Vitamin B2: Key for Healthy Body

Vitamins and proteins are the most common nutrients known to each and everyone around. I remember when during my childhood, I got often scolded by my mother for not eating enough green vegetables;
“It contains proteins” as she used to say;

True that, green vegetables are full of essential nutrients but there these vitamins and minerals are umbrella term and involve different types within it.
In this article, we will try to understand one subtype of vitamin called “Vitamin B2”

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So what is Vitamin B2?
It’s a part of vitamin B family and is also termed as “Riboflavin”. The term “flavin” means “Yellow”; so if there is high concentration of Vitamin B2 in your body, your urine gets bright yellow color due to this vitamin

It’s a water-soluble vitamin which gets flushed out of our body daily so it must be restored in our body daily through the diet.

Why is Vitamin B2 important for our body?

1. Vitamin B2 (in fact all Vitamin B Family) helps our body to digest and extract energy from the food we eat. They help convert carbohydrates, fats, and protein into usable energy called “ATP” which get used up by our cells to perform the daily activity.
You can understand that how important Vitamin B2 is for our body and neglecting it can cause serious issues in our daily functioning. With the absence of this Vitamin, you may feel fatigued and your body will not be able to carry out the normal process.

2. They act as antioxidant within the body.
Free-radicals are elements which disturb our body cells and cause damage to the extent of causing cancer. Antioxidants fight these harmful elements and prevent them from causing damage to our cells; hence protecting us from cancer and other ailments.

3. Helps with dealing headaches
Vitamin B2 is a proven method to fight with painful migraine headache. Even the doctors commonly prescribe riboflavin tablets to prevent/fight the migraine attacks.

4. Maintains Eye Health
Deficiency of Vitamin B2 can lead to plethora of problems. Maintaining healthy levels of riboflavin can protect you from eye-disorders like cataracts, glaucoma etc.
When you get older, you get susceptible to eye problems, so it’s better for us to include healthy level of this Vitamin so that we can live complication free life later.

Vitamin B2 for healthy skin and hair

5. Maintain Healthy Hair and Skin
Riboflavin protects your skin and hair; hence it makes you look younger. Instead of buying expensive anti-aging creams, one should work to maintain a healthy diet that not only keeps your body fit but also helps to look younger.

6. Prevent & Treat Anemia
Anemia is a condition which is caused by multiple factors like decrease Red Blood Cell’s (RBC) Production, inability of the RBC to carry oxygen, or Blood loss.
People with Anemia face symptoms like extreme weakness, shortness of breath, rapid heart rate and appear pale.
Vitamin B2 is required for RBC production and synthesis of hormones; hence can help us with great deal to prevent/treat this difficult condition.

7. Other Importance
Deficiency of Vitamin B2 can lead to cracking of lips, sore throat, skin rashes, skin inflammation around nose and face, change in mood (increased anxiety), eye itching and headaches.
(Above are the signs of Vitamin B2 deficiency)

Sources of Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)
As I said earlier, due to its water solubility characteristics, this vitamin has to be replenished on a daily basis. The best way to keep your body sufficient with this Vitamin is to eat food that is rich in riboflavin.
In the below section, I will be mentioning the list of foods that are rich with this essential nutrient and should be incorporated into your diet.

1. Organ Meat like Liver/Kidneys (of lamb, beef, chicken)

2. Cheese (100gms of cheese provides 81% of daily recommended value): If you are living in India, you can buy amul cheese squares/slices, which are available in reasonable prices.
If you trying cheese for the first time, you may not like its taste in the beginning, but once you develop the taste, you will like this snack like anything.

3. Eggs (one hard-boiled egg contains 15% of Vitamin B2)
4. Fish (Mackerel, Katla, Rohu, tuna etc)
5. Green Leafy Vegetables
6. Beans
7. Nuts  (Almonds are the best source)

Almonds rich in Vitamin B2
8. Mushrooms
Mushroom for healthy vitamins
9. Sesame Seeds (“til” in Hindi)
For Indians, this snack is easily available in the form of “Til Laddu” {a form of sweet}. So whenever you come across the street vendors selling this item, make sure to buy it.

Vitamin B2 foods

It has been seen that Vitamin B2 deficiency is not much of a problem in western countries as different products like bread, milk are specially fortified with Vitamin B.
But if you are living in developing nation it gets important for you to eat right foods and in a proper amount.

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