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VITAMINS

VITAMIN B GROUP

The vitamin B group consists mostly of eight vitamins: B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B5 (pantothenic acid), B6, B7 (biotin), B12 and B9 (folic acid). They often can be found in different combinations in products under the expression the 'vitamin B complex'.

All B vitamins are water soluble, and each has a role in metabolism. They help the body get energy from carbohydrates, fat and protein from food, which is why not getting enough B vitamins may result in a lack of energy.

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Vitamin B1 for example was discovered as a result of an ailment among some sailors, prisoners and Asians. The ailment, called “beriberi”, the result of a vitamin B deficiency, caused symptoms like mental confusion, high blood pressure, and even difficulties with walking. One way to prevent beriberi was discovered by Dutch physician, Christiaan Eijkman in 1897 who found that a diet of unpolished rice husks prevented the ailment.

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