While there are many people now following a vegan lifestyle, not everyone following it is getting the proper nutrition. Your body still needs important vitamins and minerals. Among those, the B vitamins are essential for your body. They are responsible for converting food to energy, keeping your hair, skin, and nails healthy, promoting proper brain function, red blood cell production, and so much more.
But that does not mean you need to change from veganism in order to get enough B vitamins in your daily diet. Here is a list of all the B vitamins your body needs and what vegan foods you can eat to get these essential nutrients into your body.
Known as thiamin, this vitamin can be found in both baker’s yeast and nutritional yeast, pine nuts, Jerusalem artichokes, watermelon, sunflower seeds, soybeans, macadamia nuts, tahini, asparagus, most beans, green peas, and sesame seeds. A salad with Jerusalem artichokes, pine nuts, sunflower seeds, and green peas on top would be a great way to get plenty of vitamin B1.
Often known as riboflavin, you will find vitamin B2 in almonds, spinach, mushrooms, quinoa, buckwheat, prunes, and fortified soy milk. Spinach sauteed with slices of almonds is a tasty way to add more B2 in your daily intake.
Vitamin B3 or niacin is found in things like peanuts and peanut butter, rice bran, barley, potatoes, millet, chia, whole grains, tomatoes, avocados, coffee, and wild rice. A slice of whole grain toast slathered with natural peanut butter is a great snack that contains lots of niacin.
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Pantothenic acid, vitamin B5, is in paprika, mushrooms, broccoli, tomatoes, avocados, sweet potatoes and both baker’s yeast and nutritional yeast. Enjoy some quinoa with nutritional yeast and broccoli for a great dose of vitamin B5.
You will find pyridoxine, otherwise known as vitamin B6, in all soy products as well as bananas, chia seeds, beans, chickpeas, pineapple, plantains, hearts of palm, artichokes, pumpkin, squash, Brussels sprouts, figs, garlic, kale, and much more.
Biotin, or vitamin B7, is fantastic for bringing your hair back to life. Get more of it naturally by eating peanuts, almonds, chia, sweet potatoes, onions, oats, carrots, and walnuts.
Vitamin B9, or folate, is especially important for healthy brain function and something pregnant women must be sure to get enough of. Eat lentils, spinach, beans, asparagus, lettuce, mangoes, basil, cantaloupe, flax, cauliflower, okra, celery, and leeks to get enough folate in your life.
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Also known as cobalamin, vitamin B12 is one of the most important of B vitamins. Spirulina is the best source of this vitamin. If you consume at least one teaspoon of spirulina a day or 1-2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast, you will fulfill your B12 needs.
If not, you can get it in fortified coconut or almond milk, soy products, and fortified cereals, but you should make sure to supplement it with a B12 vitamin.
If you are eating these foods, it is safe to say you are getting plenty of B vitamins in your vegan diet. What are your favorite vegan foods with vitamin B?