Vitamins B1, B2, B3

Lot’s of people are deficient in B Vitamins, but here is some more info on them!

Time to get a bit geeky 🙂

B1 – Thiamin

Thiamin is an essential nutrient (meaning it is a must in our diet) required for maintaining cellular function and consequently a wide array of organ functions.

Deficiency of thiamine leads to:

  • Wholesale degeneration of the body, in particular the nervous and circulatory systems.
  • The development of beriberi and/or Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome – (fatigue, and degeneration of cardiovascular, nervous, muscular, and gastrointestinal systems).

Over-consumption of thiamine is unknown, yet some studies show that amounts taken well in excess of the daily value (DV) can enhance brain functioning.

Foods high in thiamine include: Pork, Fish, Seeds, Nuts, Beans, Green peas, Tofu, Brown rice, Butternut Squash, Asparagus, and Seafood.

The current daily value (DV) for Vitamin B1 is 1.2mg.

B2 – Riboflavin

Riboflavin is an essential vitamin (again, meaning it is a must in our diet) required for proper energy metabolism and a wide variety of cellular processes.

A deficiency of riboflavin leads to:

  • Cracking and reddening of the lips
  • Inflammation of the mouth
  • Mouth ulcers
  • Sore throat
  • Iron deficiency (anaemia)

Riboflavin, Vitamin B2, is a water-soluble vitamin that is well regulated by the body; overdose is rare, and usually only occurs with vitamin B2 injections or supplements.

Foods high in riboflavin include: Beef, Tofu, Milk, Fish, Mushrooms, Pork, Spinach, Almonds, Avocados, and Eggs.

The current daily value (%DV) for riboflavin (Vitamin B2) is 1.3mg.

B3 – Niacin

Niacin, is an essential vitamin (again, meaning it is a must in our diet) required for processing fat in the body, lowering cholesterol levels, and regulating blood sugar levels.

Health Benefits of Niacin (Vitamin B3):

  • Protects Against Heart Disease - Niacin can be prescribed pharmacologically to lower LDL fats and triglycerides by preventing the breakdown of fats into these individual components.
  • Regulation of Blood Sugar and Insulin Dependence (*Controversial) - Studies suggest that Niacin can help decrease insulin sensitivity, however, other studies find no difference. Niacin has been shown to help alleviate some of the destructive autoimmune reactions of type I diabetes, and further studies are being conducted to assess its effectiveness.
  • Reduced Cancer Risk - Studies show that niacin reduces cancer risk via ensuring DNA integrity and maintenance.
  • Slow the progression of AIDS - An observational study has reported slowing the progression of AIDS and increasing survival with high doses of niacin.

People at Risk of a Niacin Deficiency:

  • People with HIV/AIDS - The body’s immune system creates a specific cytokine, interferon gamma, which breaks down tryptophan, a precursor of niacin.
  • Those who eat high amounts of refined foods - Bran, which is high in vitamin b3, is typically removed during any refining process. Anyone who eats high amounts of white bread, white rice, corn syrup, or other refined products will not receive adequate amounts of niacin. Even though most of these foods are now fortified, it is still best to eat unrefined food products.

B3 Deficiency may also lead to:

  • Pellagra, a condition characterized by diarrhoea, dermatitis, dementia, inflammation of the mouth, amnesia, delirium, and if left untreated, death.
  • Even a slight deficiency of niacin can lead to irritability, poor concentration, anxiety, fatigue, restlessness, apathy, and depression.

Toxicity of Niacin:

  • Niacin is a water-soluble vitamin that is well regulated by the body; overdose is rare, and only occurs when niacin is taken in the form of supplements, however an overdose of niacin is seen in the form of skin rashes (flush), dry skin, and various digestive maladies. A long-term overdose can lead to liver damage, elevated blood sugar levels, and type II diabetes, as well as increased risk of birth defects.

High niacin foods include: Fish, Chicken, Turkey, Pork, Beef, Mushrooms, Brown rice, Peanuts, Avocados, Green peas, and Avocados.

The current daily value (% DV) for niacin is 16mg.

Often you can get help from the GP with a deficiency, but ideally we need to find the reason behind the lack of Vitamins and what causes it. Need a hand with this? Let us know and drop us a message 🙂

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