Why do we need B vitamins?
One of the primary ways we use B vitamins is shown below. This pathway/cycle is known as the Krebs cycle or citric acid cycle. Many health students memorize this pathway in classes as it is the primary way our cells make energy. While many people know of this cycle and have even taken tests on it most do not know the influence B vitamins have on proper function of the cycle. In the diagram below you see the energy pathway; note most of the boxes contain multiple forms of B vitamins as they are required for energy production. Also interesting the minerals required for energy production in the diagram: magnesium, iron, copper, zinc.... Most American's are low in several minerals and often low in B vitamins. Why?
not eating the right kinds of foods?
not eating enough of the right kinds of foods?
not digesting foods properly?
not absorbing foods properly?
For most people it is some combination of the above reasons. Many people take acid blockers (PPI's) which can impair digestion and absorption of all vitamins and minerals over time, but especially limit absorption of B vitamins as stomach acid is critical in breaking them free from foods. In our clinic we run nutrient labs to assess vitamin/mineral status. If interested in testing see the "future of lab testing" under my research/articles tab. The lab industry is quickly transitioning away from required doctors orders and inflated pricing for insurance coverage. Soon the average person will be able to check these essential nutrient levels themselves....allowing us to take control of our own health.
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