What is the role of B vitamins in the body?

B vitamins, often referred to as B complex, include a number of individual B vitamins, such as B1 (thiamin), B3 (niacin), B9 (folic acid) and B12 (cobalamin). Together they are involved in a number of important processes in the body, including growth and development, making energy from the food you eat and breaking it down to use, forming red blood cells to prevent anemia and keeping the nervous system in working order.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
B1 and B2 help the body produce energy and work with enzymes that affect the muscles, nerves and heart. Sources of B1: cereals, whole grains, potatoes, pork, seafood, liver, kidney beans. Sources of B2: cereals, whole grains, enriched bread, dairy products, liver, leafy green vegetables.

B3 plays a role in energy production in cells and helps keep skin, nervous and digestive systems healthy. Sources: liver, fish, chicken, lean red meat, nuts, whole grains, dried beans.

B5 plays a role in normal growth and development. Sources: B5 is present in a wide variety of foods and high in both plant and animal sources.

B6 assists in breaking down protein and helps to maintain the health of red blood cells, the nervous system and parts of the immune system. Sources: fish, liver, pork, chicken, potatoes, wheat germ, bananas, dried beans.

B7 also helps break down protein and carbohydrates, and aids in healthy hormone function. Sources: peanuts, liver, egg yolks, bananas, mushrooms, watermelon, grapefruit.

B9 helps make deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and plays a role in the production of red blood cells. Sources: leafy green vegetables, liver, citrus fruits, mushrooms, nuts, peas, dried beans, wheat bread.

B12 is essential to the body's growth and development; plays a role in the production of blood cells; aids nervous system function; and helps the body utilize folic acid and carbohydrates. Sources: eggs, meat, poultry, shellfish, milk, milk products.
This content originally appeared on doctoroz.com

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.