You probably wouldn’t hear much about vitamin B5 except for the fact that it’s gotten a reputation as the “stress vitamin”, or, more accurately, the “anti-stress” vitamin. That’s because vitamin B5 is vitally important to your adrenals, which produce important hormones like cortisol and adrenaline, also known as “stress hormones”. Being under stress eats up vitamin B5, which is why many integrative practitioners suggest supplementing with B5 for those under a lot of stress.
Vitamin B5, also known as pantothenic acid, is an essential nutrient. Pantothenic comes from the Greek word pantos, which means everywhere. That’s because this vitamin is found all over the place, in both plant and animal foods. Pantothenic acid deficiency in humans is almost unheard of, but when scientists experimentally create deficiency in order to study it, they find headache, fatigue, insomnia, intestinal disturbances and impaired antibody production.
These symptoms might be because of the Coenzyme A connection. You see, you need Coenzyme A to metabolize protein, carbs, and fat, and vitamin B5 is needed to create Coenzyme A. That means you basically need vitamin B5 to metabolize your food. Best sources of the vitamin are organ meats like liver and kidney, egg yolks, avocados, cashew nuts and peanuts. Two of the richest sources of pantothenic acid are royal jelly and brewer’s yeast.