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Calcium Pantothenate

Calcium Pantothenate

Calcium Pantothenate

Calcium pantothenate is the calcium salt of the water-soluble vitamin B5, also known as pantothenic acid.

Pantothenic acid is an essential nutrient that plays a crucial role in various biological processes within the body.

It is a component of coenzyme A (CoA), which is involved in numerous metabolic pathways, including the synthesis and breakdown of fatty acids, as well as the metabolism of carbohydrates and proteins.

Calcium pantothenate is commonly used as a dietary supplement to provide the body with an additional source of vitamin B5.

Vitamin B5 supplements are often taken as tablets, capsules, and powders to support overall health and well-being, as pantothenic acid is important for the proper functioning of the nervous system, skin health, and the synthesis of hormones and cholesterol.

In this article, we’ll explore the role that calcium pantothenate plays in producing pantothenic acid, and then we’ll look at the role of vitamin B5 and the numerous benefits of optimising your intake.

Now, before we can understand calcium pantothenate, we need to first get to know vitamin B5.

What is vitamin B5?

Vitamin B5 is a water-soluble vitamin that is part of the B-vitamin complex.

And since vitamin B5 is water-soluble, it is not stored in the body in large amounts, and regular dietary intake is necessary to meet the body's requirements.

It plays a crucial role in various biological processes within the body, and its importance lies in its involvement in the synthesis and metabolism of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins.

What is Calcium Pantothenate, and what is it used for?

So now that we understand a bit more about vitamin B5, we can get back to calcium pantothenate.

Pantothenic acid is often present in dietary supplements that contain either only pantothenic acid, in B-complex dietary supplements, or in multi-vitamin and mineral supplements.

And, put simply, the pantothenic acid in those dietary supplements is often in the form of calcium pantothenate or pantethine.

So calcium pantothenate is, in its most simplest of terms, the equivalent of pantothenic acid (or vitamin B5).

Formula makers often choose calcium pantothenate as an ingredient in supplements because of its stability and its resistance to breaking down over time.

Vitamin B5 Benefits

Pantothenic acid is a vitamin that helps your body make blood cells and convert food into energy.

Here are some key functions and reasons why vitamin B5 is important:

Coenzyme A (CoA) synthesis

Vitamin B5 is a key component in the synthesis of coenzyme A (CoA).

CoA is involved in several metabolic pathways, acting as a cofactor for enzymes that play a role in the breakdown of fatty acids, the synthesis of cholesterol and other sterols, and the metabolism of carbohydrates and amino acids. (1)

Energy production

Coenzyme A is also essential for the conversion of nutrients into energy.

It participates in the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle, also known as the citric acid cycle or Krebs cycle.

This cycle refers to the series of chemical reactions that generate energy via the oxidation of acetyl-coenzyme A (CoA) derived from carbohydrates, fatty acids and proteins. (2)

Fatty acid synthesis

Vitamin B5 is involved in the synthesis of fatty acids, which are essential components of cell membranes and play a role in energy storage.

Fatty acid oxidation is a significant bodily process in providing an alternative mode of high-efficiency energy production while simultaneously sparing muscles from catabolic breakdown. (3).

Because pantothenic acid helps to break down fats, it has been studied for a potential role in reducing cholesterol levels in people, but research in this area is still limited and developing. (4)

Skincare & acne

Pantothenic acid is often used in skincare products due to its potential benefits for skin health.

It is believed to contribute to the maintenance of healthy skin and the healing of wounds. (5)

Foods that are high in vitamin B5

Almost all plant- and animal-based foods contain pantothenic acid in varying amounts

So, generally speaking, a well-balanced diet of including fresh meats, vegetables and unprocessed grains should provide sufficient amounts of pantothenic acid for most individuals.

Edible animal and plant tissues contain relatively high concentrations of pantothenic acid. Good dietary sources of vitamin B5 include:

  • Beef liver;
  • Shitake mushrooms;
  • Sunflower seeds;
  • Chicken breast;
  • Tuna;
  • Avocado;
  • Milk;
  • Mushrooms;
  • Potatoes;
  • Eggs;
  • Greek yoghurt;
  • Ground beef;
  • Peanuts (roasted);
  • Broccoli;
  • Pita;
  • Chickpeas;
  • Brown rice;
  • Oats;
  • Cheddar cheese;
  • Carrots;
  • Cabbage; and
  • Tomatoes and cherry tomatoes.

However, it should be noted that food processing has been reported to cause significant losses in vitamin B5 value (20% to almost 80%). (7)

For example, boiling foods has been shown to reduce the amount of vitamin B5 by up to 67%. (8)

If you need to boost your B5, you might be looking towards supplements.

Signs & symptoms of a B5 deficiency

Since pantothenic acid is so widely found in foods, deficiencies are somewhat rate.

They typically only occur in people with other nutrient deficiencies or in persons with genetic mutations that mean pantothenic acid cannot be metabolised. (9)

Symptoms of by deficiency may include:

  • Headache;
  • Fatigue;
  • Irritability, restlessness;
  • Disturbed sleep;
  • Nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps;
  • Numbness or burning sensation in hands or feet; and/or
  • Muscle cramps.

Dosage

Calcium pantothenate is generally recognised as safe (GRAS) in the United States and in Europe.

More broadly for vitamin B5, the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for men and women ages 19+ years is 5mg daily.

For pregnancy, the amount increases to 6mg, and then to 7mg daily for breastfeeding. (10)

Vitamin B5 is recommended to be taken with water, and not on an empty stomach.

Side effects and toxicity

Researchers haven’t observed a toxic level of pantothenic acid from food sources.

However, when people consume very large daily doses of pantothenic acid, upwards of 10g a day, they may experience mild diarrhoea and gastrointestinal distress. (11)

It should also be noted that taking any one of the B vitamins for extended periods of time can result in an imbalance of other important B vitamins.

Vitamin B5 is not likely to interact with medications.

Conclusion

Calcium pantothenate is included in supplements for its role as a source of vitamin B5.

This vitamin is essential for various biological functions in the body, and supplementing with calcium pantothenate can help ensure an adequate intake.

When present in supplements that aren’t solely produced to increase the level of pantothenic acid in the body, calcium pantothenate is typically added by formula makers because it is very stable and won’t degrade as it sits on the shelves of chemists and pharmacies.

It's important to note that, in general, a well-balanced diet should provide sufficient amounts of pantothenic acid for most individuals.

As with any supplement, it's advisable to consult with a healthcare professional before starting a new dietary regimen or taking supplements.

References

  1. Institute of Medicine. Food and Nutrition Board. Dietary Reference Intakes: Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Vitamin B12, Pantothenic Acid, Biotin, and Choline. Washington, DC: National Academy Press; 1998.
  2. Choi I, Son H, Baek JH. Tricarboxylic Acid (TCA) Cycle Intermediates: Regulators of Immune Responses. Life (Basel). 2021 Jan 19;11(1):69. doi: 10.3390/life11010069. PMID: 33477822; PMCID: PMC7832849.
  3. Houten SM, Violante S, Ventura FV, Wanders RJ. The Biochemistry and Physiology of Mitochondrial Fatty Acid β-Oxidation and Its Genetic Disorders. Annu Rev Physiol. 2016;78:23-44. [PubMed] [Reference list]
  4. Jung S, Kim MK, Choi BY. The long-term relationship between dietary pantothenic acid (vitamin B5) intake and C-reactive protein concentration in adults aged 40 years and older. Nutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases. 2017 Sep 1;27(9):806-16.
  5. Wei J, Meng L, Hou X, Qu C, Wang B, Xin Y, Jiang X. Radiation-induced skin reactions: mechanism and treatment. Cancer Manag Res. 2018 Dec 21;11:167-177. doi: 10.2147/CMAR.S188655. PMID: 30613164; PMCID: PMC6306060.
  6. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service. FoodData Central
  7. Miller JW, Rucker RB. Pantothenic acid. In: Erdman JW, Macdonald IA, Zeisel SH, eds. Present Knowledge in Nutrition. 10th ed. Washington, DC: Wiley-Blackwell; 2012:375-90.
  8. Hrubša M, Siatka T, Nejmanová I, Vopršalová M, Kujovská Krčmová L, Matoušová K, Javorská L, Macáková K, Mercolini L, Remião F, Máťuš M, Mladěnka P, On Behalf Of The Oemonom. Biological Properties of Vitamins of the B-Complex, Part 1: Vitamins B1, B2, B3, and B5. Nutrients. 2022 Jan 22;14(3):484. doi: 10.3390/nu14030484. PMID: 35276844; PMCID: PMC8839250.
  9. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Pantothenic Acid Fact Sheet for Health Professionals. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/PantothenicAcid-HealthProfessional/. Accessed 2/3/20.
  10. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Pantothenic Acid Fact Sheet for Health Professionals. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/PantothenicAcid-HealthProfessional/. Accessed 2/3/20.
  11. Miller JW, Rucker RB. Pantothenic acid. In: Erdman JW, Macdonald IA, Zeisel SH, eds. Present Knowledge in Nutrition. 10th ed. Washington, DC: Wiley-Blackwell; 2012:375-90.