1. Part of the coenzyme thiamin pyrophosphate (TPP) involved in carbohydrate metabolism and 2. Coenzyme involved in branched-chain amino acid metabolism.
Deficiency: Beriberi, anorexia and weight loss, apathy, decreased short-term memory, confusion and irritability, muscle weakness, and enlarged heart.
1. Coenzymes, including flavin mononucleotide (FMN) and flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD), involved in oxidation-reduction reactions for metabolism of carbohydrates and fats.
Deficiency: Ariboflavinosis, sore throat, swelling of mouth and throat, cheilosis (dry, cracked lips), angular stomatitis (inflammation of the mucous membranes of the mouth), glossitis (magenta tongue), seborrheic dermatitis (inflammation of oil glands in the skin), and anemia (lower than normal amount of red blood cells).
1. Coenzymes in carbohydrate and fatty acid metabolism, including nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+ and NADH) and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NAPD+) and 2. Plays a role in DNA replication and repair and cell differentiation.
Toxicity (due to excessive supplementation): flushing, liver dysfunction and damage, glucose intolerance, and blurred vision and edema of eyes.
Deficiency: Pellagra, pigmented rash, vomiting, constipation or diarrhea, bright red tongue, depression, apathy, headache, fatigue, and loss of memory. (3 D's: Dermatitis, Diarrhea, and Dementia)
Vitamin B6 Functions
1. Part of coenzyme (pyridoxal phosphate, or PLP) involved in amino acid metabolism, synthesis of blood cells, and carbohydrate metabolism, 2. Involved in the metabolism of homocysteine.
Vitamin B6 Toxicity
Toxicity (due to excessive supplementation): sensory neuropathy and lesions in the skin.
Vitamin B6 Deficiency
Deficiency: Seborrheic dermatitis, microcytic anemia, convulsions, and depression and confusion.
1. Coenzyme tetrahydrofolate (THF) (or tetrahydrofolic acid, THFA) involved in DNA synthesis and amino acid metabolism and 2. Involved in the metabolism of homocysteine.
Toxicity (due to excessive supplementation): A masking of symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency and neurological damage.
Deficiency: Macrocytic anemia, weakness and fatigue, difficulty concentrating, irritability, headache, palpitations, shortness of breath, elevated levels of homocysteine in the blood, and neural tube defects in the developing fetus.
Vitamin B12 Functions
1. Part of coenzymes that assist with formation of blood, nervous system function, and homocysteine metabolism.
Vitamin B12 Deficiency
Deficiency: Pernicious anemia, pale skin, diminished energy and low exercise tolerance, fatigue, shortness of breath, palpitations, tinging and numbness in extremities, abnormal gait, memory loss, poor concentration, disorientation, and dementia.
Pantothenic Acid Functions
1. Component of coenzymes (coenzyme A or CoA and acyl carrier protein (ACP)) that assist with fatty acid metabolism.
Pantothenic Acid Deficiency
Deficiency: Rare; only seen in people fed diets with virtually none of this nutrient.
Deficiency: Red, scaly skin rash, depression, lethargy, hallucinations, burning, tingling, tickling, paresthesia of the extremities.
1. Assists with homocysteine metabolism, 2. Accelerates the synthesis and release of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, 3. Assists in synthesis of phospholipids and other components of cell membranes, and 4. Assists in the transport and metabolism of fats and cholesterol.
Toxicity (due to excessive supplementation): Fishy body odor, vomiting, excess salivation, sweating, diarrhea, and low blood pressure.
Good sources of Thiamin
Ham and other pork products. Sunflower seeds, beans, oat bran, mixed dishes that contain whole or enriched grains and meats, tuna fish, soy milk, and soy-based meat substitutes. Enriched and whole-grain foods.
Good sources of Riboflavin
Eggs, meats, including organ meats, milk and milk products, broccoli, enriched bread and grain products, and ready-to-eat cereals.
Good sources of Vitamin B6
Meat, fish (especially tuna), poultry, and organ meats. Enriched ready-to-eat cereals, white potatoes and other starchy vegetables, bananas, fortified soy-based meat substitutes.
Good sources of Pantothenic Acid
Chicken, beef, egg, yolk, potatoes, oat cereals, tomato products, whole grains, and organ meats.
Good sources of Biotin
Ready-to-eat cereals, beef liver, mushrooms, duck, sunflower seeds, yogurt (plain), potatoes, green peas, and turkey.
Deficiency in this nutrient is seen in people who consume a large number of raw egg whites over long periods of time.
People with heavy alcohol consumption may get Wernicke-Korsakoff Syndrome, the alcohol-related deficiency of this nutrient. Symptoms include tremors, confusion, and impairment of memory.
Plays such a critical role in transanimation. Inadequate amounts of this nutrient makes all amino acids become essential.
Vitamin B6, folate, and Vitamin B12
If the body is low in any of these three nutrients, then blood levels of homocysteine will increase due to incomplete metaboilism of methionine.
1. Critical for synthesis of thyroid hormones, and 2. Assists in temperature regulation, maintenance of resting metabolic rate, and supports reproduction and growth.
Deficiency: Goiter, or enlargement of thyroid gland. Hypothyroidism, which includes decreased body temperature, inability to tolerate cold temperatures, weight gain, fatigue, and sluggishness. During pregnancy, causes a form of mental retardation in the infant called cretinism.
1. Enhances the ability of insulin to transport glucose from the bloodstream into cells, 2. Plays an important role in the metabolism of RNA and DNA, and 3. Important for healthy immune function and growth.
Deficiency: Inhibition of uptake of glucose by the cells, leading to rise in blood glucose and insulin. Elevated blood lipid levels. Damage to brain and nervous system.
1. Coenzyme involved in energy metabolism and in the formation of urea, 2. Assists in the synthesis of the protein matrix found in bone tissue and in building cartilage, and 3. An integral component of superoxide dimutase, an antioxidant enzyme.
Toxicity: Impairment of the neuromuscular system, causing muscle spasms and tremors.
Deficiency: Impaired growth and reproductive function, reduced bone density and impaired skeletal growth, impaired glucose and lipid metabolism, and skin rash.
Good sources of Iodine
Saltwater fish, shrimp, seaweed, iodized salt, and white and whole wheat breads made with iodized salt and bread conditioners.
Good sources of Chromium
Mushrooms, prunes, dark chocolate, nuts, whole grains, cereals, asparagus, brewer's yeast, some beers, red wine, and meats (especially processed meats).
1. Component of B vitamins thiamin and biotin, 2. As part of the amino acids methionine and cysteine, helps stabilize the three-dimensional shapes of proteins in our bodies, 3. Assists liver in the detoxification of alcohol and various drugs, and 4. Assists in maintaining acid-base balance.