Posted on: 20.09.2021 Posted by: Drlark Comments: 0

October 8, 2003



Vitamins to Supplement

B vitamins

Vitamin D

Vitamin K

B vitamins

The vitamin-B complex is a group of 11 separate nutrients: thiamine,

riboflavin, niacin (B3), pantothenic

acid (B5), pyridoxine (B6), folic

acid, biotin, paba-aminobenzoic acid (PABA), B12,

choline, and inositol.

Because they work together in many chemical reactions, you should

take them together as a B complex vitamin, even if you take additional

B vitamins individually.

Overall, they help with stress, mood and energy. They’re particularly

important when you’re emotionally stressed and your body loses valuable

B vitamins. That’s why they’re so helpful if you suffer from PMS.

Recommended daily intake:

Between 25 and 100 mg per day, taken as a single or divided dosage

Good to know: Take

B vitamins during the day, rather than at night, as they can be

too stimulating. These three B vitamins

are important players in preventing heart disease. They apparently

work by lowering levels of homocysteine, an amino acid in the blood

that studies suggest may be related to increased risk of heart disease,

stroke and peripheral vascular disease. In fact, nearly 40 percent

of those with heart disease have abnormal levels of homocysteine.

These three vitamins destroy homocysteine chemically, rendering

it harmless.

Vitamin B6 also helps

block clotting, lower blood pressure and improve blood cholesterol

levels. It can also regulate many PMS symptoms, including mood swings,

irritability, fluid retention, breast tenderness, bloating, sugar

craving and fatigue. In women who are prone to fatigue caused by

bacteria, viruses, candida or allergies, B6 strengthens your immune


Folic acid also helps

prevent cervical dysplasia, a condition that can be a precursor

to cancer of the cervix, and plays an important role in the production

of red blood cells.

Helps with: Heart

health, bone health,

fatigue, normal cholesterol levels,

managing stress, brain and central nervous system function, preventing

breast cancer and cervical cancer, PMS

symptoms, heavy bleeding and anemia.

Recommended daily intake:

Vitamin B6: 50 to 100 mg

Vitamin B12: If you have bone loss, eat little or no animal products,

or have heavy menstrual bleeding, take 100-500 mcg. Take 1,000 mcg

per day if you suffer from fatigue or low thyroid function

Folic acid: 800 mcg

Best food sources:

Brewer’s yeast, cereal grains, animal liver, oysters, salmon, whole

grains and green leafy vegetables

Good to know: Antibiotics

such as sulfa drugs and tetracycline can interfere with the production

of many B vitamins. Also, women on birth control pills and menopausal

women on estrogen replacement therapy are at risk of B6 deficiency.

Choline, Lecithin

and Inositol

Choline and inositol together make lecithin,

an important component in cell membranes, particularly liver cells.

These vitamins enable your body to move fats in and out of cells,

and helps your liver break down estrogen. Inositol is also a central

nervous system tranquilizer, which is why it’s often recommended

to calm premenstrual anxiety and irritability. Lecithin helps prevent

atherosclerosis, a form of heart disease.

Helps with: Heart

health, normal brain functioning, memory, liver function, PMS.

Recommended daily intake: Lecithin: 2 tbsp.

stirred into 4 oz. of water. Choline and inositol: 50 to 500 mg


Best food sources: egg yolks, brewer’s yeast,

wheat germ, fish, peanuts, leafy green vegetables, and animal liver.

Good to know: Choline is a very sensitive

compound, easily destroyed by estrogen, alcohol, sulfa drugs (antibiotics),

and cooking. Your body stores large amounts of inositol, found in

whole grains, citrus and unrefined molasses. Drinking coffee depletes

these stores.


Niacin dilates blood vessels, improves circulation to the arms

and legs, and reduces blood pressure. It also lowers total blood

cholesterol (a significant risk factor for heart attacks) and improves

your overall cholesterol profile by also increasing “good” HDL cholesterol.

Helps with: Heart

health, restful sleep. May have a mild tranquilizing effect.

Best form to use: Use niacinamide to avoid

the “niacin flush” women often feel when the vitamin dilates the

blood vessels, causing a sensation of warmth, itching, and making

your skin red.

Recommended daily intake: 25 to 100 mg in

single or divided dosages.

Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5)

Helps with: Stress, PMS,


Best food sources: egg yolks, brewer’s yeast,

organ meats and whole grain cereals.

Recommended daily intake: 50 to 100 mg as

part of a vitamin B complex for prevention and good general health.

For stress, PMS, and fatigue, take 250 to 500 mg once or twice a



Critical for: Anxiety and stress, PMS

Recommended daily intake: 25 to 100 mg in

single or divided dosages.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is both a vitamin and a hormone. It’s

a vitamin because without it, we can’t absorb calcium. And it’s a

hormone because we manufacture it when our skin is exposed to sunlight.

Its most important role, however, is maintaining calcium blood levels

by increasing the amount of calcium we absorb from food, and reducing

the amount we lose each day. These days, because of sunscreens and

well-founded warnings to avoid sun exposure, we may have problems

getting enough vitamin D without supplementation.

Helps with: Bone

health, immunity, fatigue.

Recommended daily intake: 400 IU. If you

have osteoporosis, take 800 IU, regardless of diet or sun exposure.

Best source: Sunlight

Good to know: Vitamin D deficiencies are

particularly prevalent in strict vegetarians (vegans) who don’t

eat vitamin D-fortified dairy foods, the elderly, dark-skinned people,

alcoholics, those with liver or kidney disease, and those who live

in northern latitudes.

Vitamin K

This is a relatively obscure but important

vitamin. It’s fat-soluble, meaning it’s stored in our body, and is

produced by bacteria in the intestines as well as found in green leafy


Critical for: Proper blood clotting, bone


Recommended daily intake: No more than 150

mcg a day

Best source: Green leafy vegetables, alfalfa

Caution: Vitamin K interferes with

the blood thinner Coumadin (warfarin). If you take this drug, don’t

take supplemental vitamin K.

To learn more about other nutrients, read on:

Essential Fatty Acids


Antioxidants and free radicals



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