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B Vitamins Help Address: Low Energy and Blood Flow

The B vitamins help process carbo­hydrates, lipids, and proteins to generate energy. They include thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), pantothenic acid (B5), pyridoxine (B6), biotin (B7), folate (B9), and cobalamin (B12).

B3, B6, and B12 help with testos­terone production. B1, B2, B3, and B5 help make adenosine triphosphate, which fuels our muscles. And B3 and B12 are notably beneficial for blood circulation, including to the reproductive organs.

“B vitamins support the adrenal glands, which produce our sex hormones, and are essential to every cell in the body,” says naturopathic physician and licensed acupuncturist Laurie Steelsmith, ND, MS, LAc, coauthor of Great Sex, Naturally. ­Integrative and functional nutritionist Cindi Lockhart, RDN, LD, IFNCP adds that B vitamins are quickly ­depleted when we’re under stress.

How to Supplement With B Vitamins:

Food sources of B3, which has been shown to support blood flow and even address erectile dysfunction, include avocados, buckwheat, artichokes, kale, spinach, and many nuts and seeds.

B6, which helps activate hor­mone production, can be found in sweet potatoes, apples, pears, and sesame and sunflower seeds, as well as in barley, spelt, wheat, and other sprouted grains.

For B12, look to animal products: meat, eggs, dairy, and fish. It’s a good idea for vegetarians and vegans to work with a practitioner to ensure they’re getting sufficient vitamin B12.

Oral supplements are available for individual B vitamins as well as for B complex. (For more on B vitamins, see “All About B Vitamins.”)

This was excerpted from “How to Use Nutrition to Improve Your Libido” which was published in Experience Life.

Mo Perry

Mo Perry is an Experience Life contributing editor.

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