We live in a world where uncertainty is perhaps the only certain thing. Whether you are having money worries, problems with relationships, issues at work, or any other pressures of life, it is not uncommon to deal with stress regularly.
The good news is that there are so many ways to relieve stress, including prescription medication. But we are not going to focus on those here. This post looks at Vitamin B as a potential stress reliever and there is pretty good evidence out there that seems to support this.
What is Vitamin B?
You think you know Vitamin B right? Well, maybe you do but the funny thing is, although most people believe they know what these vitamins are, they probably have a very rudimentary understanding. So, before we go to the nitty-gritty of how vitamin B can potentially help reduce stress, we thought it would be nice to just give you a general explanation of what it is.
Vitamin B is a class of water-soluble vitamins critical for proper cell function. There are a total of 8 vitamins under the B class, all with a very specific physiological role. Sadly, our bodies do not store Vitamin B for long. This means that you will have to keep replenishing it through a normal diet.
Vitamin B and Stress Relief
Now that we are all clear on what B vitamins are all about, it is time to look at how they can potentially help with stress relief. The role of B complex vitamins in reducing stress is based on the effects these vitamins have on homocysteine, a type of amino acid in our bodies that has been linked to high levels of stress and other health-related issues.
There is evidence suggesting that if administered in higher doses, vitamin B complex can lower the levels of homocysteine in the blood, something which will in turn help to alleviate stress. Some studies, like this one, have shown that people who take B complex vitamins regularly report lower levels of work-related stress compared to those who don’t. We have also seen studies that show the increased intake of B complex vitamins may also help to enhance mood
Vitamin B is also an essential nutrient in overall metabolism. These vitamins are known to enhance food digestion and converting all those calories you are taking into energy. Consequently, people with enough supply of B complex vitamins tend to have higher energy levels, something that may encourage you to engage in other important stress relief activities, including exercise and recreation.
Healthy Sources of Vitamin B
As we have noted above, our bodies do not store these vital vitamins for long. This means that you will need to eat foods rich in B complex vitamins regularly. Well, whole grains are highly recommended. Things like barley, millet, and brown rice are rich in B vitamins.
You may also consider various types of meats including poultry, Red meat, and fish. Legumes like beans and lentils are also ideal. Try and also include dairy products like milk and cheese into your diet and fruits like avocados, bananas, and citrus. Dark leafy vegetables too including spinach, broccoli, and Kai-Lan may also offer loads of B complex vitamins.
The recommended daily intake for Vitamin B varies across gender. Additionally, there are 8 different vitamins under the B class, and each of them has its own recommended daily intake. However, if you can enrich your diet with the foods we have listed above it should be possible to hit your required daily target. Nonetheless, you can still use supplementation. There are several B complex vitamin supplements in the market today that are more convenient and bioavailable.
There are so many things you can do to reduce stress and enhance mood. However, it seems like there is some research suggesting B complex vitamins can play a huge role in this. Besides, regular Vitamin B intake has so many other psychological benefits. In essence, you have nothing to lose here.