The Top 5 Energy Boosting Vitamins
By Shona Wilkinson
Many people suffer from tiredness and fatigue and would like a boost to their energy levels. Having a good diet and a high-quality vitamin supplement is a great place to start. Sometimes however, we may need extra vitamins that are especially beneficial for energy production.
1) Vitamin C
This is one of the more talked about vitamins with regards to immune support, however did you know it is needed for energy as well? Vitamin C is needed for normal energy yielding metabolism as it feeds directly into a set of chemical reactions called the energy production cycle. Our needs for vitamin C dramatically increase when we are ill, which may explain why we often get fatigued when we have a common cold or are fighting off an infection. The NRV of vitamin C is 80mg / day.
2) Vitamin B12
As well as helping to produce energy in the energy production cycle, vitamin B12 is needed for the production of normal red blood cells. This is extremely important as red blood cells carry oxygen around the body so that it can be metabolised by your cells and energy can be produced. There is a condition called vitamin B12 deficiency anaemia, which is much like Iron deficiency anaemia, where this process of oxygen transportation is impaired by a lack of vitamin B12. The NRV is 2.5mcg / day.
3) Vitamin B6
As well as being great for normal energy yielding metabolism, vitamin B6 contributes to the regulation of hormonal activity. Often, when woman experience PMT, they experience tiredness and fatigue, both physical and mental. Vitamin B6 is also needed for the formation of normal red blood cells just as with vitamin B12, so is needed for the oxygen transportation side of energy production as well.
Technically classed as one of the B vitamins, as well as being needed for energy yielding metabolism, biotin contributes to normal macronutrient metabolism. Macronutrients are carbohydrates, fats and proteins, and their metabolism is essential for energy. Carbohydrates get broken down into glucose which acts as your body’s main energy source. In the absence of carbohydrates, protein will be converted into glucose in the body, in a process called gluconeogenesis. If carbohydrates and protein are both absent your body will convert fats into ketone bodies, which can be used directly as fuel and energy for your cells.
5) Vitamin B5
Also known as pantothenic acid, vitamin B5 works with the other B vitamins for energy yielding metabolism. As well as this, vitamin B5 contributes towards normal mental performance, something that people often struggle with. Mental performance often declines when we are fatigued, however adding in extra vitamin B5 can help to support both physical energy and mental function.
There are many vitamins and minerals that contribute towards the creation of energy. If poor energy levels persist, it is best to get checked out by your doctor who can help you work out why. You may initially want to start topping up by adding a supplement to your diet to ensure that you are getting enough nutrients to support good energy levels.