Essential Vitamins

Vitamins Guide – VITAMIN B5

Pantothenic acid or vitamin B5 in vitamin B5-rich foods

Vitamin B5-Rich Foods

Vitamin B5, also known as pantothenic acid, is an essential nutrient that plays a crucial role in many bodily functions, including energy metabolism and the production of hormones and neurotransmitters. Chemically, pantothenic acid is the combination of pantoic acid and the amino acid β-alanine (beta-alanine). Its name is from the Greek pantos, which means “from everywhere.” That is because vitamin B5 is at least present in small quantities in nearly every food, so human deficiency is extremely rare.

Vitamin B5 RDA

The recommended daily allowance (RDA) of vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid) is 5 mg for adults, 6 mg for pregnant women, and 7 mg for breastfeeding mothers. For our purposes, we’ll set the RDA at 6 mg. The vitamin is not toxic if uptake is excess. The safe upper limit for long-term use of supplements is 200 mg. High doses may cause diarrhea.

Pantothenic Acid

Pantothenic acid or vitamin B5 is also called pantothenate by nutritionists – they are all the same thing. It is a water-soluble vitamin and is widely found in most foods, but the following is a list of vitamin B5-rich foods: 

  • Royal Jelly: See below.
  • Whole grains: wheat, rice, barley, maize, rye, oats, buckwheat, quinoa.
  • Beans: black-eyed peas, cannellini beans, chickpeas, kidney beans, lima beans, pinto beans.
  • Vegetables: potato, green peas, mushrooms, sweet potato, chickpeas, artichoke, asparagus, carrot.
  • Nuts: peanuts, sunflower seeds, flaxseeds, walnuts, cashews, almonds.
  • Eggs: chicken eggs, quail eggs, duck eggs, caviar, goose eggs, turkey eggs.
  • Meats: chicken breast, liver, turkey, pork, ground beef.
  • Yeast extract: food flavoring made from the yeast used to make bread and beer.

Royal Jelly

Royal jelly is fed to bee larvae by worker bees. It is a gelatinous material produced in the head glands of ‘nurse’ bees. Royal jelly makes a specific larva develop into a queen bee and is rich in vitamins, proteins, and amino acids. However, it has exceptionally high levels of vitamin B5 and vitamin B6. Just one gram of Royal Jelly contains around 340 mg of vitamin B5! However, to supplement with that stuff would be going way over the top. And it’s expensive. Instead, stick to our EV-16 essential vitamins to get ALL the necessary ones if you require them because of your age or other circumstances.

Vitamin B5 is Easily Destroyed

Be careful when cooking vitamin B5-rich foods, as heat destroys 50 percent of the vitamin in meats and an additional 30 percent when cooking juices. In addition, up to 75 percent of the pantothenic acid content is lost in processed foods. Also, freezing food causes the gradual destruction of the vitamin.

Vitamin B5 Uses


As with other B-complex vitamins, pantothenic acid plays an important role in many energy-yielding metabolic reactions involving carbs, fats, and proteins. One of its crucial roles is in synthesizing glucose and fatty acids essential for muscular performance. However, that doesn’t mean this vitamin can be used to cheat in sports!   

Weight Loss?

Although this topic is a gray area, it has been suggested that supplementing with vitamin B5 may help during weight-loss diets. That’s because the vitamin ensures fatty acids released from the body’s fat reserves are fully broken down. It is believed that this reduces ketone formation and hunger pangs. Perhaps, but there’s no proof of this as yet, and more research needs to be done to verify this belief. Maybe researchers ought to do extensive tests with a full complement of 75+ pure plant-derived minerals together with the vitamin. It’s a known fact that hunger sensations are reduced once the body has all the minerals it needs, as it’s no longer screaming out for them.


Pantothenic acid helps produce adrenal hormones when you’re under stress, so it boosts stress resistance. It also helps to keep the nervous system in good health. In addition, there are suggestions that the vitamin eases indigestion and chronic fatigue and may even help smokers give up inhaling the harmful smoke of burning tobacco.


It is known that eating vitamin B5-rich foods (without destroying the vitamin by cooking) helps stimulate cell growth in damaged tissues. It does this by boosting the number and speed of cells moving into the wounded site, increasing cell division rate and the synthesis of proteins. The result is stronger scar tissue and rejuvenating skin.

Vitamin B5 Benefits

Rheumatoid Arthritis

There is intriguing evidence for the claim that vitamin B5 may improve the conditions of people with rheumatoid arthritis. In lab rat studies over half a century ago, it was noted that young rats deficient in the vitamin had abnormal bone and cartilage development. However, when given vitamin B5 supplementation, the abnormality reversed. Later it was discovered that blood levels of the vitamin were significantly lower in folk with rheumatoid arthritis.

Eureka Moment

When people with rheumatoid arthritis were given daily injections of calcium pantothenate, it was found that their blood vitamin B5 levels increased, and the symptoms decreased. But, to prove the point, when the jabs were stopped, the arthritis came back. Unfortunately, no further studies were done (one wonders why?).

Double-blind Study

In a 1980 US double-blind study (a clinical trial in which neither the volunteers nor the researchers knew which treatment was given to whom until the clinical trial ended), it was found that the effects of oral calcium pantothenate for reducing the impact of morning stiffness, pain, and disability in people with rheumatoid arthritis were significant compared to placebo takers. The findings showed that the supplement that boosted vitamin B5 was effective against rheumatoid arthritis but no other forms of arthritis. Clearly, the other types of the disease have different causes. The researchers should do tests with a full complement of plant-derived minerals. Somehow, that won’t happen because the results might impinge on profits from expensive drugs.

Vitamin B5 Deficiency 

The following list should NOT be taken as gospel, but these are symptoms that MAY be linked to a lack of vitamin B5 by not eating enough foods rich in vitamin b5-rich foods:

  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Stress
  • Muscle cramping
  • Numbness and tingling
  • Loss of appetite
  • Indigestion
  • Poor wound healing
  • Sleeping difficulties

What Happened to Vitamin B4?

What happened to vitamin B4? Well, the simple answer is that of the original B vitamins list (B1 to B12), vitamins B4, B8, B10, and B11 are now no longer considered to meet the ‘definition’ of a vitamin. That is, they are not essential for growth and nutrition. The complete definition of a vitamin is as follows:

  • ‘Any of a group of organic compounds ESSENTIAL for growth and nutrition and required in small amounts in the diet because the body CAN’T make them.’

Vitamin = vital amine, where an amine is a nitrogen compound in which one or more of the hydrogen atoms in ammonia (NH3) is replaced by an alkyl or aryl group.

7 Amazing Vitamin B5-Rich Foods

If you're looking to boost your intake of this important vitamin, here are seven delicious and nutritious vitamin B5-rich foods to add to your diet:

Vitamin B5-Rich Foods: Dried Shiitake Mushrooms

Dried Shiitake mushrooms have to most vitamin B5 in any food!

Dried Shiitake mushrooms come top of the list for having the most vitamin B5 content. Three ounces of dried Shiitake mushrooms contain 18.7 mg of pantothenic acid or 312 percent of the RDA. They are enjoyable and have a range of other beneficial nutrients. No other vitamin B5-rich food contains as much B5 as this.

Vitamin B5-Rich Foods: Chicken Liver

Liver meat is a superfood, topping the charts regarding vitamin B5-rich foods. Three ounces of chicken liver contains 8.3 mg of the vitamin and vitamin B12, which is 167 percent more than the 6 mg RDA for adults, but don’t worry about the slight excess as it isn’t toxic. In addition, chicken liver is a food recommended for preventing anemia.

Vitamin B5-Rich Foods: Sunflower Seeds

Sunflower seeds are not only a tasty snack but also a great source of vitamin B5. Three ounces of sunflower seeds contain about 6 mg of vitamin B5, which is the recommended daily intake for adults. They are also high in healthy fats, protein, and fiber, making them a great addition to your diet. Try sprinkling sunflower seeds on top of your salads, yogurt, or oatmeal for a crunchy and nutritious boost. In addition, the seeds are a vitamin B5-rich source for vegans and vegetarians.

Vitamin B5-Rich Foods: Avocado

Avocado is not only a delicious and versatile fruit, but it’s also another one of the vitamin B5-rich foods. One medium avocado contains about 2.5 mg of pantothenic acid, about 40 percent of the recommended daily intake for adults. Avocado is also rich in healthy fats, fiber, and other important nutrients, making it a great addition to any diet. Try adding sliced avocado to your salads, sandwiches, or smoothies for a boost of vitamin B5 and other health benefits.

Vitamin B5-Rich Foods: Mushrooms

Did you know that edible mushrooms from the shops are one of the great vitamin B5-rich foods? Although not as rich in vitamin B5 as dried Shiitake mushrooms, one cup of sliced mushrooms contains about 1.3 mg of pantothenic acid or about 21 percent of the recommended daily intake for adults. Mushrooms are also low in calories and fat, making them a great addition to any meal. Add sliced mushrooms to your omelets, salads, or stir-fries for a boost of vitamin B5 and flavor.

Vitamin B5-Rich Foods: Sweet Potatoes

A Sea lion in our Sweet Potatoes!

Sweet potatoes are not only a tasty addition to any meal but also one of the best source vitamin B5-rich foods. One medium sweet potato contains about 1.2 mg of pantothenic acid or about 20 percent of the recommended daily intake for adults. Sweet potatoes are also rich in fiber, vitamins A and C, and other essential nutrients. Try roasting them with a sprinkle of cinnamon for a sweet and savory side dish, or mash them up for a healthier twist on mashed potatoes.

Vitamin B5-Rich Foods: Broccoli

Did you know that broccoli is another one of the excellent sources of vitamin B5-rich foods? One cup of broccoli contains about 0.5 mg of pantothenic acid, which is about 8% of the recommended daily intake for adults. However, broccoli is also high in other important nutrients such as vitamin C, fiber, and antioxidants. So, try adding broccoli to your stir-fries, salads, or roasted vegetable dishes for a delicious and nutritious boost of vitamin B5.

Vitamin B5 Supplementation

Essential 16 Vitamins

Due to the easy loss of vitamin B5 from vitamin B5-rich foods in the cooking process, it might be wise the top-up with the vitamin via supplementation. There is no better way to do this than supplementing with ALL 16 essential vitamins at the same time, not just vitamin B1. Our EV-16 Essential 16 Vitamins give you TWICE the recommended daily allowance of most of these essential vitamins. Below is a complete list of the vitamins in these supplements:

  • Vitamin A (retinyl acetate) 0.8 mg or 100% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B1 (Thaimine) 2.2 mg or 200% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 2.8 mg or 200% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 32 mg or 200% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B5 (Pantothenate) 12 mg or 200% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine) 2.8 mg or 200% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B7 (Biotin) 0.1 mg or 200% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B12 (Methyl cobalamin) 5 mcg or 200% of the RDA
  • Vitamin C (L-ascorbic acid) 160 mg or 200% of the RDA
  • Vitamin D3 (Cholecalciferol) 10 mcg or 67% of the RDA
  • Vitamin E (DL-α-tocopheryl acetate) 24 mg or 160% of the RDA
  • Vitamin K1 (Phytomenadione) 75 mcg or 200% of the RDA
  • Choline 82.5 mg **
  • Bioflavonoids 5 mg **
  • Folic Acid 0.4 mg or 200% of the RDA
  • Inositol 50 mg **
  • ** daily value not established. Other Ingredients: Microcrystalline Cellulose, Maltodextrin, Magnesium Stearate (Vegetable Source)

Links: UMM

Synonymous terms: vitamin b5 rich foods

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