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Pantothenic Acid (vitamin B5)

By David Coory

Pantothenic Acid (or vitamin B5 as it is now commonly known) is found in human breast milk and nearly all foods, but mostly in only tiny amounts, although 100 mg of liver can supply one day’s need.

However about one third of Pantothenic Acid is destroyed if food is cooked at high temperatures and baking soda can also neutralise Pantothenic Acid in food. Fortunately Pantothenic Acid can be made in our intestines by enzymes and friendly bacteria when our digestive system is working properly, but sometimes this appears to be impaired.

Pantothenic Acid is required by our immune system to prevent inflammation in the body. Inflammation is the cause of many, if not most serious health disorders including, heart disease and arthritis. It also helps the body manage its weight better, make better use of Omega 3 and protect the friendly probiotic bacteria in our intestines from damage by antibiotics. It also protects against acne and burning feet.

When taken as a 900 mg daily dose, studies have shown that Pantothenic Acid typically lowers high LDL cholesterol by 21% and high blood fats (trigly­cerides) by 32%. This is superior to any Statin type drug and without side effects.

Dr Robert Atkins pioneered the use of large dosages of Pantothenic Acid as a natural healer. He claims that Pantothenic Acid is “the single best substance on the planet for re-establishing optimal levels of cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood.”

Dr Atkins reported similar results with over 90% of his heart patients (more than 20,000 case histories). He would also tell his patients they could eat whatever they like (except excess carbs) provided they take their Pantothenic Acid.

He also found that Pantothenic Acid had a spectacular healing rate with other inflammatory disorders such as gout, arthritis, lupus, colitis and Crohn’s disease. He used it to replace the drug prednisone and found that Pantothenic Acid had none of the serious side effects of prednisone. Excellent results can also be obtained by treating yeast infections such as candida. A remedy for burning feet and gout is 200 mg, four times a day. Dr Atkins writes, “Pantethine’s results aren’t just good. They’re spectacular. I use Pantethine and Pantothenic Acid together, making them the number one nutrient used in my practice.” Pantothenic Acid converts to Pantethine in the body, but evidently taking pantethine together with Pantothenic Acid can double its effectiveness.

Pantothenic Acid is also important to a healthy digestive system and 900 mgs daily are sometimes prescribed by surgeons to get the stomach working again after an operation.

A lack of Pantothenic Acid in animals is known to cause grey hair, and restoring the deficiency restores the original hue. But experiments with large doses have failed to restore human hair to its former colour. Better results might be achieved with longevity – Pantothenic Acid at three times the normal intake increased the average life span of mice by 20%, to the human equivalent of 90 years.