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Pantothenic Acid: What You Should Know

Sources, Benefits, Forms, Dosage

What is Pantothenic Acid?

Pantothenic acid, or pantothenate, is one of the thirteen essential vitamins, and also one of the eight B vitamins, Vitamin B5. Essential vitamins need to be present in the diet because the human body cannot make the nutrients on its own, or in sufficient amounts to sustain normal and healthy bodily functions.1 Pantothenic acid is considered an essential vitamin due to its many physiological health benefits, and along with being essential it is also water-soluble. Water-soluble vitamins like Vitamin C and the eight B vitamins dissolve in water and are not stored in the liver or fatty-tissue like with fat-soluble vitamins.1 Since water-soluble vitamins are easily flushed out of the body it is uncommon to develop toxic side effects.

Benefits of Pantothenic Acid – There are many

The name pantothenic acid is derived from the Greek word “pantos”, which translates to “everywhere” as this essential nutrient is found in almost all plant and animal tissue.1

Pantothenic acid is involved in the creation of coenzyme A, which is an enzyme involved in many important bodily reactions, most notably metabolic reactions like glycolysis and citric acid cycle.1,2 Coenzyme A is needed to metabolize energy such as glucose, fatty acids, and amino acids from dietary sources.1 Pantothenic acid is needed for appropriate and proper metabolism of food.

As pantothenic acid is a B vitamin, it is also known for having healthful benefits for skin and hair such as having moisturizing effects.2 Research also shows that pantothenic acid may even help promote wound healing and balance cholesterol levels.2

The different forms of Pantothenic Acid                                                                                                                 

There are a variety of different forms of pantothenic acid. This nutrient is most commonly found in its coenzyme form, coenzyme A (CoA), which is also the form in which the human body stores this vitamin.2 Coenzyme A and acetyl carrier protein are the forms of pantothenic acid that are mostly found in food sources.4 These forms must be broken down into pantothenic acid before the body is able to absorb the nutrient.4

Pantothenol and calcium pantothenate are stable forms of pantothenic acid, and due to their stability, are typically found in nutrition supplements.2 These forms also need to be converted into pantothenic acid for nutrient absorption.2

Sources of Pantothenic Acid – From food and nutrition supplements

Pantothenic acid is widely distributed and is found in most animal and plant tissue.Dietary sources with a high content of pantothenic acid include a large variety of food sources such as mushrooms, liver, poultry, dairy, coffee, sunflower seeds, legumes, whole grains, and fortified cereals.1, 3, 4 Pantothenic acid is mostly found in the form of Coenzyme A in food sources.4

Pantothenic acid is a stable nutrient, but the content can be diminished from highly processed foods.5 This vitamin is naturally sensitive to heat and light, therefore the nutrient content can be diminished or destroyed when preparing meals.1 To preserve the nutrient content it is best to cook pantothenic acid rich foods for shorter durations at lower temperatures.

The bacteria found in the large intestine can also create pantothenic acid, however, the bioavailability from this source has not been determined.2

Recommended daily dose of Pantothenic Acid – What physicians advise

The recommended daily dose for nutrients is unique to a person’s age, gender, and other personal factors. A recommended dietary allowance (RDA) has not been established, but the Food and Nutrition Board (FNB) set adequate intake (AI) levels for pantothenic acid. The adequate intake amounts shown in Table 1 are a reference for nutritional adequacy in seemingly healthy individuals. The adequate intake of pantothenic acid for adults is 5 mg (milligrams) for both men and women.

Pantothenic acid intake can alter the nutrient’s bioavailability. When pantothenic acid intakes are low that is when the vitamin is most bioavailable as opposed to when intakes are high the absorption process for this nutrient is much slower.1

Adequate Intake (AI) of Pantothenic Acid
Infants (0 – 12 months) 1.7 – 1.8 mg/day
Children (1 -8 years) 2 – 3 mg/day
Adolescents (9 – 18 years) 4 – 5 mg/day
Adults (19+ years) 5 mg/day
Pregnant and Lactating Women 6 – 7 mg/day

Table 1: Daily Pantothenic Acid Adequate Intake (AI) for Healthy Individuals4

Certain populations may need to be more mindful when evaluating their pantothenic acid needs. With any particular medication or health condition it is always best to consult with your primary healthcare provider before taking the Healthycell® products or any nutrition supplement.

Pantothenic Acid toxicity – Very rare

As pantothenic acid is a water-soluble B vitamin it is easily flushed out of the body when consumed in excess amounts. Since it not stored in fat cells of fatty tissue it does not have any known toxic effects. As pantothenic acid is considered non-toxic, a maximum daily consumption level that may cause an adverse event, or a tolerable upper intake level (UL) has not been established. However, with certain forms of this nutrients there have been reports of diarrhea or gastrointestinal discomfort when taken in extremely high doses such as 10 – 20 mg/day.1,2

Pantothenic Acid deficiency, symptoms, and people at risk  

As pantothenic acid is so widely found in dietary sources, deficiencies are considered to be rare.1 Populations at risk for developing a pantothenic acid deficiency are typically individuals who suffer from extreme malnourishment.3,4

Symptoms of pantothenic acid deficiency include burning and tingling in the legs and feet, gastrointestinal issues, neurology issues such as muscle ramps and numbness, and fatigue.1, 3, 4

Pantothenic Acid in Healthycell® Pro – Only the best form

The source of pantothenic acid in Healthycell® Pro is D-Calcium pantothenate. The dosage of pantothenic acid in Healthycell® Pro is 9 mg in the morning formula and 9 mg in the evening formula, for a daily dose of 18 mg, satisfying 180% of the Daily Value (%DV).

The form of pantothenic acid Healthycell® is D-calcium pantothenate. The dosage of pantothenic acid in Healthycell® is 7 mg in the morning formula and 7 mg in the evening formula, for a daily dose of 14 mg, satisfying 140% of the Daily Value (%DV). Nutrition supplement labeling and food labeling guidelines use Reference Daily Intake (RDI) as the standard for dosage.

References

1. McGuire, Michelle, PhD, and Kathy Beerman A., PhD. “Chapter 10

Water-Soluble Vitamins.” Nutritional Sciences: From Fundamentals to

Food. 2nd ed. Australia: Thomson/Wadsworth, 2007. 454-456. Print.

2. Higdon, Jane, et al. “Pantothenic Acid.” Oregon State University,

Linus Pauling Institute, 6 June 2017, lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/vitamins/

pantothenic-acid#disease-treatment.

3. Institute of Medicine (US) Standing Committee on the Scientific Evaluation

of Dietary Reference Intakes and its Panel on Folate, Other B Vitamins, and

Choline. Dietary Reference Intakes for Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, Vitamin B6,

Vitamin B12, Pantothenic Acid, Biotin, and Choline. Washington (DC): National

Academies Press (US); 1998. 10, Pantothenic Acid

4. Brasaemle, Dawn, PhD. “Pantothenate Lecture.” Rutgers University –

Pantothenic Acid. New Brunswick. 2015. Lecture

5. “Your Organic Source for Energy.” Orgen-B® | Organic B Vitamins | O

rgen® Family. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 June 2017.

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