We all know how important vitamins and minerals are for the body in order to function in the right way. But, many studies indicate that there is a strong link between B-vitamins and sports performance that is usually something that characterizes high-level athletes. One of the main functions of B-vitamins is to convert our proteins and carbohydrates into energy. They also give a big contribution on the cell repairing process and production as well.
Usually, women athletes are the ones that might be more prone to vitamin B deficiency. This is only based on the fact women tend to spend much more calories than man during a sport performance.
What do studies show?
Well, today is a known fact that B-vitamins are essential especially for athletes. There is no doubt about their importance and power into our body. According to a research made by Oregon State University, published on the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercises Metabolism, found that all athletes who lack B-vitamins have also a reduced performance in a high-intensity mode. Also, these athletes are less able to repair their damaged muscles or even build muscle mass when compared with the ones that had optimal levels of B-vitamins into their system.
Many other studies have found that even a small deficiency can potentially transform the results on athlete’s performances. Also, the amount of B-vitamins may vary and the need it’s not the same for every athlete. It is important to check your vitamin Bs levels and know what to eat in order to supply your body with these essential vitamins.
There are many athletes who prefer using B-vitamins supplement. We recommend, before you start using them, try to first understand the quality and purity of the supplements and then, try to consult with a nutritionist in order to learn all about B-vitamins.
Where to get B-vitamins?
B-vitamins include thiamin, vitamin B-6, B-12, riboflavin, and folate. All these micronutrients are essential for our body to properly convert protein and carbs into energy. Also, they are extremely important for our nervous system and the cell repairing process (including our red blood cells).
Since these vitamins are essential especially for active people due to the fact, a deficiency may impact their body’s ability to repair itself and efficiently function and operate, most importantly the ability for the body to fight diseases, it is important to know which the best and healthiest sources to take B-vitamins are.
In general, you can find great source of B-vitamins in whole grains, dark green vegetables and nuts. Also, in any kind of animal products (meat, diary). Vitamin B-6 is the one with the biggest effect on our body. That is why, it must be always in our focus when choosing and organizing our daily food intake. You can find B-6 in beans, fish, chicken, dark leafy greens, papayas, bananas and orange.
After B-6, the one that follows its importance is the B-12. You can find this vitamin especially in dairy products, meat and fish. Also, great sources of B-12 are fortified cereals, enriched soy and rice milk.
Folate is mostly found in fruits and veggies. Also, a considerable amount of folates may be found in whole grains, beans and cereals.