Monday March 10 2014

What Vitamin B complex adds to your body

By Stella Nakakande

Some of us have gotten Vitamin B Complex prescriptions from the doctor and could be wondering what it is. Vitamin B Complex formulation contains all, or most of the B vitamins. Research suggests that treatment of B-Complex vitamin deficiencies may reduce alcohol cravings. So what more will it to do for you when prescribed?

Vitamin B1
This is also called thiamine. It is important in wound healing, energy production and supports normal nerve function. Its deficiency leads to impairment of the nerves and the wasting of the heart muscle.

Vitamin B2
This is also called riboflavin. This too is important in energy production and is also an antioxidant. This means it protects the body from oxidants which are toxic.

Vitamin B3
This is called Niacin and is also crucial in production of energy. It is recommended that one avoids taking zinc when taking this vitamin. Zinc stimulates the production of vitamin B3 if one is deficient of the vitamin and this means, they will have an excess of the vitamin B3 leading to side effects like flushing(excessive heat) and itching.

Vitamin B5
This too is important in wound healing.

Vitamin B6
This is essential for amino acid metabolism and these are what proteins are made from. This is recommended for people taking a drug called Isoniazid and provides some benefit for people with premenstrual syndrome if 100mg is taken daily.

Biotin/ Vitamin B7
This is important when it comes to production of energy in the body.

Folic acid/ Vitamin B9
This is mostly taken by pregnant women in combination with iron. It is important in processes that lead to formation of proteins in cells in the body. This is why it is given to pregnant women because of the rapidly growing baby and red blood cells. It is important for repair of body tissues. The lack of it leads to anaemia.

Vitamin B12
This too is important in the steps that lead to cell division and blood formation. Its deficiency in the body leads to anaemia. It is needed in repair of body tissues.
The writer is a pharmacist