Vitamin B5, also called pantothenic acid, is one of the most important vitamins in human health. It is essential for the production of blood cells, and it helps to convert the food you eat into energy. Vitamin B5 is one of eight B vitamins. All the B vitamins help you to convert the protein, carbohydrates, and fats you eat into energy.
Why do we need vitamin B5?
Vitamin B5 is also known as pantothenic acid and is found in many foods.
Vitamin B5 has many important functions. These include:
- converts food into sugar
- to combine cholesterol
- sex drive and stress-related hormones
- forming red blood cells
Like all B vitamins, pantothenic acid helps the body break down fats, carbohydrates, and proteins so that our bodies can use them for energy and build muscle, muscles, and organs.
Vitamin B5 plays a role in synthesizing coenzyme A. Coenzyme A is involved in the synthesis of fatty acids and is essential for the conversion of food into fatty acids and cholesterol.
Coenzyme A is also needed for the production of sphingosine, a fat-like molecule that helps to deliver chemical messages within the body’s cells. The liver needs Coenzyme A to use other drugs and toxins safely.
Vitamin B5 helps maintain a healthy digestive system and helps the body absorb other vitamins, especially vitamin B2. Vitamin B2 helps manage stress, but there is no evidence that pantothenic acid reduces stress.
Vitamin B5 has been shown to reduce the spread of acne and provide benefits to many other areas of the body.
Other studies have shown that vitamin B5 acts as a moisturizer on the skin and improves the healing process of skin wounds.
Some studies have shown that vitamin B5 helps with acne on the face and reduces the number of facial features associated with acne when taken as a dietary supplement. Investigators noted a “significant decrease in the mean total number of lesions” after 12 weeks of taking a B5 dietary supplement. The authors seek further trials to confirm the results.
Cholesterol and Triglycerides
Some studies show that eating vitamin B5 can help lower cholesterol and levels of triglycerides or fats. This method of administration should be followed only under medical supervision.
Some researchers have found that people with rheumatoid arthritis have lower levels of vitamin B5. However, more evidence is needed to confirm these results.
Foods With Vitamin B5
Vitamin B5 is widely found in both animal and plant products.
Meat: Pork, chicken, turkey duck, beef, especially animal organs such as liver and kidneys
Fish: Salmon, lobster, and shellfish.
Cereals: Whole wheat and whole grains. Whole grains are a good source of vitamin B5 but digestion can remove 75 percent of B5 content.
Dairy products: Egg yolk, milk, yogurt, and dairy products.
Legumes: Lentils, split peas, and beans.
Vegetables: Mushrooms, avocados, broccoli, sweet potatoes, corn, cauliflower, kale, and tomatoes.
Other sources of vitamin B5 include brewer’s yeast, peanuts, sunflower seeds, wheat germ, royal jelly, and oatmeal. To ensure adequate nutrition, food should be eaten fresh rather than refined. Like all water-soluble vitamins, vitamin B5 is lost when food is boiled.
Scientists have discovered that bacteria in parts of the colon may produce pantothenic acid, but this has not yet been determined.
The daily diet is recommended
Experts recommend the daily availability of vitamin B5 and recommend:
- Infants 0-6 months – 1.7 milligrams (mg) per day
- Infants 7-12 months – 1.8 mg per day
- Children aged 1 -3 – 2 mg per day
- Children 4-8 years – 3 mg per day
- Children ages 9-13 – 4 mg per day
- Men and women 14 years and older – 5 mg per day
- Pregnant women – 6 mg per day
- Breastfeeding women – 7 mg per day
Vitamin B5 dissolves in water and is excreted in the urine. Our bodies don’t keep it, and we need to eat it every day to supplement our diet.
Side effects and congestion
Pantothenic acid is considered an additive in most cases, but there is not enough evidence to prove that it is effective in most cases.
Vitamin B5 can make a bad treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. For people who live within the recommended daily dose of Vitamin B5, or higher, the use of the supplement may be safe, but anyone considering taking the supplement should consult a physician first.
A very high dose, for example, of 10-20 grams (gm) per day, can cause diarrhea and increase the risk of bleeding. If vitamin B5 is taken as a supplement, it can cause an imbalance of other B vitamins. For this reason, it is best to take a vitamin B complex. This should be taken after meals, with water. Royal jelly contains vitamin B5 so care should be taken not to eat royal gel next to vitamin B5 supplement.
Vitamin B5 can interact with other drugs. It can interfere with the absorption and function of the antibiotic, Tetracycline.
It can also increase the effect of other Alzheimer’s diseases, known as cholinesterase inhibitors. These drugs include donepezil (Aricept), memantine hydrochloride (Ebixa), galantamine (Reminyl), and rivastigmine (Exelon). Taking supplements with these drugs can lead to serious side effects.
People taking antiretroviral drugs, such as warfarin (Coumadin) or aspirin, should be careful when using vitamin B5 supplements, as B5 can increase the risk of bleeding. Women should not take more than 6 mg a day during pregnancy, and 7 mg during breastfeeding, as it may be unsafe.
It is always a good idea to see a doctor before taking the supplement, especially for people with a health condition and those taking other drugs.
What is the recommended daily intake of vitamin B5?
The recommended amount for adults is 5 mg per day. Even larger amounts (up to 10 grams) seem to be safe for some people. But taking larger amounts increases the chance of having side effects such as diarrhea.
Is Too Much Vitamin B5 bad for you?
Vitamin B5 is a water-soluble vitamin, which means that any excess vitamin is excreted in the urine. However, it is not impossible to overdose on vitamin B5. Excess vitamin B5 intake may lead to diarrhea, heartburn, nausea, dehydration, edema, joint pain, calcification in blood vessels, or depression.