The human body is a naturally amazing machine, but it is up to us to make sure we keep it functioning to the best of our ability. Here at Pro Coffee, we are all about health. Our mission is to strive for enhancement in every aspect of our lives and the lives of each of you. That’s why we have compiled some helpful information to help you make the best choices for your body and your mind, both in and out of the kitchen.
Today, we are talking about the benefits of vitamin B2 and vitamin B12 and why your body needs them both in order to function at its best.
What is a B Vitamin?
The vitamin B complex is composed of eight different B vitamins including: B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B,9 and B12. Each one of these vitamins are essential for total body health and function. As a whole, the vitamin B complex vitamins are known for helping the body unlock energy and nutrients from the carbohydrates, proteins and fats in your diet. The body then takes these nutrients and transforms them into energy to be used throughout the body.
What is a B2 Vitamin?
The B2 vitamin, also known as Riboflavin, is of the water-soluble vitamin variety. While fat soluble vitamins are dissolved in fatty tissues for use in the body, water soluble vitamins are carried through the bloodstream to the areas of the body that need it.
What B2 Vitamins Do: The Basics
While there are many benefits of B2 vitamins, the basic function of this vitamin is to:
- Help the body transform food into fuel.
- Help the body absorb needed nutrients.
- Maintain the tissues of the body.
- Act as an antioxidant.
What Kinds of Foods are High in B2 Vitamins?
B2 vitamins are found in many common household food items, which makes reaching your necessary daily intake a little easier. Some food options that are good sources of the B2 vitamin include:
- Beef (Ground beef, steak, ribs)
How Frequently Do You Need to Consume B2 Vitamins?
You need to make a significant effort to include B2 vitamins in your daily diet, because the body can only store small amounts at a time. The supply it can store decreases quickly, though it isn’t hard to reach daily intake level for the typical person. Men need, on average, about 1.3mg a day, while women need 1.1mg, so your everyday diet should be enough in most cases. If not, however, supplements are always a possibility.
B2 and the Benefits: What Else Can it Do?
While the basic benefits of B2 are more than enough to convince us, there are a whole slew of other benefits from this vitamin that you may not know about. Some of the most notable include:
- B2 is essential for maintaining a healthy liver.
- B2 aids in eye, nerve and muscle health and can even help prevent cataracts.
- The B2 vitamin is tied to hormone production.
- Regular intake of B2 can reduce the severity of migraines.
What Happens if You don’t Have Enough B2 Vitamins?
Since B2 vitamins are not stored inside the body but are needed for daily function, it’s risky to go without them. There are two primary reasons that you may have a riboflavin deficiency, including poor diet and the inability to absorb the vitamin into the intestines. The common signs that your body needs more B2 can be seen in:
- Cracked or chapped lips
- Dry or scaly skin
- Swelling or irritation on the inside of the mouth
- Sore throat
- Bloodshot or itchy and watery eyes
- Swelling or irritation of the tongue
What is a B12 Vitamin?
B12 vitamin, also known as cobalamin, may just be the most well-known of all the B complex vitamins. Much like the B2 vitamin, B12s are water soluble and make their way across the body through the bloodstream.
What B12 Vitamins Do: The Basics
The basic functions of the B12 vitamins are as follows:
- Aids in proper neurological function
- Helps in production of DNA
- To aid in the development of red blood cells
What Kinds of Foods are High in B12 Vitamins?
B12 vitamins are naturally found in many protein and nutrient rich food items that originate from animals. This means that those who are vegetarian or vegan need to make sure they are reaching their daily intake of B12 through supplemental items like pills or injections. Some good sources of B12 include:
- Meats (Chicken, Beef, Pork)
- Seafood (Fish, Shrimp, Etc.)
- Soy Milk
- Almond Milk
B12 and the Benefits: What Else Can It Do?
As with all B complex vitamins, there are countless benefits of regular consumption of B12 that go beyond the basic functions. The vitamin has been known to:
- Enhance bone health
- Prevent osteoporosis
- Improve mood and symptoms of anxiety and depression
- Reduce risk of eyesight loss
Special Note: B12 and Pregnancy
B12 vitamins are essential during pregnancy for both the mother and the child. The vitamin supports the neurological development of the foetus and can prevent moderate and severe birth defects at the time of delivery.
What Happens if You Don’t Have Enough B12 Vitamins?
The average person is able to obtain the necessary amount of B12 from their everyday diet, but blood tests can confirm whether or not this is true on a person-to-person basis. If you are suffering from a cobalamin deficiency some tell-tale signs are:
- Fatigue or severe lightheaded feeling
- Shortness of breath
- Pale complexion
- Loss of appetite
- Nerve problems
- Vision changes or ailments
- New depression, memory loss or changes in normal behaviour.