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This Vitamin is a Women’s Best Friend

Yes, ladies, this is the ONE vitamin that needs to be in your pantry.

Which vitamin is it that a woman truly needs to live her best life? A high-quality B-Complex. I always knew B-Vitamins were great, but after doing more research, they should sit pretty next to our favorite face wash. They are literally critical to good health for our nervous system, hormones, skin, mood, fertility, and more. Below, I will go over each B Vitamin that you would need in high-quality complex, food sources (1), recommended daily intake amount (2) and their benefits and I also give you some great brand faves.

So Let's Review the B's!

Thiamine - AKA B1(10–100 mg)

Thiamine's purpose in the body is to help relieve or alleviate stress. When it comes to our appearance and skin health, this B vitamin also controls our sensitivity to products or external stressors. If Low levels of B1 are an issue it can lead to unnecessary redness, dry skin, cracked lips, or even acne.

Food Sources: Nutritional Yeast, Seaweed, Sunflower seeds, Macadamias, Black Beans, Lentils, Navy Beans, White Beans

Note: Thiamine is stored primarily in the liver, but storage only lasts at most 18 days — which is why you need to consume thiamine foods regularly.

Riboflavin - AKA B2 (10–50 mg)

This is the don dada vitamin for youthful skin, and where vitamin B gets it's all its glory for assisting with anti-aging. There are large amounts of antioxidant properties in B2 work which means it combats free radicals in the body (by-products that cause aging lines and wrinkles). By keeping your body and skin toxin-free from ingesting B2, you're increasing the body's blood circulation (which leads to glowing skin).

Food Sources: Beef liver, Natural Yogurt, Beef, Spinach, Almonds, Sundried Tomato’s, eggs, and Feta Cheese.

Note: Vitamin B2 is needed in order to break down proteins into amino acids, fats, and carbohydrates in the form of glucose. This helps convert nutrients from food into usable bodily energy that helps maintain a healthy metabolism. (1)

Niacin - AKA B3 (10-100 mg)

Vitamin B3 is kind of the helper vitamin! It serves as a source of nourishment for the fatty acids that already exist within our skin. It assists in protecting the skin's barrier to the outside elements. Niacin creates a smooth and soft surface on our skin by locking in extra moisture. No more dry skin!

Food Sources: Chicken, liver, tuna, turkey, salmon, sardines, sunflower seeds, green peas, brown rice, avocados, asparagus

Note: Some people use niacin or niacinamide for improving skin health and treating conditions like acne and inflammation. (1)

Pantothenic Acid - AKA B5 (25-100 mg)

When closing the door on dry skin, B5 is a great vitamin to kick patchy skin to the curb! Pantothenic Acid is nutrient-rich as it has the job of maintaining water within the skin. This vitamin locks in moisture to guarantee a healthy and youthful glow, it aids in keeping the skin's surface firm and elastic.

Food Sources: Beef liver, avocado, sunflower seeds, duck, portabello mushrooms, eggs, salmon, lentils, sun-dried tomatoes, yogurt, broccoli.

Pyridoxine - AKA B6 (25-100 mg)

We all know that hormones play a vital role in our skin health. We can't have a young-looking complexion without a healthy endocrine and adrenal system. Proper vitamin B6 levels are a critical component of good health. B6 is a part of more than 100 chemical reactions in your body! B6 balances out estrogen and progesterone, decreasing estrogen dominance and balancing out our hormones. (3) Thankfully, having the necessary amount of vitamin B6 in our system can help maintain and regulate our body's hormones properly.

Food sources: Turkey breast, grass-fed beef, pistachios, tuna, pinto beans, avocados, chicken breast, sesame seed

Biotin - AKA B7 (100-300 mcg)

To keep a youthful-looking complexion, it's necessary to pay attention (and rebuild or repair) the proteins in our skin - proteins like amino acids. B7 keeps our fatty and amino acids thriving and healthy to maintain beautiful skin.

Food Sources: liver, eggs, yeast, salmon, cheese, avocado, raspberries, cauliflower.

Folate - AKA B9 (400 mcg) (800 for fertility)

A great way to flush out skin cells, folate is a great vitamin for the face as it repairs and grows new cells. While overtaking supplements can be innocently excreted through our urine, overtaking B9 can actually be bad for the skin - causing redness and blemishes.

Food Sources: Spinach, asparagus, avocados, beans.

Methylcobalamin - AKA B12 (400 mcg)

The most commonly referenced B vitamin, B12 is known as the energy supplier. It earns the reputation by aiding in blood circulation throughout the body. When the blood is moving, the skin in thriving! Taking (Whether pill or sublingually) B12 is a great way to even skin tone and maintain proper pigmentation (including the minimization of dark spots).

Food Sources: Beef liver, sardines, Atlantic mackerel, lamb, wild-caught salmon, nutritional yeast.

My Personal Favorite Brands

Mega Food B-Centered

Mega Food B Complex

Emerald Health Women’s Plant-Based Multivitamin

Emerald Health Women’s Plant-Based Prenatal

MegaFood’s Women’s One Daily

Of course, you can never out-supplement a bad diet, so along with getting B vitamins from your diet (by eating to nourish), a plant-based multivitamin and EPA/DHA is essential. Biochemically, some vitamins cannot be “activated” without another, that’s why a multivitamin is great to incorporate. For example, without zinc, vitamin A cannot be converted to its active form, and without Vitamin C, collagen synthesis is impaired.


The Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine

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