Vitamin B5 or pantothenic acid: functions, benefits and sources

The vitamin B5 (also known as pantothenic acid ), we find it practically in all foods, both those that have vegetable and animal origin.

For this reason, vitamin B5 deficiencies do not exist in most cases, since the daily diet tends to easily cover the recommended daily needs. But, what is this vitamin and why is it so important for the proper functioning of our body ?.

Pantothenic acid

What is vitamin B5 or pantothenic acid?

The vitamin B5 , also known as pantothenic acid , is a water soluble vitamin that, as we indicated in the previous lines, we find distributed in a wide range of a wide variety of foods, both vegetables and animals.

In addition, it is not only known with the names that we have indicated previously. Although less known, did you know that it is also called with the names of calcium pantothenate or dexpantenol ? In fact, these are the commercial names of chemical products synthesized in the laboratory from the D isomer of pantothenic acid.

Although we will deal with this issue in a detailed section, the truth is that we can find vitamin B5 in interesting quantities both in vegetables and cereals, as well as vegetables, eggs, meat and also in milk.

Functions of vitamin B5 or pantothenic acid

Involved in the metabolization of food

Pantothenic acid is essential for the correct metabolism of many of the macronutrients that we find in food immediately, as is the case of fats or lipids, carbohydrates and proteins.

Moreover, if there is a lack of vitamin B5, it is common to feel weakness and fatigue, since this vitamin helps transform food into energy.

In addition, it intervenes in the synthesis of fats, in particular cholesterol and phospholipids, which are part of the membrane of nerve cells.

Helps to form hemoglobin

The hemoglobin It consists of a red pigment found in red blood cells (red blood cells), and among other important functions, is responsible for capturing oxygen from the pulmonary alveoli and communicating it to different tissues.

In this sense, pantothenic acid helps the formation of hemoglobin .

Benefits of pantothenic acid

Useful for our defenses

Although equally less known for this quality, pantothenic acid is very useful for our defenses , since it helps our immune system defend itself better against the aggressions that come from outside.

In fact, vitamin B5 deficiency causes a decrease by our immune system to be able to resist more infections.

Ideal for skin and nails

Although less known than other vitamins or minerals, the truth is that Vitamin B5 is useful for the health of the skin and nails , by stimulating and regenerating its growth in a totally natural way.

In fact, its chemical form synthesized in the laboratory is often used in hair products, by helping to delay the appearance of gray hair.

Vitamin B5 is an essential nutrient essential for our body. In particular, it participates in the following basic functions:

  • It helps in the synthesis of hormones.
  • Actively participates in different chemical reactions at the cellular level to obtain energy.
  • Essential for the metabolism of food, especially for the fatty, protein and hydrocarbon metabolism.
  • Collaborates in the synthesis of cholesterol.

Where to find pantothenic acid: foods richer in vitamin B5

Did you know that almost all foods in their nutritional composition have vitamin B5 or pantothenic acid? For this reason it is very difficult to produce any type of lack or deficit.

In fact, we can find pantothenic acid in the following foods, highlighting especially the sources of animal origin :

  • Meat.
  • Eggs
  • Fish.
  • Dairy products.
  • Vegetables: especially peas and lentils.
  • Cereal grains: , especially integrals. Oat flakes and brown rice stand out.
  • Vegetables and vegetables: cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower and peppers.
  • Tubers: like the potato and the sweet potato.
  • Yeast.

We can also find pantothenic acid or vitamin B5 in brewer's yeast, royal jelly, propolis, wheat bran and wheat germ.

Foods rich in pantothenic acid

In addition, we must bear in mind that the habitual consumption of alcoholic beverages impairs the adequate absorption of vitamin B5 by our body. Therefore, its use is not advised, and in case of regular consumption of alcohol, the administration of pantothenic acid supplements is recommended as a way to cover the recommended daily needs of this vitamin.

The same happens in case of hepatitis , which is inflammation of the liver caused by viruses.

Recommended daily amount of vitamin B5 or pantothenic acid

Recommended contributions per day
Babies 0 to 6 months 1.7 mg.
Children from 6 to 12 months 2 mg.
Children from 1 to 3 years old 3 mg.
Children from 4 to 8 years old 3 mg.
Children from 9 to 13 years old 4 mg.
Teen girls 5 mg.
Teenage boys 5 mg.
Adult woman 4-7 mg.
Adult man 4-7 mg.
Pregnant 6 mg.
Nursing woman 7-10 mg.

As we see, the daily needs of vitamin B5 or pantothenic acid range from 2 mg (in infants and children) to 10 mg, depending - of course - on age.

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