B vitamins are often called the energy vitamins.
Although you can follow different ways to boost your energy levels, vitamins, consumed through food and supplements, may be among the safest. B-complex vitamins have proved useful in staving off fatigue and promoting healthy energy levels. Each of these vitamins can work together to provide maximum results, for increased energy levels, without the negative side-effects associated with many stimulants and energy supplements.
Fatigue, irritability, poor concentration, anxiety and depression—all can be signs of a B vitamin deficiency. That’s because compounds in the B complex are needed for everything from the healthy maintenance of brain cells to the metabolism of carbohydrates, the brain’s source of fuel. The B vitamins are also necessary for production of neurotransmitters, which regulate mood and conduct messages through the brain.
Fatigue is best described as a lack of energy, tiredness or weariness. Fatigue can result from taking certain medications or from underlying medical conditions. Stopping or adjusting your medications or treating the condition causing this symptom can help to alleviate it, but sometimes this is not enough. Vitamins can also help you gain energy and alleviate tiredness. Before trying any vitamins to fight fatigue, however, consult your doctor.
B Vitamins for Energy
According to the American Dietetic Association, B vitamins are essential to energy production and synthesis in your body. Vitamin B1, or thiamine, breaks down carbohydrates and proteins into energy. Vitamin B2, or riboflavin, helps with energy production and red blood cell formation. Vitamin B6 is is a major part of your body’s metabolic processes, including energy production. Vitamin B12, found only in animal products, fortified foods or supplements, helps get oxygen to your body’s tissues. Pantothenic acid, or vitamin B5, breaks down fat, protein and carbohydrates in the body into usable energy. B vitamins are available in many vitamin supplements, as well as naturally in many foods.
A varied, healthy diet of lean meats, colorful vegetables and whole grains will usually cover the bases.
B-complex vitamins consist of a combination of eight different B vitamins: B-1, B-2, B-3, B-5, B-6, B-7, B-9 and B-12. All of these B vitamins help the body convert food into fuel. It also includes choline, a nutrient found in eggs that is needed to produce cell membranes and may slow age-related memory loss.
In addition, B vitamins help form red blood cells, which are used to deliver oxygen throughout the body. Without oxygen, there is no energy.
The role of B vitamins in unlocking the energy within calories is what provides you with energy. The body requires vitamin B-1 to produce adenosine triphosphate (ATP), a substance required by every cell in the body for energy. While each B vitamin has its own functions, you need to consume all of them in proper amounts to make them more effective. As an example, your body needs B-6 in order to absorb vitamin B-12.
The subgroup of B6, B12 and folate is the subject of much research. Sufficient intake lowers rates of birth defects, cardiovascular disease, depression, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. The three work together and even marginal deficiencies have large effects.
B6 and B12 contribute to the myelin sheath around nerve cells, which speeds signals through the brain. B12 and folic acid together are needed for making normal cells, including blood cells. Inadequate B12 or folic acid can yield blood cells unable to carry vital oxygen to the brain.
B-12 may be the most well-known of all the B vitamins for its role in increasing energy levels. B-12 is used for boosting mood, energy and concentration. Vitamin B-12 deficiency, on the other hand, is characterized by low energy conditions, including fatigue and weakness, among other health concerns. B-12 is not found in plants. It must be obtained from animal products such as meat, eggs, poultry and dairy. B-12 can also be obtained through supplements and injections for those who are deficient.
This vitamin, also known as cobalamin, helps to create energy by converting carbohydrates into glucose. When you have low vitamin B12 levels, you may experience shortness of breath, tingling in the toes and fingers, fatigue, diarrhea, numbness or nervousness, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. You can take B12 in supplement form or as an injection, or find it in foods such as fish, dairy products and eggs. Certain medications, however, may decrease vitamin B12 levels in the body and may not be taken with a B12 supplement, including tetracycline antibiotics, anticonvulsants, colchicine, H2 blockers, proton pump inhibitors, chemotherapy medications, bile acid sequestrates and metformin.
It is important to note that overall wellness can be rooted from ample energy in the body. This is truly where the heart, mind, and body can be absolutely healthy. And all this can be achieved with the help of B vitamins complex supplements.