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Vitamin B2 (riboflavin)

Vitamin B2

True riboflavin deficiency causes a disease known as ariboflavinosis, which is very uncommon in first-world nations but is characterized by a variety of mucous membrane (mouth and throat) and skin illnesses, as well as eye difficulties. With the exception of a few populations, suboptimal deficits are very frequent and, for the most part, do not result in any serious health problems.

Adolescent and young adult women, notably in the UK, where riboflavin is not fortified in food to the same extent as in the US and Canada, and the elderly, who have lower than optimum riboflavin intakes, might benefit from riboflavin supplementation.

Overall, riboflavin is a vitamin that people who eat a poor diet may not get enough of, but a healthier diet can help. Supplementation is never required, however it is probably recommended for anemics on iron replacement treatment (where optimizing riboflavin intake would aid the utility of supplemental iron).

How to Take

Riboflavin can be supplemented at a relatively modest dose of 1-2mg daily to support riboflavin reserves in the body for the aim of maintaining an adequate riboflavin status in the body. Higher dosages (4mg) may build storage more quickly, but they may function similarly well in the long run, and these are the doses that should be used to lower homocysteine levels.

While the optimal dose for reducing migraines has yet to be determined, many studies recommend a total daily dose of 400mg riboflavin divided into several doses throughout the day; riboflavin at these doses (50mg or more) should be taken with food, a dosing modification that does not apply to lower dose supplementation, which can be taken on an empty stomach.

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