Okay, so let’s talk about B vitamins. B vitamins are essential for our nervous system function. If someone is coming to me with any kind of nervous system disorder, and that can be anything from an autonomic nervous system issue like POTS or dyautonomia, chronic pain, neuropathy, or psychiatric issues, we really need to look at B vitamins, because their primary role is the functioning of the nervous system. For a lot of people who have these conditions we really have to rebuild the nervous system, rebuild the nerves by repairing damage there. We need a lot of B vitamins for that work.

A lot of my clients, when I start talking to them about B vitamins will say, “oh well I take a B complex or a multivitamin that has B vitamins in it”, or “I eat a lot of red meat.” First of all, supplements, especially if it’s a complex or a multivitamin, often have very low amounts of these nutrients. They may be amounts that are in accordance with the RDA. You have to remember that the RDA was designed in terms of the amounts you need of these nutrients to not die. It doesn’t really have a lot to do with how much of these nutrients you need to heal, or to thrive or to feel really good. So we seem to have a lot of stubborn conditions resolved when we provide very high doses of particular nutrients, way above the RDA.

What depletes B vitamins in the first place? Heavy metal toxicity and chronic infections are two of the main things, which many people with chronic illnesses have dealt with. B vitamins get used up when the body is dealing with that. If you’re not getting it optimally replaced in your diet, you’re going to start getting in depletion.

Ideally, we do want to get to B vitamins from foods. I am always a nutrition first practitioner. Diet is the foundation of all the work I do with people. We actually also produce a lot of our B vitamins from our gut bacteria. We do get a lot of B vitamins from the food we eat, but our bacteria eating food makes a lot of the B vitamins for us. Making sure you have a healthy gut is a big part of the process.

Animal protein is going to be the best food source of B vitamins. This can be organ meats, salmon, chicken, beef, lamb. There are some B vitamins in certain legumes or grains especially in their whole form, but you have to eat so much of those grains or those beans to get the same amount that you would get in like a small serving of animal foods. It makes sense to focus more on the animal foods

B1 Thiamine

This one is really important for vagal tone, and that means the function of your vagus nerve and your vagus nerve controls your autonomic nervous system. And so if you have low vagal tone, you get dysautonomia, Pots, severe fatigue, muscle weakness, brain fog and these kinds of things that indicate that the autonomic nervous system is not working so well. Gastroparesis or constipation that is very much in the nervous system is another indication

B3 Niacin

Niacin is often depleted by heavy alcohol use and B3 supplementation actually used to be a part of the AA program. Supplementing this nutrient can help people’s cravings reduce and so this is a really important one if you are recovering from from alcoholism or if you have addictive tendencies. B3 is also very important for chronic fatigue. Niacin can jumpstart the mitochondria back into action.

B6 pyridoxine hcl

This is really helpful for neuropathy that doesn’t have an obvious cause because it really helps repair the nerves. This can be pain or just a tingling, buzzing sensation. This is also really important for stubborn mental illness. There is a condition called pyroluria where some people tend to waste B6 and some people really benefit from this. This nutrient is required to make the conversion from nutrients into neurotransmitters and hormones.

B 12 cobalamin.

B 12 is one of the most uplifting of the B vitamins. People who have stubborn energy issues benefit from B12. This can be fatigue, or a feeling like you’re under a dark cloud all the time, a gloomy disposition and even going so far as to this this visceral sense of impending doom. Low B12 can be a cause.

About the Author
Jen Donovan completely rebuilt her life and career as a result of her experience with severe chronic illness. After finding no answers from conventional medical approaches, she took matters into her own hands and with the help of key mentors, found a path to healing.
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