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B Vitamins Linked to Improved Mental Health

What you eat is important not only for your physical health but also for your mental and emotional health. A recent study suggests that vitamin B supplements may be associated with improvements in mental health, reductions in subjective stress, and increased vigor and overall mood.

This study was the first to use Steady State Topography, a brand new technology, as well as functional MRI, in order to detect blood flow changes in the brain. Both of these methods showed increased blood flow activation in the parietal-frontal brain regions after vitamin B supplementation. These areas of the brain are associated with attention and working memory.

The researchers stated that this increase in blood flow is evidence that vitamin B supplementation can influence mental performance and mood.

Researchers from Melbourne’s Swinburne University conducted the study. It was presented at Vitafoods in Hong Kong the week of September 1, 2016.

B vitamins have been linked to numerous health benefits, including improving breast health, nervous system function, red blood cell formation, and hormone function. Studies have also suggested that B vitamins may reduce the risk of hearing loss, and birth defects

Our bodies do not naturally synthesize B vitamins. However, it is easy to increase your intake by eating more folate- rich foods. Some foods rich in folate include liver, eggs, beans, sunflower seeds, asparagus, leafy green vegetables, oranges, strawberries, cantaloupes, and other melons. B  vitamin intake also can be bolstered through supplements or fortified foods.

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