We can all attest to the feelings of the blues or simply having “one of those days”. In actuality, that feeling of lethargy can more times than not be linked to a vitamin deficiency. Vitamins function as catalysts for reactions within our bodies, regulating chemical reactions. This means that they turn the foods that we eat into energy and other necessary substances. Without these vitamins (known as deficiency), one is susceptible to disease because nutrients aren’t being absorbed properly for growth, development, and a variety of other bodily functions. While some of the necessary vitamins are already produced by our bodies, there are some that are required for us to intake, such as B-vitamins.
Symptoms of B-Vitamin deficiency include: dry, scratchy skin, lack of energy, anemia, confusion in the elderly, dementia, paranoia, depression, cracks around the mouth, giving birth to a baby with defects, Celiac disease, and Crohn’s disease.
Other food sources of B vitamins:
B1 and B2 are found in cereals, whole grains, and enriched refined grains. B1 is also found in potatoes, pork, seafood, liver, and kidney beans.
B2 is found in enriched bread, dairy products, liver, and green leafy vegetables.
B3 is found in liver, fish, chicken, lean red meat, nuts, whole grains, dried beans, and enriched refined grains.
B5 is found in almost all foods including brewer’s yeast, avocado, tomatoes, lobster, lentils, duck, sunflower seeds, and salmon.
B6 is found in fish, liver, pork, chicken, potatoes, wheat germ, bananas, and dried beans.
B7 is made by intestinal bacteria and is also in peanuts, liver, egg yolks, bananas, mushrooms, watermelon, and grapefruit.
B9 is in green leafy vegetables, liver, citrus fruits, mushrooms, nuts, peas, dried beans, and wheat bread.
B12 is found in eggs, meat, poultry, shellfish, milk, and milk products.
It is not necessary to take supplements as long as you are eating adequately. However, too much of anything is not good for you. Try mixing Spirulina or bee pollen into your morning smoothies or having a salad with ample amounts of pineapples. Be sure to switch it up!