Top 5 Vitamin B Deficiencies: Symptoms, Causes & Supplements
There are a total of 8 vitamins that fall in the category of the vitamin B complex. B vitamins are water-soluble in nature and, therefore, are not stored inside the body. Due to their excretion from the body, B vitamins should be taken daily through dietary intake or food supplements.
Symptoms of B Vitamin Deficiency
B vitamins are needed in very small amounts by the body; hence it is rare to develop B vitamin deficiency. However, the deficiencies of a couple of B vitamins, B9 and B12, occur very commonly. In addition, people can get deficient in other B vitamins as well, and symptoms related to respected deficiencies are as follows:
1. Low Energy Levels
Vitamin B3, also known as Niacin, converts food into energy. Vitamin B3 acts as a cofactor in energy production which means the deficiency of this vitamin can inhibit or slow down the conversion of food particles into energy molecules (ATPs).
Although anemia is usually referred to as the deficiency of iron in the body, vitamin B9 (Folic Acid) and vitamin B12 (Cyanocobalamin) deficiency can also lead to less production of red blood cells in the body. Therefore, anemia cannot only be entitled to the deficiency of iron but also to the deficiencies of these two B vitamins.
3. Skin, Nails, and Hair Problems
Biotin (B7) – the beauty vitamin; this B vitamin is involved in the production of proteins that help form the structure of hair, skin, and nails. Not just this, biotin also helps the body metabolize fats, which is another helpful macronutrient in the maintenance of healthy skin. Besides B7, the deficiencies of vitamins B1, B2, and B3 can also cause irritation and damage to the skin.
4. Cognitive Problems
Loss of focus, attention deficit, and memory problems come under cognitive problems. The deficiencies of some B vitamins, i.e., vitamins B6, B9, and B12, can cause our cognitive abilities to fade away. All these vitamins are involved in either the production of some neurological factors or the proper transmission of nerve impulses.
Moreover, vitamin B6 is also involved in synthesizing serotonin; a stress-relieving hormone that later turns into melatonin (a hormone that induces sleep). So, a deficiency of this B vitamin can also disturb a regular sleep routine of a person.
5. Cardiovascular Problems
Vitamins B12, B6, and B9 (folic acid) are vital nutrients for the maintenance of cardiovascular health. They work jointly to break down unwanted homocysteine amino acids to produce other amino acids, such as methionine and cysteine, that our body needs.
The deficiency of vitamins B6, B9, and B12 in any way can disrupt this cycle and cause freely available homocysteine in the blood vessels resulting in toxicity of the blood. If it is kept unnoticed, elevated homocysteine levels will increase the risks of dementia, heart disease, and stroke.
The Risks of Developing B Vitamin Deficiencies
Several factors can change the normal digestion and absorption processes of B vitamins. These factors can vary from growing age to genetics, poor diet to alcoholism, and genetics to different medical conditions.
Some medical conditions affect the normal absorption of B vitamins. To avoid the side effect of dietary deficiencies, it is often encouraged to follow a regular and recommended use of B vitamin supplements.
Nutrifactor’s B-50 complex can be the best choice for taking all B vitamins in a single formulation. But always consult with a healthcare professional before using any food supplement.