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Vitamins are compounds that you must have for growth and health. They are needed in only small amounts and are usually available in the foods that you eat. Pantothenic acid (vitamin B 5) is needed for the breakdown of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats.
No problems have been found that are due to a lack of pantothenic acid alone. However, a lack of one B vitamin usually goes along with a lack of others, so pantothenic acid is often included in B complex products.
Claims that pantothenic acid is effective for treatment of nerve damage, breathing problems, itching and other skin problems, and poisoning with some other drugs; for getting rid of or preventing gray hair; for preventing arthritis, allergies, and birth defects; or for improving mental ability have not been proven.
This vitamin is available without a prescription.
Importance of Diet
For good health, it is important that you eat a balanced and varied diet. Follow carefully any diet program your health care professional may recommend. For your specific dietary vitamin and/or mineral needs, ask your health care professional for a list of appropriate foods. If you think that you are not getting enough vitamins and/or minerals in your diet, you may choose to take a dietary supplement.
Pantothenic acid is found in various foods including peas and beans (except green beans), lean meat, poultry, fish, and whole-grain cereals. Little pantothenic acid is lost from foods with ordinary cooking.
Vitamins alone will not take the place of a good diet and will not provide energy. Your body also needs other substances found in food—protein, minerals, carbohydrates, and fat.
The daily amount of pantothenic acid needed is defined in several different ways.
Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDAs) are the amount of vitamins and minerals needed to provide for adequate nutrition in most healthy persons. RDAs for a given nutrient may vary depending on a person's age, sex, and physical condition (e.g., pregnancy).
Daily Values (DVs) for nutrients are used on food and dietary supplement labels to indicate the percent of the recommended daily amount of each nutrient that a serving provides. DVs replace the previous designation of United States Recommended Daily Allowances (USRDAs).
Recommended Nutrient Intakes (RNIs) are used to determine the amounts of vitamins, minerals, and protein needed to provide adequate nutrition and lessen the risk of chronic disease.
Because lack of pantothenic acid is so rare, there is no RDA or RNI for this vitamin. The following daily intakes are thought to be plenty for most individuals:
Infants and children—
Birth to 3 years of age: 2 to 3 milligrams (mg).
4 to 6 years of age: 3 to 4 mg.
7 to 10 years of age: 4 to 5 mg.
Adolescents and adults—4 to 7 mg.
This product is available in the following dosage forms:
Portions of this document last updated: Feb. 01, 2023
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