What Are B Vitamins Used For?


B Vitamins, a group of eight water soluble vitamins, are essential nutrients that are critical to the healthy functioning of the human body. Each of these water-soluble vitamins serves a different, essential purpose. Read on to learn more about what B Vitamins are used for.

Vitamin B1

Vitamin B1, or Thiamine, helps to maintain the healthy, normal functioning of the cardiovascular, muscular and nervous system. It aids in blood formation and is used in the biosynthesis of cell constituents such as neurotransmitters. It also facilitates the metabolism of carbohydrates in the body. This vitamin is often used to alleviate tooth and gum pain following dental surgery.

Vitamin B2

Vitamin B2, or Riboflavin, is essential in the production of antibodies and the formation of red blood cells. It is also used by the body to metabolize fatty acids, amino acids and carbohydrates. Vitamin B2 plays an important role in the growth and development of the human body. Vitamin B2 contributes to healthy skin, nails and hair.

Vitamin B3

Vitamin B3, or niacin, plays an important role in regulating cholesterol levels in the body, increasing HDL ("good") cholesterol while lowering LDL ("bad") cholesterol. It is also essential in maintaining the proper functioning of the nervous system, as well as the normal secretion of stomach fluids and bile.

Vitamin B5

Vitamin B5, or Pantothenic acid, is important in supporting the adrenal gland system. In addition to regulating the secretion of hormones like cortisone, this vitamin is also used to manufacture steroid hormones, lipids and neurotransmitters. Vitamin B3 helps prevent and treat dermatological problems such as acne and pimples.

Vitamin B6

Vitamin B6, or Pyridoxine, is required to regulate hormonal changes in the female body. It also facilitates the metabolism and assimilation of proteins and fats, while facilitating the growth of new cells and tissue in the body. It also helps to protect against skin disorders such as dandruff, eczema and psoriasis.

Vitamin B7

Vitamin B7, or Biotin, facilitates a number of metabolic chemical conversions in the body. It plays an important role in the Kreb cycle, a process by which energy gets released from food in the body. It also aids in maintaining healthy hair, nails and nerve tissue as well as regulating blood sugar levels.

Vitamin B9 & Vitamin B12

Vitamin B9, or Folic acid, is essential in the healthy development of the foetus, helping prevent birth disorders. It is also a galactologue, helping to stimulate lactation in breast feeding mothers. Other uses for this vitamin include pain relief, preventing food poisoning and getting rid of intestinal parasites. Vitamin B12 or cyanocobalamin, is essential in the production and regeneration of red-blood cells. It contributes to the proper utilization of proteins, lipids and carbohydrates in the body, and helps increase energy levels in the body. Vitamin B12 is also important for the healthy functioning of the brain, and helps enhance concentration and short-term memory.

About this Author

Based in Blue Springs (MO), the ArmChairGeek has worked as a freelancer since 2007. An alumni of the University of California, San Marcos, he specializes in writing health-related eBooks, articles and other web content for a number of websites, including Demand Studios, eHow and WiseGeek.

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