Having a good immune system is vital to enabling good health, and people are increasingly taking responsibility and control of their diets with food that is both tasty and nutritious. B vitamins are critical to women’s health and well-being—and most don’t know that they can be found in our diet.
There are actually eight B vitamins and you may know them by number or by name.
- B1 or thiamin
- B2 or riboflavin
- B3 or niacin
- B5 or pantothenic acid
- B6 or pyridoxine
- B7 or biotin
- B9 or folic acid (or folate)
- B12 or cobalamin
Together, the group of B vitamins is referred to as vitamin B complex. These water-soluble vitamins are critical to cell metabolism. The B vitamins play several important roles in the body, including: promoting cell growth and division, maintaining healthy skin and muscle tone, supporting and increasing the rate of metabolism, and enhancing immune and nervous system function,
It is important to ensure that your diet contains plenty of B-rich foods, such as dark, leafy greens, and whole grains. Some people will find they still need to supplement with a B complex vitamin—especially vegetarians or vegans who consume no animal products, as animal products are considered the only natural source of B12.
Good sources of B vitamins include:
- Legumes are a food group that includes beans, lentils, and garbanzo beans. In addition to being a rich source of B vitamins, legumes can also help lower your blood sugar and cholesterol.
- Avocados contain almost 20 vitamins and minerals. Just 1 cup of avocados (150 grams) contains 30% of your daily folate requirement and 23% of vitamin B6.
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