February 10, 2014

Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)

       Pantothenic acid is a vitamin, also known as vitamin B5. It is widely found in both plants and animals including meat, vegetables, cereal grains, legumes, eggs, and milk.

Functions of Vitamin B5 – Pantothenic acid

  • Vitamin B5 is critical to the manufacture of red blood cells, as well as sex and stress-related hormones produced in the adrenal glands, small glands that sit atop the kidneys. 
  • Vitamin B5 is also important in maintaining a healthy digestive tract, and it helps the body use other vitamins, particularly B2 or riboflavin.
  • Body needs pantothenic acid to synthesize cholesterol.
  • Vitamin B5 Pantothenic Acid plays a key role in the healing of wounds and also in the creation of new cells.

Sources

  • Foods which are excellent sources of Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid) include egg, fish, milk and milk products, whole-grain cereals, legumes, yeast, broccoli and other vegetables in the cabbage family, white potatoes, sweet potatoes, and lean beef. 
  • Other food sources which are also high in Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid) include avocados, rice, wheat brans, alfalfa, peanut meal, molasses, condensed fish solutions, cold water fish ovaries, and royal jelly. While all of these food items are high in Vitamin B5, there is a small amount of Vitamin B5 in nearly every source of food

Daily Recommendation

  • 19 years and older: 5 mg
  • Pregnant women: 6 mg
  • Breastfeeding women: 7 mg.




Deficiency

      Vitamin B5 Pantothenic Acid Deficiency is very rare. Since there is such an abundance of Vitamin B5 in multiple food sources there is very little research dedicated to see the results of Vitamin B5 Deficiency. Normally the only cause reported involves either starvation or the willing test patient abstaining from Vitamin B5.

Who are prone to deficiency

  • Alcoholics 
  • Fad dieters 
  • People with chronic diseases 
  • People suffering from eating disorders or those people who suffer from extreme food allergies.

Symptoms

     Symptoms may include impaired energy levels, irritability, fatigue, apathy, acetylcholine synthesis is impaired, neurological symptoms, numbness, parenthesis, muscle cramps, hypoglycemia, increased sensitivity to insulin, restlessness, malaise, sleep disturbances, nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, adrenal insufficiency, and hepatic encephalopathy.

Overdose

      Being a water-soluble vitamin, Vitamin B5 is very unlikely to cause toxicity in humans. There is still no tolerable upper level intake (UL) established for Vitamin B5. The only symptoms which occur from larger dosages of Vitamin B5 are reported to be mild intestinal distress, and diarrhea. For some extremely large dosages of Vitamin B5 there have been some reports of nausea and a lack of fatigue.

Reference

                        Vitamin Info,
                        UMM
                        Mytopform , 
                        Picture

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