Vitamin B5 Rich Foods

Foods which are good sources of pantothenic acid

Pantothenic acid is an essential, water soluble nutrient also known as vitamin B5 and sometimes the ‘anti-stress’ vitamin. It is required by the body for essential cellular processes and optimal fat maintenance. As water soluble vitamins are well regulated by the body, overdose is rare and may only be noticed in the form of diarrhoea or mild digestive problems.

There has been very little research into the optimal daily intake of pantothenic acid. We have used the most recent available research for the RDI ranges in the table to the right.

What is vitamin B5 and why do you need it?

Vitamin B5 is also known as pantothenic acid. It is a component of Coenzyme A , which is required for the generation of energy from fats, carbohydrates and proteins. This coenzyme synthesizes neurotransmitters, hormones and cholesterol, and it also plays a role in cellular growth and blood maintenance within the body, and the removal of toxins by the liver.

If you eat a healthy diet, you should not have any trouble getting the required amount of B5. However, about half of this vitamin is lost when frozen meat is thawed and cooked, so it is preferable to use fresh meat whenever possible. On this page we will look at vitamin B5 foods and the benefits of this less-known nutrient.


RDI Vitamin B5

  • 5.0mg Adults (over 14 years)
  • 6.0mg Pregnant women
  • 7.0mg Breastfeeding women
  • 4.0mg Children 9-13 years
  • 3.0mg Children 4-8 years
  • 2.0mg Toddler 1-3 years
  • 1.8mg Infants 7-12 months
  • 1.7mg Infants 0-6 months


Benefits of Vitamin B5

Why we need pantothenic acid

Benefits of pantothenic acid:

This vitamin
– is essential for growth and development
– is essential for brain activity
– regulates the formation of stress hormones
– regulates hair pigmentation and growth
– enables the body to synthesize red blood cells, hormones and vitamin D
– helps prevent the buildup of toxins in the bloodstream

Best vitamin B5 foods

Here are some of the best sources of pantothenic acid. All amounts are given per 100 g (3.5oz).

  • Chicken liver, cooked – 8.32 mg
  • Sunflower seeds – 7.06 mg
  • Shiitake mushrooms, cooked – 3.59mg
  • Spirulina, seaweed – 3.48mg
  • Trout, cooked – 2.24mg
  • Sun dried tomatoes – 2.09 mg
  • Lobster, cooked – 1.67 mg
  • Pork sirloin, cooked – 1.65 mg
  • Eggs – 1.53 mg
  • Avocado – 1.46 mg
  • Peanuts – 1.40 mg
  • Chicken drumstick, cooked – 1.32mg
  • Sweet potato, baked – 0.88 mg
  • Peas, cooked – 0.86 mg
  • Sweetcorn – 0.79 mg

Vitamin B5 is commonly found in fortified breakfast cereals. If you are concerned you are not getting enough of this nutrient, as well as other B vitamins, be sure to check the product labels.


 Vitamin B5 deficiency

A deficiency in Pantothenic acid is rare because it occurs in all natural foods. However, if you are low in vitamin B5 you are almost certainly deficient in other B vitamins as well.
Symptoms include fatigue, irritability, numbness of the extremities and weakness.

Other uses of pantothenic acid

Supplements of pantothenic acid, commonly known as Pantethine in this form, can be used to help lower high cholesterol.
A form of this vitamin called Panthoderm is available in skin creams and lotions. It is used to soothe cuts, abrasions and mild burns.

Medicinal pantothenic acid is not suitable for children under age 12.