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Vitamin B complex – everything you need to know about vitamin B

July 23, 2020
  • Nutrition
  • Nutrition
Vitamin B complex – everything you need to know about vitamin B

Vitamin B can do a lot – the 8 different B vitamins participate in our energy production, the supply of our nervous system, the brain activity, as well as in our mental health. But our digestion, muscles, skin, hair and eyes also benefit from the B vitamins. And because these vitamins are so versatile, we must not neglect them in a healthy diet. You want to know more? In this blog post we answer the most important questions about vitamin B! 

What exactly is vitamin B? 

Basically, all vitamins are essential substances that the human body cannot produce itself. Therefore, we have to absorb these substances through food. 

The B vitamins are a very heterogeneous group, so they do not differ very much. And unlike vitamins A, D, E and K, the B vitamins are water-soluble and not fat-soluble. The body does not need any additional fat in order to be able to absorb the vitamin B substances. 

The 8 B vitamins – a great team 

Today, 8 vitamins belong to the B vitamins. As it has been discovered over time that some substances that originally belonged to the B vitamins do not have the character of vitamins, the numbering of the vitamins is not continuous. 

So the following substances are therefore considered to be B vitamins today: 

  • Vitamin B1: thiamine 
  • Vitamin B2: riboflavin 
  • Vitamin B3: nicotinic acid 
  • Vitamin B5: pantothenic acid 
  • Vitamin B6: pyridoxine, pyridoxamine and pyridoxal 
  • Vitamin B7: also vitamin H or Biotin 
  • Vitamin B9: folic acid or vitamin B11 
  • Vitamin B12: cobalamin 

What effect does vitamin B have on our body and mental health? 

Strong nerves with vitamin B1 (thiamine) 

You probably already know vitamin B1 as a mood vitamin. There is a reason for this, because thiamine is basically very important for the carbohydrate metabolism and the associated energy production. Thiamine therefore provides us with energy in the form of sugar. However, sugar in this sense is not a negative thing – it means important healthy carbohydrates. Good carbohydrates can be found mainly in oat flakes.

Detox with vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 

Vitamin B2 is also essential for energy metabolism. However, the greatest advantage of riboflavin is its detoxifying effect on the liver. Vitamin B2 is also involved in the formation of vitamin B3, B6, folic acid and vitamin K and ensures healthy and beautiful skin, hair and nails. 

Healthy cholesterol levels with vitamin B3 (nicoic acid / niacin) 

Vitamin B3 plays a very important role in fat and cholesterol metabolism. Niacin is involved in the regulation of blood fats and cholesterol by creating a healthy balance between LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) and HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol). 

Healing wounds with vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid) 

Vitamin B5 promotes regeneration and is therefore very important for wound healing. In addition, we need pantothenic acid to build our connective tissue, mucous membranes, hair and nails. Like the other B vitamins, it is very important in the entire energy metabolism. 

Growing with vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) 

Our heart, brain and liver need vitamin B6. Only then can they fulfil their functions. In protein metabolism, the vitamin is particularly important during growth. It also contributes to the transmission of stimuli between nerve cells.

Beautiful skin, hair & nails with vitamin B7 (biotin, vitamin H) 

If you want to have beautiful skin, hair & nails, vitamin B7 is for you. Because the vitamin is involved in cell growth and in DNA and protein synthesis. Thus skin and hair can be preserved and growth can be promoted. 

Richtig Frühstücken - gesünder in den Tag starten

Stay healthy during pregnancy with vitamin B9 (folic acid) 

In the past, vitamin B9 was called vitamin B11 and today it is more commonly known as folic acid. Especially women in pregnancy have an increased need for folic acid. This is because it is a cell vitamin that is important for all growth processes involving cell division. 

But for folic acid to be activated at all, a particularly important vitamin is necessary. This is vitamin B12. 

Cell renewal with vitamin B12 (cobalamin) 

Vitamin B12 is also involved in cell division and growth. Thus our blood can be newly formed in the body. Vitamin B12 is one of the most important vitamins and should not be neglected! 

Das Vitamin B12 - warum du alles darüber wissen solltest!
Vitamin B12 is mainly found in animal products such as fish, meat, dairy products and eggs.

What are the symptoms and causes of vitamin B deficiency? 

As you have already read, the B vitamins are responsible for many areas in our body. That is why various deficiency symptoms can occur. How do you recognize them? For example, a vitamin B deficiency can lead to fatigue, loss of appetite, depressive moods, insomnia and susceptibility to infections. 

Our nervous system can also suffer from too little vitamin B. This can often lead to pain and sensory disorders. Further signs of an undersupply can be inflammations and changes in the skin and mucous membranes. 

This sounds worse than it actually is. A vitamin deficiency is not easy to diagnose, as there are many different deficiency symptoms, but if you suspect a vitamin deficiency, you can simply have your blood values checked by a doctor! J 

And what can be the cause of a vitamin deficiency? Malnutrition is the most common. Therefore, you should eat at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day! 

Prevent vitamin B deficiency with oats and porridge! 

Vitamin B is mainly found in whole grain products! That is why a nutritious, warm breakfast with oats is the ideal start to the day! For example, you can prepare a delicious porridge and top it off with nuts. This way you get twice as much vitamin B! 

You can easily do this with Overnight Oats! You can prepare them the night before and top them off with fresh fruit in the morning and your healthy breakfast is ready! 

A recipe rich in vitamin B is our basic recipe for oatmeal: 

Print Recipe
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Basic recipe: Oatmeal

A simple basic recipe for the popular porridge that has become an integral part of most breakfast tables.
Prep Time2 mins
Let porridge steep3 mins
Total Time5 mins
Calories: 320kcal

Ingredients

  • 250 ml milk or a plant-based alternative
  • 50 g oat flakes
  • A pinch of salt
  • 2 tbsp honey or agave syrup
  • 1/2 tbsp cinnamon 

Instructions

  • Heat up the oat flakes with a pinch of salt and the sweetener of your choice (honey or agave syrup) in the milk or plant-based drink (do not forget to stir well).
  • Let the porridge steep for 3 minutes.
  • Put the porridge into a bowl and sprinkle it with cinnamon.
  • Enjoy!

Nutrition

Calories: 320kcal

Which foods contain a lot of vitamin B? 

In the table you will find all the B vitamins, their daily requirements and the foods in which the vitamin is found: 

vitamin B1 – thiamine 1 – 1.3 mg Sunflower seeds 
Pine nuts
Oat flakes
Wild rice 
Tuna 
Wholemeal products (porridgemuesli, bread, wholemeal pasta) 
Pulses (lentils, chickpeas, beans) 
Potatoes
Peanuts
Peas 
Vitamin B2 – Riboflavin 1.2 – 1.5 mg Eggs
Meat & Fish 
Nuts 
Mushrooms 
Dairy products 
Vitamin B3 – Nicotinic acid / Niacin 13 – 17 mg Meat & Fish Eggs
Dairy products Mushrooms 
Wholemeal products (porridgemuesli, bread, wholemeal pasta) 
Peanuts 
cashew nuts 
Wheat bran 
Dates 
Pulses (lentils, chickpeas, beans) 
Vitamin B5 – Pantothenic acid approx. 6 mg Offal 
Eggs 
Wholemeal products (porridgemuesli, bread, wholemeal pasta) 
vitamin B6 – pyridoxine 1.2 – 1.6 mg Yeast 
Fish
Dairy products 
Corn
Soy
Green vegetables 
vitamin B7 – biotin 30 – 60 μg Milk
Egg Yolk 
Pulses (lentils, chickpeas, beans) 
Nuts 
Vitamin B9 – Folic acid approx. 0.4 mg Spinach 
Yeast 
vitamin B12 – cobalamin approx. 3 μg Meat & Fish 
Dairy products 

Which vitamin B is good for the nerves? 

If you often have to deal with stress, you should make sure you take in plenty of vitamin B. For example, vitamin B2 protects the cells from oxidative stress. Vitamins B2, B3, B6, B12 (and vitamin C) reduce fatigue. And vitamins B1, B3, B6, B7, B12 (and vitamin C) contribute to normal mental function. 

It is best to eat a breakfast rich in vitamin B in the morning with wholemeal products, dairy products and nuts. Our porridges and mueslis  are very suitable for this, because oatmeal in particular is a great vitamin-rich breakfast base! They also keep you full for a long time, your nerves are strengthened and nothing stands in the way of a stress-free morning. 

Can vitamin B be overdosed? 

The answer to the question of whether vitamin B can be overdosed is quite simple: overdosing via the normal food intake is ruled out. If there is an excess of vitamin B, it is usually excreted via the kidneys. So you do not need to worry about this! 

If an overdose should occur, then only through the excessive intake of food supplements. So if you want to take supplements, check with your doctor before you do so and nothing can go wrong! 

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