Best Food Sources of Vitamin B and signs of its deficiency

B vitamins are a class of water-soluble vitamins that play important roles in cell metabolism. Though these vitamins share similar names, they are chemically distinct compounds that often coexist in the same foods. In general, dietary supplements containing all eight are referred to as a vitamin B complex. Here are 15 best sources of Vitamin B. Vitamin B is found in a variety of foods such as meat, wholegrains, and fruits. Here are Best Food Sources of Vitamin B and signs of its deficiency.

Best sources of Vitamin B

Get all eight B vitamins ​from a variety of foods:

  1. Whole grains (brown rice, barley, millet)
  2. Meat (red meat, poultry, fish)
  3. Eggs and dairy products (milk, cheese)
  4. Legumes (beans, lentils)
  5. ​Seeds and nuts (sunflower seeds, almonds)
  6. Dark, leafy vegetables (broccoli, spinach, kai lan)
  7. Fruits (citrus fruits, avocados, bananas)

Signs of vitamin B deficiency

The most common signs of vitamin B deficiency, specific to individual B vitamins, are given below:

Vitamin B6 deficiency:

  1. Anaemia
  2. Skin disorders such as seborrheic dermatitis
  3. Inflammation of the mouth (oral ulcers)
  4. Soreness and cracks at the corners of the mouth, chapped lips
  5. Tingling or numbness in hands and feet
  6. Irritability, confusion and depression

Vitamin B9 deficiency (folate or folic acid):

  1. Anaemia
  2. Increased risk of birth defect (in pregnancy)
  3. Mood changes (irritability, forgetfulness)
  4. Sore mouth and diarrhoea

Vitamin B12 deficiency

  1. Anaemia
  2. Tingling or numbness in hands and feet
  3. Memory lapses
  4. Mood changes (mental confusion, agitation)
  5. Unsteadiness and poor muscle coordination

Vitamin B2

The signs and symptoms of riboflavin deficiency (also known as ariboflavinosis) include

  1. Skin disorders
  2. Hyperemia (excess blood) and edema of the mouth and throat
  3. Angular stomatitis (lesions at the corners of the mouth)
  4. Cheilosis (swollen, cracked lips)
  5. Hair loss,
  6. Reproductive problems
  7. Sore throat
  8. Itchy and red eyes, and degeneration of the liver and nervous system

While a vitamin B supplement may be beneficial in certain cases, it’s always best to seek dietary sources first and to discuss any supplements you want to take with your healthcare professional.

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