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6 Signs of Riboflavin Deficiency: Why You Need Vitamin B12 and How to Add it to Your Diet

By Brooke McLay |

Do you have a Riboflavin deficiency?  With a diet high in refined carbohydrates and low in whole food proteins, fresh fruits, and vegetables, many Americans are discovering a lack of needed nutrients in their diets.  Of recent note is the need for Vitamin B12, also known as Riboflavin, as part of a well-balanced diet.  According to ihealthDirectory,

It is essential for keeping healthy hair, skin, and nails. Lack of this vitamin can cause eye disorders, inflammation of the tongue and mouth, skin lesions and cracks and sores on the corners of the mouth. Vitamin B2 plays a vital role in negating the effects of carcinogens in the body so it can help to fight off cancer. It is also helpful for mental health and well being. When there is enough riboflavin in the body you are able to concentrate better. It also helps to elevate the mood and has many psychological benefits.

If you’re concerned about a potential Riboflavin deficiency, here are the 6 main signs and symptoms to look out for. 

  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Sore tongue and lips
  • Infection in the mouth and throat
  • Extreme and unusual sensitivity to light
  • Irritability in the eyes
  • Chapped lips

Vitamin B2 deficiency may occur when either the person’s daily consumption of the vitamin is low or their body is not absorbing enough vitamins.  Of course, only a medical doctor can diagnose a true Vitamin B12 deficiency, so be sure to set an appointment with your doctor to discuss your concerns. You can also increase your intake of these riboflavin rich foods.

The very best riboflavin food sources are:

  • brewer’s yeast
  • almonds
  • organ meats
  • whole grains
  • wheat germ
  • wild rice
  • mushrooms
  • soybeans
  • milk
  • yogurt
  • eggs
  • broccoli
  • brussel sprouts
  • spinach
  • oily fish, such as mackerel, trout, eel, herring, and shad
  • dried peas, beans, and some seeds such as sunflower
  • nori seaweed

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About Brooke McLay


Brooke McLay

Brooke McLay is a recipe developer, food writer, food photographer, and cooking show host for Babble, General Mills, and Good Cook. You can find and follow her latest whims at Cheeky Kitchen. Read bio and latest posts → Read Brooke's latest posts →

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3 thoughts on “6 Signs of Riboflavin Deficiency: Why You Need Vitamin B12 and How to Add it to Your Diet

  1. [...] deficient in riboflavin? Are your nails brittle? Are you having trouble sleeping? Check out these signs of riboflavin deficiency to see if you might need more in your diet. If you do or if you don’t, more riboflavin is [...]

  2. AQ says:

    As an added bonus, most of these foods will add “umami” to your dishes, too.

  3. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by guptashekhu, Foodierama. Foodierama said: 6 Signs of Riboflavin Deficiency: Why You Need Vitamin B12 and How to Add it to Your Diet #foodie [...]

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