Scientists originally thought that what they called ‘water-soluble B’ was one vitamin. They later learned it actually consists of eight separate substances: vitamin B-1, or thiamine ; Vitamin B-2, or riboflavin ; Vitamin B-6, or pyridoxine ; and Vitamin B-12. It’s also Vitamin B-3, or pantothenic acid; Vitamin B-7, biotin ; and folate, which is also called folacin and folic acid. In general, the B-complex vitamins, as they’re known, are important for metabolizing foods and breaking down carbohydrates, fats, and amino acids to provide energy and heat for the body. They’re also required to produce D-N-A, the essential building block of life, so without them, animal species couldn’t reproduce, and life would be impossible. Some of the best food sources of B-complex vitamins include brewer’s yeast, dried chick-peas, egg whites, soy products, green vegetables, brown rice and other whole grains. Cooking sometimes destroys Vitamin B in foods. There are many, many health problems– both minor and serious– that can result from a deficiency in B vitamins. Stress also causes Vitamin B depletion in the body. For more information about Vitamin B’s benefits and what can result from not having enough, contact a health care professional.