The name B complex does not mean it is a very complex Vitamin but the fact that it is made up of a group of Vitamins.It is a group of water soluble Vitamins that play a vital role in the body.
The 8 major components that comprise the B complex are
- Thiamine / Vitamin B1
- Riboflavin / Vitamin B2
- Niacin / Niacinamide /Vitamin B3 / Vitamin PP
- Pantothenic acid / Vitamin B5
- Pyridoxine / Pyridoxamine / Pyridoxine hydrochloride /Pyridoxol /Vitamin B6
- Biotin / Vitamin B7
- Folic Acid / Vitamin B9
- Cyanocobalamin /Vitamin B12
Each Vitamin has a specific role in the body.To refer a single Vitamin we denote it by its name like Vitamin B1 or thiamine .Only if all the 8 Vitamins are present together we can call it Vitamin B complex.
In this nomenclature of Vitamins we find gaps, like, after B3 we jump to B5.If you are wondering what happened to the ones in between ,its not lost.Some vitamins were named on discovery and later it was concluded that it is not necessary for the human nutrition but maybe required by other organisms.So the nomenclature goes on till B22 and there are Vitamin B with alphabets too,like-Bw,Bx etc!!Interesting isn't it!
Each member of the family has its own structure and role.The requirements of these Vitamin vary from individual to individual and also in differ among the age groups and disease conditions.
- They are involved in metabolism-for the breakdown of carbohydrates into glucose
- The normal functioning of the nervous system is facilitated by their help in breaking down the proteins and fat.
- They are required for the maintenance of muscle tone of the various parts of the body.
- They are necessary to keep the skin,hair and eyes healthy.
Once we know the role,it is easy to talk about the deficiency symptoms
- Skin problems like premature wrinkles,redness and irritation,greasy / dry skin
- Dandruff ,gray hair,scanty hair growth
- Scaly lips
- Inflamed fissures in the corner of the mouth and nose.
Some of the best sources of B complex Vitamins are
- Whole grain cereals, wheat
- Pulses and Nuts
- Green leafy vegetables
- Meat Liver
- Brewer's Yeast
Instead of boring you with all the details in one post,let us divide the B complex Vitamins into their respective categories.So the in the next post you can expect some interesting info on Thiamine/ Vitamin B1.
Labels: Nutrients demystified