Welcome to the next in the series on nutrients the body needs to be health and today another B Vitamin that works with other B Vitamins but also has its own role to play in the body.
You can find the other posts on the B vitamins in the Health Column directory: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/smorgasbord-health-column-news-nutrients-health-conditions-anti-aging/
Pantothenic acid gets its name from the Greek word pantos, meaning everywhere; because it is available in such a wide variety of foods. The problem is that much of a foods content of B5 is lost through cooking; which in another reason for eating as many fruits and vegetables as possible in the raw state.
B5 is one of the eight water-soluble B vitamins which cannot be stored by the body and have to be replenished in your daily diet. We have already covered B1, B2, and B3 and like the others B5 plays an important role in the conversion of carbohydrates into glucose, which is burned to produce energy.
These nutrients are also needed to breakdown fats and proteins as well as promoting the health of the nervous system, skin, hair, eyes and importantly this month, the liver.
Vitamin B5 has a number of roles in the body some more critical than others. One job that is vitally important is assisting in the manufacture of red blood cells as well as sex and stress related hormones.
- Without B5 our digestive tract would become unhealthy and we would be unable to use other vitamins as effectively. It is sometimes referred to as the ‘anti-stress’ vitamin because it is believed to enhance the activity of the immune system and help the body overcome stressful conditions.
- Currently research is looking into the benefits of B5 and treatment for elevated LDL (unhealthy) cholesterol but there are other areas where the vitamin may be beneficial.
- Some studies are indicating that B5 may speed up wound healing especially following surgery and as part of a B-complex supplement it may help recovery from major burns.
- Arthritis has also come under the microscope as blood tests taken from arthritis sufferers’ show that they were suffering from a deficiency of pantothenic acid, but more study will be needed to confirm this. (I will be covering Arthritis later in the week)
- There are rumours that taking B5 can help with wrinkles and stop your hair greying but this is not proven. However, this does not stop the cosmetic industry from claiming that shampoo and other products containing synthesised B5 can add lustre to your locks!
What are the symptoms of a deficiency?
If you are following a healthy eating plan with lots of fresh fruit, vegetables and wholegrains you will be unlikely to be suffering from B5 deficiency.
If you are suffering from a mild to moderate deficiency you might suffer from the following symptoms.
- tingling in the hands,
- abdominal pains,
- burning feet,
- muscle weakness
In extreme cases personality changes can take place as well as heart problems.
What are the dietary sources of B5?
As I have mentioned, there are a large variety of sources for the vitamin including fresh meats, vegetables and wholegrains.
If you like mushrooms and in particular Shitake mushrooms you will find that by including two or three times a week you will be getting a great B5 hit. Dairy products including cheese contain healthy amounts as do avocados, egg yolks, proteins such as beef, turkey and other poultry, shellfish and oily fish such as salmon and trout, peanuts and lentils and strawberries.
Supplements containing B5.
If you feel that your daily diet contains sufficient B-vitamins including B5 but you are still suffering from arthritis or stress related conditions; seek the advice of a medical expert who can advise you on the dosage of any supplements including B5.
If you take a multi-vitamin and mineral as I do, you will find that all the B vitamins are present and it is also sold separately under the names pantothenic acid and calcium pantothenate. You can also buy B-complex formulations, but do check that they are from a high quality producer. I have recently switched my supplements over to the spray formats which are absorbed directly into the bloodstream. To test this claim I used the spray for three months and then switched back to a multi-vitamin tablet for a month.. Within a couple of weeks, I found that I had not as much energy and switched back again.
As with all supplements you should do your research and buy the best quality product. Cheap alternatives claim to be effective but usually have less of the essential ingredient and the rest made up by fillers.
©Sally Cronin Just Food for Health – 1999 – 2018
A little bit about me nutritionally.
A little about me from a nutritional perspective. Although I write a lot of fiction, I actually wrote my first two books on health, the first one, Size Matters, a weight loss programme 20 years ago. I qualified as a nutritional therapist and practiced in Ireland and the UK as well as being a consultant for radio. My first centre was in Ireland, the Cronin Diet Advisory Centre and my second book, Just Food for Health was written as my client’s workbook. Here are my health books including a men’s health manual and my anti-aging book.
All available in Ebook from: http://www.amazon.com/Sally-Cronin/e/B0096REZM2
And Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sally-Georgina-Cronin/e/B003B7O0T6
Comprehensive guide to the body, and the major organs and the nutrients needed to be healthy 360 pages, A4: http://www.moyhill.com/html/just_food_for_health.html
Thank you for dropping in and if you have any questions fire away.. If you would like to as a private question then my email is firstname.lastname@example.org. I am no longer in practice and only too pleased to help in any way I can. thanks Sally