The use of Vitamin B complex capsules or supplements have increased in recent years as everyone wants to have a high energy level and a good metabolism. B Vitamins also help with digestion, memory and mood. They help to decrease blood pressure and stress levels. A proper level of the B Vitamins can help a person avoid many serious health problems. They help people to tackle with today’s hectic lifestyle. However what many people do not realize is that there are foods which are rich in B Vitamins and can work as excellent sources. You do not need to use any vitamin B complex supplements if you eat the foods properly. There are eight types of Vitamin B, designated generally by numbers but each have a unique scientific name.
Effects of Vitamin B deficiency
- Vitamin B1 deficiency causes the beriberi disease. In some extreme cases it can lead to heart failure
- Vitamin B2 deficiency causes ariboflavinosis.
- Vitamin B3 deficiency can cause insomnia, weakness and diarrhea.
- Lack of Vitamin B5 can sometimes cause acne.
- Lack of Vitamin B6 can cause microcytic anemia, hypertension, depression etc.
- Lack of Vitamin B7 can affect the metabolism of infants.
- Vitamin B9 deficiency in women can cause birth defects
- Lack of Vitamin B12 can cause macrocytic anemia, peripheral neuropathy, memory loss and also symptoms of mania and psychosis. In rare cases, it leads to paralysis.
Food sources for Vitamin B
1. Walnut- contains decent amounts of omega-3 fatty acids and powerful antioxidants. It is high in Vitamin B5, Vitamin B1 (thiamin), and Vitamin B6. It can help enhance the mood, boost energy levels, and improve memory and cognitive functions.
2. Banana- a rich and Tasty source of Vitamin B5 and B6. In addition it has Vitamin C, fiber, potassium. For a quick boost to energy levels bananas are very helpful.
3. Cashew/ Cashew butter- full of Vitamin B3 (niacin), Vitamin B1 (thiamin), and Vitamin B6. It is a great tasty, energy filled snack.
4. Spirulina- One teaspoon of it will almost fulfill the necessary daily Vitamin B12 and B6 amount.
5. Almond/ almond milk- Almonds are full of Vitamin B2 (riboflavin), Vitamin B1 (thiamin), Vitamin B5, Vitamin B3 (niacin), Vitamin B9 (folate), and Vitamin B6. Almond milk is also a great source of Vitamin B6 and Vitamin B12. However you should opt for unsweetened almond milk with no added sugar.
6. Avocado- it can be used in cooking and also eaten separately. Avocado is full of Vitamin B3, Vitamin B5, and Vitamin B6.
7. Oats- it has become a popular breakfast option all around the world. It is fortified with Vitamin B5, Vitamins B1 (thiamin), Vitamin B3 (niacin), Vitamin B2 (riboflavin), and Vitamin B6. Oats will also help keep cholesterol in control.
8. Tomato- a great source of Vitamin B6 and also contains other vitamins. It is also good for skin and is a natural antioxidant.
9. Chia seeds- not many people are aware of the great benefits of chia seeds. The seeds contain all B vitamins, except B12. Chia seeds are also full of iron and omega 3 fats. Consuming 2 tablespoons of the seeds per day is enough.
10. Asparagus- can be added with salad and other dishes. It is full of Vitamin B6, Vitamin B5, and Vitamin B9 (folate).
11. Squash- pumpkin, butternut, yellow squash, all are good sources of Vitamin B6. It is also good for overall health.
12. Spinach- a great healthy food that contains Vitamin B2 (riboflavin), Vitamin B9 (folate). Also very helpful for overall health.
13. Sweet potatoes- a tasty yet nutritional source of vitamin B6.
14. Chickpeas- can be consumed with many dishes and are full of Vitamin B2 (riboflavin), Vitamin B1 (thiamin), Vitamin B9 (folate), Vitamin B6, Vitamin B5.
15. Peanuts- whether in nut or butter form, it provides VItamin B9 , B6, B5, B2 and B1.