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Stress Busting B Vitamins!

You may already know that the vitamin B complex is great for energy. But did you know it is also a stress buster? A recent study of 60 people over a three month period, double-blind, randomized and placebo controlled, showed that those who took a vitamin B complex supplement showed a reduction in confusion, workplace stress, and personal strain, and also showed a lowering of depressed mood. Although this particular study concerned workplace stress, several other previous studies showed the same effect for non-workplace related stress.

A deficiency in B vitamins can cause psychiatric disorders like dementia, psychosis, anxiety and depression. Some B vitamins can actually increase the effectiveness of traditional antidepressants.

Obviously, then, keeping up your body’s levels of vitamin B complex is a good idea, and this can be done by eating the foods that contain these vitamins. There is no one particular food that contains all the B vitamins, but it is easy to find them in many foods.

Let’s look at what makes up B Complex. B Complex is made up of the 8 B vitamins: B1 (Thiamine), B2 (Riboflavin), B3 (Niacin), B5 (Pantothenic acid), B6 (Pyrodoxine), B7 (Biotin), B9 (Folate), and B12 (Cobalamin).

Below is a list of the 8 B vitamins, some of their additional benefits, and some of the foods that contain them.

B1- Thiamine. This B vitamin helps make new cells, protects the immune system and helps break down simple carbohydrates. It is found in the following foods:

  • wheat germ
  • peanuts
  • beans
  • spinach
  • kale
  • blackstrap molasses

B2 – Riboflavin. B2 is an antioxidant that fights free radicals. It also helps in red blood cell production and may help with migraines. It is found in:

  • almonds
  • wild rice
  • milk
  • yogurt
  • eggs
  • Brussels sprouts
  • spinach
  • soybeans

B3 – Niacin. B3 boosts HDL cholesterol, which is the good cholesterol. You can get this B vitamin from:

  • yeast
  • red meat
  • eggs
  • beans
  • chicken
  • tuna
  • split peas

B5 – Pantothenic acid.   B5 breaks down fats and carbohydrates, produces sex- and stress-related hormones, and gives you healthy skin.   It’s found in most foods in small amounts, but is most prevalent in:

  • avocados
  • yogurt
  • eggs
  • meat
  • beans

B6 – Pyrodoxine. This vitamin helps regulate levels of homocysteine, an amino acid linked to heart disease. It’s also essential for good sleep as it helps produce serotonin, melatonin and norepinephrine. It possibly also helps reduce inflammation in sufferers of rheumatoid arthritis.   It is readily available in:

  • chicken
  • turkey
  • tuna
  • salmon
  • lentils
  • sunflower seeds
  • cheese
  • brown rice
  • carrots

B7 – Biotin. Biotin promotes healthy hair, skin and nails, and helps regulate glucose levels. It is essential for pregnant women as it helps with fetal growth.   It is found in:

  • barley
  • liver
  • yeast
  • pork
  • chicken
  • fish
  • potatoes
  • cauliflower
  • egg yolks
  • nuts

B9 – Folate. This necessary vitamin helps with depression and memory loss. It’s also used in pregnancy for fetal growth and helps prevent neurological birth defects. You can get this vitamin from:

  • dark leafy greens
  • asparagus
  • beets
  • salmon
  • root vegetables
  • milk
  • bulgur wheat
  • beans

B12 – Cobalamin. B12 is a helper. It helps B9 produce red blood cells, and it helps iron produce hemoglobin (Hemoglobin is a protein responsible for transporting oxygen in the blood). It is only found in animal products:

  • fish
  • shellfish
  • dairy
  • eggs
  • beef
  • pork

In order to get enough B12 if you are a vegan, you can take supplements – one tablet equaling 10 micrograms a day or one tablet equaling 2000 micrograms per week. You can also eat fortified foods to equal 3 micrograms per day.

Recommended Daily Value – DV.

The DV is the amount of vitamins and minerals considered necessary for a healthy person each day. Below are the RDAs for the B complex vitamins.

B1 – 1.4 mg

B2 – 1.7 mg

B3 – 20mg

B5 – 10mg

B6 – 2mg

B12 – 6 micrograms

Biotin (B7) – 30 micrograms

Folic Acid (B9) – 400 micrograms

You don’t have to worry about getting too much of the B vitamins because they are water soluble. Any excess is excreted through the urine.

Here is a great vegetarian salad recipe that contains all the B vitamins and a bonus anti-depressant turmeric dressing!

Green Power Salad with Roasted Veggies



Prep time

15 mins

Cook time

20 mins

Total time

35 mins


This Power Salad with Roasted Veggies is loaded with all my favorites, sweet potatoes, brussels sprouts, garbanzo beans and pecans topped with feta cheese – hearty and satisfying!

Author: Kaylee Pauley

Recipe type: Salad

Serves: 2


  • 2 small-medium sweet potatoes, cubed
  • coconut oil cooking spray
  • tsp turmeric
  • tsp smoked paprika
  • tsp black pepper
  • tsp chili powder
  • ⅛ tsp pinch cayenne
  • 8 brussels sprouts, chopped
  • salt and pepper, as desired
  • 4-6 cups spinach
  • 2 free range organic eggs, boiled then sliced
  • 1 avocado, cubed
  • ¼-1/2 cup raw pecans
  • 1 oz feta cheese, crumbled
  • ¼ cup garbanzo beans
  • Homemade Balsamic Almond Turmeric Dressing



  1. Preheat Oven to 400 degrees and prep two pans by spraying each with coconut oil cooking spray.
  2. Combine spices and add cubed sweet potatoes to one pan, spread potatoes out in single layer and spray them with additional coconut oil cooking spray then sprinkle half of spices over potatoes and bake for 10 minutes.
  3. Remove from oven, flip sweet potatoes, coat with additional layer of coconut cooking spray, then top with remaining spices and bake another 10 minutes or until soft and cooked.
  4. Meanwhile, add chopped brussels sprouts to second prepared pan, spray with coconut oil cooking spray, season with salt and pepper, toss to coat, then roast in oven for 7 minutes, remove and flip/stir and bake another 7-8 minutes or until edges begin to crisp and brown.
  5. While veggies cook, assemble two bowls with baby spinach and add eggs, garbanzo beans, pecans and feta cheese.
  6. Once veggies are cooked and have cooled, add them to salad and top with Balsamic Almond and Turmeric Dressing or other desired dressing.


Nutrition info includes ½ of recipe + 2 tbsp, or one serving, of Balsamic Almond and Turmeric Dressing.

Nutrition Information

Serving size: 1 Calories: 529 Fat: 28 Saturated fat: 4 Unsaturated fat: 8 Trans fat: 0 Carbohydrates: 51 Sugar: 18 Sodium: 660 Fiber: 14 Protein: 20 Cholesterol: 218


One Response to “Stress Busting B Vitamins!”

  1. Hi there! I was wondering if I could republish this article and recipe and give you credit? Please email me for more detail!

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