Vitamin B5 is essential for the metabolism of various energy nutrients: carbohydrates (sugars), lipids (fats), amino acids (constituents of proteins).
This vitamin is one of the water-soluble (water-soluble) vitamins. It owes its name to being universally spread (in Greek, “pantothen” means “everywhere”). It can, however, only be produced by plants or micro-organisms.
Roles of vitamin B5 in the body
This vitamin is involved in the metabolism (storage, mobilization …) of carbohydrates (sugars), lipids (fats) and amino acids (constituents of proteins).
It participates in the synthesis of certain hormones: cortisol, aldosterone, adrenaline …
It is essential for the growth of the tissues and thus contributes to the process of skin healing and to the growth of the hair.
It is useful for good intellectual functioning.
Almost all foods contain this vitamin, but offal, eggs, poultry, meat and some cheeses are particularly rich.
Many breakfast cereals are enriched with B vitamins, including B5. Beer yeast and wheat germ can supplement the intake.
Risks of under-dosing and over-dosing of vitamin B5
RISKS IN CASE OF VITAMIN B5 DEFICIENCY
Since , this vitamin is present in most foods, pure deficiency states are rare.
It seems that during the Second World War prisoners in Japan and the Philippines suffered from vitamin B5 deficiency, resulting in “burned feet syndrome”, their symptoms regressing after administration of pantothenic acid.
Experimentally, vitamin B5 deficiency results in muscle weakness, fatigue, pain and burning of the extremities, gastrointestinal pain.
RISK OF EXCESS IN VITAMIN B5
The scientific literature does not report any side effects related to vitamin B5 intakes far superior to the recommended nutritional intakes. There is therefore no safe dose limit.
It is very sensitive to heat: to preserve it at best, it is important to cook the food just enough time and to avoid reheating it several times. Since it is water-soluble, it escapes into the cooking waters, hence the advantage of steam cooking.