What are B vitamin complexes?
There are 8 B vitamins, which play many roles in the body and allow it to function properly, as we shall see.
What are the benefits of a vitamin B complex for children?
Connection between nerves and muscles in children
How to explain nerves and muscles?
The nervous system includes the sensory organs as well as the brain, the spinal cord and all the nerves. All these elements are divided between the central nervous system and the peripheral nervous system. The former sends orders to the body and processes information. The second allows the information to circulate to the organs.
Muscles are tissues that can contract and become shorter. This contraction occurs when the nerves send a command to the muscles to move.
Nutrient compounds involved
For the nervous system to function normally, various compounds and nutrients are needed. For example, vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, B8 and B12 play a role in the nervous system
Digestion and energy production
How can digestion and energy production be explained?
Digestion refers to the transformation of food into small particles, called nutrients, that can be used by the body. From these nutrients, the body can, for example, produce the energy it needs to function.
Essential nutrient compounds for energy production
Among the nutrients produced by the digestion of food are the B vitamins. Some of them, like vitamin B8, are used to contribute to the normal metabolism of macronutrients, i.e., fats, carbohydrates, and proteins. Others will be involved in energy metabolism, i.e., in the body’s reactions to produce energy. Among these, there are for example vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B8 and B12.
How can fatigue be explained?
Fatigue is a normal, temporary phenomenon that occurs after significant intellectual or physical activity. However, fatigue becomes abnormal when it does not disappear after periods of sleep or rest. Thus, fatigue often appears as a symptom in many diseases.
Nutrient compounds to reduce fatigue
For the body to function optimally, certain nutrients are necessary. Thus, vitamins B2, B3, B5, B6, B9 and B12 will help reduce fatigue. They are indeed involved in various mechanisms of the human body allowing the production of energy and the proper use of nutrients.
How much vitamin B complex does a child need?
Depending on the age and sex of the child, the body does not have the same needs. Therefore, health authorities have established recommended daily intakes for the different nutrients. Below are the B vitamins requirements for children from 1 to 17 years old.
5 mg NE*
7,7 mg NE*
9,4 mg NE*
11,1 mg NE*
12,2 mg NE*
5,4 mg NE*
8,3 mg NE*
10 mg NE*
12,3 mg NE*
15,3 mg NE*
NE*= niacin equivalent
Why and how to choose a B vitamin complex?
Symptoms of a lack of B vitamins in children?
Because of the multiple effects of B vitamins on the body, the symptoms linked to a lack of B vitamins are not specific: for example, fatigue, difficulty concentrating, or intestinal problems.
Identifying a good quality B vitamin complex
B vitamins, of which there are 8, exist in different forms. To guarantee the effectiveness of the product, it is necessary to select the most bioavailable forms, i.e., those that will be able to reach the blood and act on the body. Thus, we recommend always selecting natural forms rather than synthetic ones. Therefore, vitamin B12, in the form of methylcobalamin has better effects than its synthetic counterpart, cyanocobalamin. Similarly, providing vitamins B2 and B6 in phosphorylated forms allows direct use for metabolism: therefore, choose a product containing vitamin B2 as riboflavin-5′-phosphate and vitamin B6 as pyridoxal-5′-phosphate.
There are 8 B vitamins, all of which are water-soluble. Vitamins are involved in numerous metabolic reactions at the muscular, nervous, and digestive levels. Thus, vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, B8 and B12 play a role in the nervous system while vitamin B8 is involved in the metabolism of macronutrients. Specific dosages are defined for each age group, but also according to gender. Finally, favoring natural forms of vitamins and/or those with a high efficiency reinforces the effects on the body.
Key take-home messages :
- There are 8 B vitamins: B1 – B2 – B3 – B5 – B6 – B8 – B9 – B12
- Vitamins play multiple roles in the body
- A lack of B vitamins can result in general symptoms such as fatigue, digestive problems, …
- The effectiveness of a B vitamin depends on the form selected
DRV finder, European Food Safety Agency, 2019
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