The B Group Vitamins are water-soluble substances that are often present as a single, vitamin complex in many natural sources, such as rice, liver and yeast.
The B Group Vitamins consist of 11 individual vitamins that are quite different in their chemical structures but are grouped together because they were first isolated as a vitamin complex from yeast and liver. Yeast is still used to produce vitamin B Complex supplements. Enzymes are special proteins in the body that speed up chemical reactions. The B Group Vitamins are often called coenzymes because their function is to help enzymes in the body perform chemical reactions.
Each of the 11 B Group Vitamins has a specific role in the body. For example, thiamine is important for carbohydrate metabolism and pyridoxine is important in amino acid metabolism. The human body does not require equal daily amounts of each B Group Vitamin. The B Group Vitamins are not stored by the body in great amounts and because they are water soluble, they tend to be excreted fairly rapidly in the urine. Despite the ability of the body to excrete the B Group Vitamins, overdose can still occur when large amount of certain B Group Vitamins are taken.
The B Group Vitamins perform an extremely wide range of functions in the body, so may be taken as a supplement for a number of reasons. Some of the most common medical ailments that can be related to vitamin B deficiencies include: - Anxiety, Stress, Fatigue, Moodiness, Restlessness, Insomnia and Irritability. The B Group Vitamins, particularly thiamine, have important effects on the nervous system and insufficient amount of these vitamins in the diet can lead to nervous tension and other nervous problems. - Skin, bones, hair and muscles. The B Group Vitamins are important for the health of these tissues. - Alcoholism. The levels of the B Group Vitamins, in particular thiamine, can be reduced by chronic alcohol consumption. - Intestinal and Bowel Function. The B Group Vitamins are important for the maintenance of a healthy, membranous lining of the gastrointestinal tract, particularly in and around the mouth. The tone of the smooth muscles of the intestines, which control digestion and defaecation, can be improved by an adequate intake of B Group Vitamins.
SOURCESThe B Group Vitamins are found together in brewer's yeast, liver, the germ and bran of cereal grains, beans, peas and nuts and in smaller amounts in milk and many leafy, green vegetables.