7 Health Benefits of Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)

Vitamins can be taken as supplements (Image via Pexels/Polina Tankilevitch)
Vitamins can be taken as supplements (Image via Pexels/Polina Tankilevitch)

B-complex vitamins are essential for everyone. But how well do we know the benefits of each class of B vitamins?

Contrary to popular belief, each class of B-vitamins comes with its own range of benefits for the body. For example, most hair and nail gummies you come across these days are comprised of vitamin B6 or B7 derivatives.

Riboflavin, or vitamin B2, is a common vitamin that is found naturally in most foods, such as eggs, nuts, milk, meat, and green vegetables.

Although it can be consumed easily in everyday foods, it is a water-soluble vitamin. It can be lost easily when one cooks or boils these foods, so supplementation is a good option.

Riboflavin is important for many essential processes in the body, as well as the absorption of other nutrients.

Aside from that, this vitamin also comes with an array of other benefits for the body.

Health benefits of taking Vitamin B2

Let’s look at the top seven benefits of taking B2 as a supplement:

1) Produces energy

Riboflavin plays a vital role in converting carbohydrates within the body into adenosine triphosphate, or ATP, which is the body’s primary source of energy.

2) Facilitates metabolism of nutrients

Riboflavin breaks down carbs, protein, and fats, facilitating their absorption into the body. Without this, our bodies will not be able to produce sufficient energy or develop muscles.

3) Converts other vitamins to their chemical forms

Without riboflavin, vitamin B3 cannot be converted into niacin, which facilitates a number of processes in the body.

Vitamin B6 is also stunted, preventing the breakdown of glycogen reserves.

4) Treats migraine headaches

Riboflavin is said to improve respiration and energy production within mitochondria found in brain cells. This reverses the imbalances in brain chemicals that are believed to be the cause of migraines.

5) Might prevent the growth of cancer cells

Riboflavin provides numerous health benefits (Image via Pexels/Nataliya Vaitkevich)
Riboflavin provides numerous health benefits (Image via Pexels/Nataliya Vaitkevich)

This vitamin is in no way a cure for cancer. However, it is believed to protect tissue cells from being damaged by cancer-causing agents, especially in sensitive areas like the esophagus and cervix.

6) Helps prevent cataracts

Cataracts are a common problem in older adults. This occurs when the cornea of the eye becomes cloudy, thus impairing vision. Supplementing with vitamin B2 regularly can help prevent this.

7) Regulates homocysteine levels

Homocysteine is an amino acid that is found in the blood. However, high levels of this acid have been linked to issues such as heart attacks, strokes, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and dementia.

Supplementation with riboflavin has been shown to reduce the levels of homocysteine in the blood by a significant amount.

Now that you know the benefits of vitamin B2 for the body, it might not be such a bad idea to look to supplements.

Obviously, natural sources are preferred, and an overdose may lead to adverse effects. However, overdosing on riboflavin is rare, and the benefit of water-soluble vitamins is that any excess generally gets excreted through urine.

An excess of B-complex vitamins in the body is usually indicated by a bright yellow tint in urine, but it’s really nothing to worry about.

So, take your supplements regularly, take care of your diet, and hydrate yourself!

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Edited by Rachel Syiemlieh