This store requires javascript to be enabled for some features to work correctly.

Free shipping on contiguous U.S. orders over $150

illustration of DNA

What Do B Vitamins Do?

The family of B vitamins support your brain, metabolism, skin, and so much more. Find out what B vitamins do for your body.

The B vitamins — B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B9, and B12 — do many jobs that keep your body running. Learn what B vitamins do individually.

What do each of the B vitamins do?

Vitamin B1

Also known as: Thiamine

What it does: Helps convert carbohydrates and fat into energy; essential for normal growth and development.

Where to find it: Green peas, beef, liver, pinto beans, spinach, nuts, bananas, and enriched cereals.

Vitamin B2

Also known as: Riboflavin

What it does: Required for the metabolism of fats, carbs, and proteins.

Where to find it: Asparagus, okra, cottage cheese, milk, yogurt, eggs, and fish.

Vitamin B3

Also known as: Niacin

What it does: Used for energy metabolism in cells and DNA repair. Produces several stress-related hormones while removing toxins and chemicals from the body.

Where to find it: Chicken, tuna, milk, eggs, broccoli, tomatoes, carrots, asparagus, nuts, avocados, beans, mushrooms.

Vitamin B5

Also known as: Pantothenic Acid

What it does: Required to sustain life and is critical in the metabolism of fats, carbs, and proteins.

Where to find it: Beans, eggs, meat, whole grain cereals.

Vitamin B6

Also known as: Pyridoxine/Pyridoxamine

What it does: Helps the nervous and immune systems function properly; necessary for overall good health.

Where to find it: Green beans, salad greens, wheat germ, and bananas.

Vitamin B7

Also known as: Biotin/Vitamin H

What it does: Used in cell growth; the production of fatty acid; metabolism of fat; plays a role in the Krebs Cycle in which energy is released from food; helps with the transfer of carbon dioxide; helps maintain a steady blood sugar level.

Where to find it: Beans, cauliflower, chocolate, eggs, fish, liver, oatmeal, bananas.

Vitamin B9

Also known as: Folic Acid/Folate

What it does: Helps the body make healthy new cells; taken before and during pregnancy can help prevent major birth defects of the baby's brain and spine.

Where to find it: Leafy greens such as spinach, dried beans and peas, sunflower seeds, oranges, asparagus.

Vitamin B12

Also known as: Cobalamin

What it does: Necessary for the synthesis of red blood cells, the maintenance of the nervous system, and the growth and development of children.

Where to find it: Meat, eggs, dairy products, nutritional yeast, and fortified cereals.

Many conditions, lifestyle factors, and medications can lead to low levels of some or all the B vitamins. Sometimes, to get the most out of what B vitamins do, taking a B Complex supplement that includes all eight vitamins can help reach normal levels. 

Tags: B Complex