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More about Vitamin B2

Riboflavin functions as the precursor (building block) for two coenzymes that are important in energy production. Flavin mononucleotide (FMN) and flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD) are the two coenzymes that act as hydrogen carriers to help make energy as adenosine triphosphate (ATP) through the metabolism of carbohydrates and fats. Riboflavin is also instrumental in cell respiration, helping each cell utilize oxygen most efficiently; it is helpful in maintaining good vision and healthy hair, skin, and nails; it is necessary for normal cell growth.

Supplemental riboflavin is commonly used to treat and help prevent visual problems, eye fatigue, and cataracts. It seems to help with burning eyes, excess tearing (watery eyes), and decreased vision resulting from eye strain. Riboflavin is also used for many kinds of stress conditions, fatigue, and vitality or growth problems. For people with allergies and chemical sensitivities, riboflavin-5-phosphate may be more readily assimilated than riboflavin.

Riboflavin is given for skin difficulties such as acne, dermatitis, eczema, and skin ulcers. B2 is also used in the treatment of alcohol problems, ulcers, digestive difficulties, and leg cramps, and supplementing it may be advantageous for prevention or during treatment of cancer. There is, however, not much published research to support these common uses.

Like most of the B-vitamins, deficiency is of significant concern. Some authorities claim that vitamin B2 deficiency is the most common nutrient deficiency in America. However, because some is produced by intestinal bacteria, it may not cause symptoms as severe as other vitamin deficiencies. 

Find out more about Vitamin B2

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