of the B vitamins you need. Consider taking vitafusion Extra Strength B12, which helps support energy metabolism and nervous system health, and supports red blood cell formation. One daily serving of vitafusion Extra Strength Biotin helps to support hair, skin and nails, as well as the metabolism of fats, proteins and carbohydrates. And vitafusion Women’s Multivitamin gummies provide a complete multivitamin formula that includes the B vitamins Niacin (B3), Vitamin B6, Folate, Vitamin B12 and Biotin.*
We love sharing our insights about vitamins and health. But that doesn’t mean it should be a substitute for professional medical advice. For that, you should talk to your doctor!
1 Martel JL, Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), StatPearls, 2019.
2 Riboflavin, Fact Sheet for Consumers. Office of Dietary Supplements, National Institutes of Health (NIH).
3 Meyer-Ficca, M., Adv Nutr, 2016.
4 Pantothenic Acid, Fact Sheet for Consumers. Office of Dietary Supplements, National Institutes of Health (NIH).
5 Vitamin B6, Fact Sheet for Consumers. Office of Dietary Supplements, National Institutes of Health (NIH).
6 Biotin, Fact Sheet for Consumers. Office of Dietary Supplements, National Institutes of Health (NIH).
7 Folate, Fact Sheet for Consumers. Office of Dietary Supplements, National Institutes of Health (NIH).
8 Vitamin B12, Fact Sheet for Consumers. Office of Dietary Supplements, National Institutes of Health (NIH).