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Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)
Also known as riboflavin, vitamin B2 is a water-soluble vitamin.
Since it is not stored in body fat, after the body uses what
it needs, any excess vitamin B2 is excreted in urine or sweat.
we need it?
Vitamin B2 works with the other B vitamins in maintaining
body growth and the production of red blood cells. Like thiamin,
it helps metabolize carbohydrates into energy. Some studies
have shown that vitamin B2 may protect against cataracts,
migraine headaches and sickle cell anemia.
vitamin B2 should I take?
According to the National Academy of Sciences, the recommended
daily allowance (RDA) for riboflavin is as follows:
- Adult men: 1.7 milligrams/day
- Adult women: 1.3 milligrams/day
- Children aged 7-10: 1.2 milligrams/day
- Infants: 0.5 milligrams/day
- Pregnant/lactating women: 1.8 milligrams/day
some good sources of vitamin B2?
Large amounts of riboflavin can be found in lean meats, fortified
cereals and yogurt. Other good sources include milk, cheese,
eggs, broccoli and spinach. Because riboflavin is destroyed
by exposure to light, foods that contain riboflavin should
not be stored in glass containers that are exposed to light.
happen if I don't get enough vitamin B2?
Because riboflavin is so plentiful in the average diet, deficiencies
are quite uncommon. However, people who do not get enough
riboflavin can suffer from dry or cracked skin, especially
around the lips or corners of the mouth. Other symptoms include
skin rashes and eye irritation. Severe deficiencies may lead
to depression or hysteria.
happen if I take too much?
Excess consumption of riboflavin may cause a person's urine
to become bright yellow, but to date, no toxic side-effects
have been reported. Because it is water-soluble and is not
stored in the body, the chances of enough riboflavin building
up to toxic levels are highly unlikely. Most people taking
multivitamins with high levels of riboflavin or eating foods
rich in riboflavin need not worry about toxicity.
Other Resources :
More You Know About Vitamins
More You Know About Nutrition
B vitamins may
cut heart disease risk. Harvard Health News April 1998.
B vitamins and the heart: what men can learn from women.
Harvard Men's Health Watch June 1998.
Recommended Dietary Allowances, 10th ed. Washington,
D.C.: National Academy Press, 1989.
Schoenen J; Jacquy J; Lenaerts M. Effectiveness of
high-dose riboflavin in migraine prophylaxis. A randomized
controlled trial. Neurology Feb 1998;50:466-470.
Ajayi OA, George B, Ipadeola T. Clinical trial of riboflavin
in sickle cell disease. East Afr Med J Jul 1993;70(7):418-21.
Garrison R, Somer E. The Nutrition Desk Reference.
New Canaan, CT: Keats Publishing, 1995.