2. Vitamin B2
Vitamin B2 is also called riboflavin and acts as an antioxidant. B2, like all the B vitamins, is water-soluble and must be provided by a healthy diet. In order to avoid a deficiency, it needs to be replenished every day. Simply put, it is a crucial vitamin for breaking down food components, absorbing nutrients and maintaining healthy tissues. The group of B vitamins is used to digest and extract energy from the foods we eat. They do this by changing nutrients from fats, proteins, and carbohydrates into a usable energy that is called “ATP”.
Vitamin B2 is essential for every single cell in our body to function properly, which means a riboflavin deficiency could result in serious health issues. It’s important to note vitamin B2 is used with other B vitamins to make up the “B Vitamin Complex”. It needs to be present in high enough amounts to allow other B vitamins, including B6 and folic acid to be absorbed into the body to be able to do their jobs. Vitamin B2 assists the body to maintain healthy blood cells, helps boost energy levels, encourages a healthy metabolism, prevents free radical damage and protects our skin and eye health.
A B2 deficiency can result in serious health issues, affecting our metabolism, the immune system, and neural functions. Nerve damage, fatigue, anemia, mouth or lip sores, sore throat, swelling of mucous membranes, skin inflammation and changes in mood, including signs of depression and increased anxiety.
It can be found in meat, fish, and poultry like chicken, turkey, beef, kidneys, liver, and fish. It’s also available in dairy products, eggs, asparagus, avocados, cayenne, kelp, mushrooms, nuts, pumpkin, sweet potatoes, cruciferous vegetables, like spinach, watercress, and broccoli. Whole grain bread, enriched breads and wheat bran are also good sources of Vitamin B2.