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b vitamin overdose symptoms

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Lana Butner, ND, LAc, is a board-certified naturopathic physician and licensed acupuncturist in personal follow in New York Metropolis.

Nutritional vitamins are important vitamins that maintain the physique wholesome, however it’s potential to have an excessive amount of of an excellent factor. Taking an extreme quantity of anyone vitamin may cause critical well being issues, a situation usually known as hypervitaminosis, or vitamin toxicity. Sure weight loss plan decisions may danger commonly overconsuming nutritional vitamins. Misusing vitamin dietary supplements could be very harmful. Some medicines also can improve the chance of vitamin toxicity, both by rising the physique’s absorption of a vitamin or by containing vitamin-based compounds.

In 2017, nutritional vitamins had been accountable for 59,761 poisonous exposures in america, 42,553 of which had been in kids beneath age 5, as listed by the Nationwide Poison Information System. Thankfully, the variety of critical medical outcomes related to vitamin toxicity is far decrease. However, you will need to acknowledge the signs and perceive the causes of vitamin toxicity.


Overuse of dietary supplements could result in poisonous results within the physique


What Are Nutritional vitamins?

Nutritional vitamins are a gaggle of important vitamins important to preserving your physique wholesome. The best quantities are vital to take care of a wholesome mind, bones, pores and skin, and blood. A number of nutritional vitamins additionally help in metabolizing meals. Many nutritional vitamins are usually not produced by the physique and have to be obtained by way of meals or vitamin dietary supplements, together with:

Fats-soluble vs. Water-soluble Nutritional vitamins

The principle distinction that determines the hazard of overdosing is whether or not a vitamin is fat- or water-soluble. Water-soluble nutritional vitamins are utilized by the physique as they’re digested and are usually not often absorbed in any physique tissues for an extended time frame. All important nutritional vitamins are water-soluble aside from nutritional vitamins A, D, E and Ok. These 4 are fat-soluble, which means the physique can maintain them saved inside fats deposits for long-term use. 

As a result of method nutritional vitamins are absorbed and utilized by the physique, some nutritional vitamins pose a decrease danger of a one-time poisonous dose. They solely trigger well being issues when taken in excessive doses repeatedly for a lot of days or in very excessive doses, often from misuse of dietary supplements. Fats-soluble nutritional vitamins are taken up by the physique shortly and might pose fast well being dangers when taken in moderate-to-extreme doses.

For these causes, care needs to be taken to make use of solely the advisable quantity of dietary supplements. Let’s think about every of the nutritional vitamins and the potential danger of vitamin toxicity for every one.

Contemplate the most typical nutritional vitamins and the way toxicity could happen if an extreme quantity of every is taken, together with the potential signs, prognosis, and coverings.

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Vitamin A

Vitamin A is utilized by the physique to advertise imaginative and prescient, the immune system response, and regular organ perform when consumed in average quantities. It’s a fat-soluble vitamin present in excessive concentrations in animal liver, kidney, and fish oil, and in average concentrations in dairy and eggs. Greens equivalent to candy potatoes and carrots are additionally average sources of vitamin A. 

Animal-based meals comprise preformed vitamin A that readily turns into usable by the physique by way of digestion, whereas plant-based meals typically comprise carotenoids generically known as provitamin A, which could be made into vitamin A within the liver.

The quantity of vitamin A in a meals or complement is indicated by retinol exercise equivalents (RAE), a measure of how readily the varied provitamin A compounds, equivalent to beta-carotene, change into vitamin A utilized by the physique. It could even be listed in worldwide models (IU), however FDA laws require product labels to checklist quantities in micrograms (mcg) RAE by 2021.

The advisable vitamin A from animal sources and retinoid-based dietary supplements per day varies for various individuals:

Adults ought to keep away from taking greater than 3,000 mcg RAE (10,000 IU). Retaining each day vitamin A consumption close to the advisable quantities is the most secure alternative as chronically taking extra could be dangerous. Pregnant individuals ought to keep away from ingesting Vitamin A dietary supplements throughout being pregnant or whereas making an attempt to conceive, as they’ll have teratogenic results, which ends up in developmental disturbances of the embryo/fetus.


Vitamin A toxicity generally impacts the pores and skin, inflicting reddening, irritation, and patchy peeling. Power, extreme complement use could result in extra extreme signs, together with:

These extreme signs correspond to lasting results on bone well being and potential liver injury.

A novel symptom of extra beta-carotene consumption, known as carotenodermia, causes a yellow or orange coloration of the pores and skin, however this situation is just not harmful.


Extreme consumption of animal meals sources, like liver or fish oil, along with dietary supplements excessive in preformed vitamin A, will increase the chance of vitamin A toxicity. Many multivitamins comprise vitamin A as a mixture of preformed vitamin A and provitamin A, so you will need to establish what sorts are current in these dietary supplements. 

Plant-derived beta-carotene, a provitamin A present in carrots, is metabolized otherwise than preformed vitamin A. It’s not discovered to be accountable for any of the intense signs of vitamin A toxicity.

Some medicines will have an effect on how the physique absorbs vitamin A. Orlistat, a typical weight reduction medicine, decreases the absorption of fat-soluble nutritional vitamins (together with vitamin A). Sufferers taking orlistat ought to take particular person liposomal types of fat-soluble nutritional vitamins (A, D, E, Ok) to replenish what the medicine strips from the physique.

Drugs known as retinoids include vitamin A associated compounds and are used for treating illnesses affecting the pores and skin, blood, and organ lining. These could improve the chance of toxicity when taken along with vitamin A dietary supplements.


If persistent vitamin A toxicity is recognized based mostly on a blood check, a very powerful plan of action is to cut back vitamin A consumption. In circumstances of a big poisonous dose, activated charcoal could be administered. If activated charcoal isn’t out there, and a hospital can’t be reached inside an hour, ipecac needs to be used to induce vomiting. In case of a vitamin overdose, poison management ought to at all times be contacted as quickly as potential at (800) 222-1222.

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B Nutritional vitamins

A lot of the B nutritional vitamins are vital for metabolism with capabilities linked to pores and skin, hair, mind, and muscle well being. Thankfully, aside from nutritional vitamins B3 and B6, vital vitamin toxicity is just not related to their overuse.

Vitamin B1 (Thiamin)

Vitamin B1, often known as thiamin, is present in beef, pork, entire grains, legumes, nuts, and sunflower seeds. The advisable each day quantity for adults is 1.2 mg for males and 1.1 mg for girls.

Vitamin B1 is just not recognized to be poisonous in excessive doses.

Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)

Vitamin B2, often known as riboflavin, is present in dairy, eggs, meat, salmon, entire grains, and leafy greens. The advisable each day quantity for adults is 1.3 mg for males and 1.1 mg for girls.

Vitamin B2 has not been proven to be poisonous in excessive doses.

Vitamin B3 (Niacin)

Vitamin B3, often known as niacin, is present in meat, fish, entire grains, and leafy greens. The advisable each day quantity for adults is 16 mg for males and 14 mg for girls.

Vitamin B3 is used therapeutically to handle ldl cholesterol. Nonetheless, individuals taking it could be vulnerable to toxicity when taking doses of fifty milligrams (mg) per day or extra for a chronic time frame. Be certain to test your levels of cholesterol after 30-60 days of a niacin (B3) protocol.

Pregnant ladies ought to keep away from taking an excessive amount of vitamin B3 as it may possibly trigger delivery defects.

Excessive one-time doses of vitamin B3 are usually not recognized to be poisonous. Nonetheless, B3 is contraindicated in sufferers with gout as it may possibly improve uric acid ranges. And when utilized in mixture with statins, there’s a increased danger of myopathy and rhabdomyolysis. B3 may trigger worsening of peptic ulcer illness.

Early signs of vitamin B3 toxicity are typically known as “niacin flush” as a consequence of vasodilation properties resulting in reddening of the pores and skin, itchiness, and burning. Whereas innocent, it is a crucial indicator of vitamin B3 toxicity. Extended overuse of vitamin B3 may cause liver injury, notably in individuals with pre-existing liver illness.

Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)

Vitamin B5, often known as pantothenic acid, is present in rooster, egg yolk, dairy, entire grains, legumes, mushrooms, kale, cabbage, and broccoli. The advisable each day quantity for adults is 5 mg. 

Vitamin B5 has not been proven to be poisonous in excessive doses, however in excessive doses could trigger diarrhea.

Vitamin B6

Vitamin B6 is a gaggle of compounds associated to pyridoxine present in poultry, pork, fish, entire grains, legumes and blueberries. The advisable each day quantity is 1.3 to 2 mg for adults.

Supplemental doses over 100 mg per day are usually not advisable for adults outdoors of therapeutic functions. Excessive doses of 1,000 to six,000 mg taken over an prolonged time frame can negatively have an effect on the mind, creating neurological signs like numbness and tingling within the extremities. It could trigger lack of coordination, pores and skin lesions, and disrupted digestion. The signs often resolve when the vitamin dietary supplements are discontinued.

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Vitamin B7 (Biotin)

Vitamin B7, often known as biotin, is present in liver, pork, eggs, dairy, banana, candy potato, and nuts. The advisable each day quantity for adults is 30 mcg. 

Vitamin B7 has not been proven to be poisonous in excessive doses.

Vitamin B9 (Folate, Folic Acid)

Vitamin B9, generally often known as folate or folic acid, is vital for brand new cell manufacturing in addition to early mind and backbone improvement of a fetus throughout being pregnant. It’s present in citrus and leafy greens.

The advisable each day quantity for adults is 400 mcg. Pregnant ladies ought to get 600 mcg and people who are lactating ought to get 500 mcg each day.

Folic acid is just not usually poisonous in excessive doses, however it may possibly obscure signs of pernicious anemia.

Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)

Vitamin B12, often known as cobalamin, is present in dairy, eggs, fish, poultry, and meat. The advisable each day quantity for adults is 2.4 mcg. 

Vitamin B12 has not been proven to be poisonous in excessive doses.


Vitamin C – “b vitamin overdose symptoms”

Vitamin C, often known as ascorbic acid, is utilized by the physique as an antioxidant to forestall injury to cells and in addition for the expansion and restore of tissues within the physique. It’s present in citrus fruit, potatoes, peppers, and greens. The advisable each day quantity for adults is 90 mg for males and 75 mg for girls.

Vitamin C is just not usually thought-about poisonous, however massive doses of two,000 mg per day can have an effect on digestion, inflicting diarrhea, cramps, and nausea.


Vitamin D

Vitamin D, often known as calciferol, assists calcium absorption and bone constructing. Pre-vitamin D could be produced within the pores and skin, however with extra individuals spending the vast majority of their time indoors or dwelling at latitudes with seasonally diminished solar, sunlit pores and skin alone could not present all of the vitamin D wanted. Vitamin D is subsequently discovered in lots of meals equivalent to fortified milk, fortified juice, cereal, and fish and is accessible as a complement.

The advisable each day quantity for adults 31 to 70 years outdated is 15 mcg (600 IU) and 20 mcg (800 IU) for adults 71 and older.

Taking 100 mcg (10,000 IU) or extra each day as vitamin D dietary supplements could danger vitamin D toxicity, resulting in abnormally excessive ranges of calcium within the blood. Signs could embody kidney stones, nausea, recurrent vomiting, constipation, extreme thirst, extreme urination, confusion and weight reduction. It has additionally been linked to most cancers danger, coronary heart issues, and an elevated danger of bone fractures.

Analysis could also be accomplished by blood and urine checks for calcium, vitamin D, and phosphorus. For therapy, stopping vitamin D consumption is advisable, however different remedies could also be wanted in extreme circumstances.


Vitamin E

Vitamin E, often known as alpha-tocopherol, is a gaggle of eight associated compounds used as antioxidants to guard the physique’s cells from injury. It’s present in fish, vegetable oil, nuts, seeds, wheat, and leafy greens.

The advisable each day quantity for adults is 15 mg. 

Each day use of 300 mg or extra from dietary supplements could improve the dangers of prostate most cancers in males, stroke, and hemorrhages.


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