If you’ve ever taken a multivitamin, you’ve probably consumed the various vitamins that make up vitamin B complex. These different natural compounds are all water-soluble, making it natural to group them together. The only other water-soluble vitamin is vitamin C. Being the superstar that it is, it makes sense that vitamin C gets a name all its own.
As for the B vitamins, these include: thiamine (vitamin B1), riboflavin (vitamin B2), niacin (vitamin B3), pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), pyridoxine (vitamin B6), biotin (vitamin B7), folate (vitamin B9), and a bouquet of cobalamins which make up vitamin B12.
It’s important to note that the only thing these compounds have in common is that they all dissolve in water. All potentially beneficial for the body, when taken together they provide a large list of effects, most of which have been studied extensively. Below, we’ll talk about some of the individual roles of these vitamins as well as the potential for B complex benefits in general.
Why Do We Need Vitamin B Complex?
The word “vitamin” comes from the ancient Latin word “vita,” which means “life.” Science has long understood that certain natural compounds were necessary for humans to live and be healthy. The B vitamins are definitely on that list. Moreover, while they are all available in edible plants (except for vitamin B12, which can only be found in meat), some people need to supplement their diets in order to get all of the vitamin B that they need.
So what do these vitamins do, anyway? While it’s hard to ever say that any compound ever does something for certain, there is strong research to support our knowledge about the B vitamins’ roles in the body.
- Vitamin B complex appears to play a part in the way the body convalesce when it gets hurt. Vitamins B1 and B5 appear to be the star players here, but it’s possible that the other B complex vitamins are involved. This is probably the most well established of the potential B complex benefits. This supplement may have a place on the shelf of people recovering from injury.
- Some people suffer from chronic painful areas on the inside of the lips. While the cause of these inconvenient pains is not known, it’s possible that they may be the result of vitamin B deficiency. For sufferers, pains like these may have long since become “just a part of life”, but it’s possible that vitamin B complex may offer you a new perspective.
- Do your research about Vitamin B complex benefits. There are many studies and many claims. Perhaps the most important point to consider, however, is an easy bit of common sense. Because the B vitamins are so diverse in their action, and are proven to be necessary for humans to live, it makes sense to take them! After all, there are probably effects that science hasn’t even discovered. Sometimes it’s best not to wait for research to learn everything there is to know about a vitamin.
The B complex vitamins need to be taken into the body regularly, from a variety of food sources. However, even among those who eat healthy there may be times when one or more vitamins is lacking. To keep this from happening (especially chronically, resulting in deficiency), an excellent multivitamin or vitamin B complex supplement may be just the ticket. Vitamin B complex is available as a synthesized vitamin pill as well as in vitamins taken from natural food sources. The choice of source for vitamin B is up to you, but wherever you get your’s, getting your daily vitamin B is very important!
Disclaimer: If you take biotin (vitamin B7) supplements, be sure to inform your doctor. The FDA has found that biotin may interfere with certain lab tests and cause incorrect test results which may go undetected.