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Get acquainted with your nutrients - Pantothenic Acid
Get acquainted with your nutrients – Pantothenic Acid
Pantothenic acid is also known as vitamin B₅. The term pantothenic acid is derived from the Greek word “pantothen” which means “from every side”. The name was given to denote the widespread availability of pantothenic acid in foods. It is a water-soluble vitamin essential to sustain life
What is the function of pantothenic acid in the body?
Pantothenic acid supports a variety of important body functions, such as
- Carbohydrate, protein and fat metabolisms
- Synthesizing coenzyme A and acyl carrier protein
- Production of cholesterol and steroid hormones
- Producing red blood cells
- Producing stress-related hormones
- Storing energy in the form of fat
Pantothenic acid requirement
The adult adequate intake (AI) is 5 mg a day. During pregnancy the recommendation increases to 6 mg and during lactation, it becomes 7 mg .
As pantothenic acid is essential in energy metabolism it becomes very important to people who exercise and athletes to get at least 10 mg of pantothenic acid daily. It is easily obtained from a well-balanced diet, so a deficiency of it is quite rare.
Pantothenic Acid Deficiency
Pantothenic acid is present in almost all foods, the deficiency is rare except in people with severe malnutrition. When someone has a pantothenic acid deficiency, it is usually accompanied by deficiencies in other nutrients, making it difficult to identify the effects that are specific to pantothenic acid deficiency.
Some of the common signs of pantothenic acid deficiency include
- Abdominal pain
- Burning feet
Sources of pantothenic acid
Pantothenic acid is present in many foods. Foods which provide pantothenic acid include egg yolk, animal tissue, whole grain products, legumes, broccoli, milk, sweet potatoes and molasses.
In supplements pantothenic acid is usually found in the form of calcium and sodium pantothenate.
Uses of pantothenic acid:
Pantothenic acid has a long list of uses, even though there isn’t enough scientific evidence to determine whether it is effective for most of these uses. People take pantothenic acid for treating dietary deficiencies, acne, alcoholism, allergies, baldness, asthma, attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism, burning feet syndrome, yeast infections, heart failure, carpal tunnel syndrome, respiratory disorders, celiac disease, colitis, conjunctivitis, convulsions, and cystitis.
Pantothenic acid is also used orally for treating
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Premenstrual syndrome(PMS)
- Enlarged prostate
- Protection against mental and physical stress and anxiety
- Reducing adverse effects of thyroid therapy in congenital hypothyroidism
- Reducing signs of aging
- Reducing susceptibility to colds and other infections
- Skin disorders,
- Stimulating adrenal glands,
- Dizziness, and wound healing.