What is riboflavin? How much riboflavin do you need? Where to get it?
Riboflavin, know as vitamin B-2, is a type of B vitamin with a key role in maintaining human health. It is a water-soluble (meaning it is flushed out of the body with water) vitamin that is stored in the body and must be replenished daily. Vitamin B-2 exists as a functional constituent of distinct coenzymes which are required by enzyme proteins for body cell functions. Vitamin B-2 participates in numerous pathways of carbohydrate, protein and fat metabolism and in energy production in body cells through the processes of respiration (breathing). Substances such as pyruvic acid, alpha-ketoglutarate and branch-chain amino acids require B-2 to metabolize them to derivatives that play critical roles in generating energy from the diet.
Vitamin B-2 also participates in the metabolism and disposition of chemicals foreign to the body. Vitamin B-2 works with other B vitamins and is important for body growth and red blood cell production. Vitamin B-2 plays an important role in protecting against oxidative stress. Increased oxidative stress is associated with riboflavin deficiency. Vitamin B-2 is essential in maintaining the levels of the cellular protective agent glutathione (GSH).
Dietary sources of vitamin B-2 include milk, eggs, almonds, spinach, asparagus, broccoli and enriched breads and cereals. The Reference Daily Intake (RDI) of vitamin B-2 for adults is 1.7 mg.
More on B vitamins tomorrow.
Blessings for a Glorious Day!