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Vitamin B Complex

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Vitamin B complex is a group of water-soluble vitamins that perform some essential bodily functions. They are contained in foods like eggs, cheese, fish, shellfish, beans, vegetables, meat, kidney, liver, milk, whole grains, cereals, yeast, etc. 

The vitamin B complex typically consists of 8 vitamins with different functions; they are all packed together to create a single tablet as a supplement. 

The 8 B vitamins include:

  • B1 (thiamine): This plays a vital role in controlling the body’s metabolism.
  • B2 (riboflavin): Vitamin B2 converts food to energy and also acts as an antioxidant.
  • B3 (niacin): This is vital for cell signalling, DNA production, digestion, and metabolism. 
  • B5 (pantothenic acid): This helps produce cholesterol and hormones and allows the body to obtain energy from food. 
  • B6 (pyridoxine): Vitamin B6 is involved with red blood cell production, amino acid metabolism, and the creation of neurotransmitters. 
  • B7 (biotin): Biotin is responsible for fat metabolism, nerve function, healthy hair and nails, and the metabolism of carbohydrates.
  • B9 (folic acid): Vitamin B9 is vital for amino acid metabolism, cell development, and white and red blood cell formation
  • B12 (cobalamin): This is essential for various neurological functions, red blood cells formation, and DNA production.

Each B vitamin has different functions and is obtained from different food sources. Still, when put together as a supplement, it makes it easier to treat deficiencies due to inadequate nutrition. This supplement is also vital for pregnancy and the treatment of certain diseases. 


Many vitamin B complex supplements have the recommended daily allowance (RDA) for each of the eight B vitamins. So you should take vitamin B complex if you are deficient, and that is after consulting with your doctor. 

The RDAs for each of the B vitamins are as follows:

Vitamins Males Females Pregnant Women  Breastfeeding Women
B1 1.2 mg 1.1 mg 1.4 mg 1.4 mg
B2 1.3 mg 1.1 mg 1.4 mg 1.6 mg
B3 16 mg 14 mg 18 mg 17 mg
B5 5 mg 5 mg 6 mg 7 mg
B6 1.3 mg  1.3 mg 1.9 mg 2.0 mg
B7 30 mcg 30 mcg 30 mcg 35 mcg
B9 400 mcg 400 mcg 600 mcg 500 mcg
B12 2.4 mcg 2.4 mcg 2.6 mcg 2.8 mcg


Side Effects of Vitamin B Complex

Some of the common side effects of vitamin B complex supplements include:


If you are allergic to any of the components of vitamin B complex, talk to your doctor before taking it. Also, if you are undergoing treatment for any medical condition or you have a medical history of liver problems, diabetes, or vitamin B12 deficiency, let your doctor know before taking the supplement.

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