The following article is a small excerpt from one of my books. I hope you’ll want to learn more and let me help you to get into the best shape of your life.
The B vitamins are a group of eight individual vitamins, often referred to as the B-complex vitamins.
Polish chemist Casimir Funk In 1912 conceived the word vitamin. Funk also isolated vitamin B1 (thiamine1) from rice. This was determined to be one of the vitamins that prevented beriberi, a deficiency disease marked by inflammatory or degenerative changes of your nerves, digestive system and heart.
Vitamins are organic (carbon containing) molecules that mainly function as catalysts for reactions within your body. A catalyst is a substance that allows a chemical reaction to occur using less energy and less time than it would take under normal conditions. If these catalysts are missing, as in a vitamin deficiency, normal body functions can break down and make you susceptible to disease.
Your body requires vitamins in tiny amounts (hundredths of a gram in many cases). We get vitamins from these three primary sources:
- Your body (Vitamin K and some of the B vitamins are produced by bacteria within your intestines, and vitamin D is formed with the help of ultraviolet radiation, or sunshine, on the skin.)
Vitamins are either fat-soluble or water-soluble. The fat-soluble vitamins are A, D, E and K. These vitamins accumulate within the fat stores of your body and within your liver. Fat-soluble vitamins, when taken in large amounts, can become toxic. Water-soluble vitamins include vitamin C, and the B vitamins. Water-soluble vitamins taken in excess are excreted in the urine but are sometimes associated with toxicity. Both the B and C vitamins are also stored in your liver.
The B-complex vitamins are actually a group of eight vitamins, which include thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), pyridoxine (B6), folic acid (B9), cyanocobalamin (B12), pantothenic acid and biotin.
These 8 B vitamins are essential for:
- The breakdown of carbohydrates into glucose thus providing energy for your body
- The breakdown of fats and proteins which helps the normal functioning of your nervous system
- Muscle tone in the stomach and intestinal tract
The best way to get your B vitamins is naturally — through the foods you eat! The B-complex vitamins are found in brewer’s yeast, liver, whole-grain cereals, rice, nuts, milk, eggs, meats, fish, fruits, leafy green vegetables and many other foods.
B vitamins are essential for an astonishing array of life functions and most of us will get all of the B vitamins we need by eating a well-balanced diet.. Some people swear by a B-complex supplement every day, but based on the wide variety of foods containing these vitamins, its not always necessary. For a more detailed list of all the B vitamins check out my book ‘Get Fit Stay Fit’
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