Vitamin supplements guide   Vitamins & health supplements guide

Inositol (vitamin Bh) review
Basics: a type of sugar related to glucose, an essential eukaryotic metabolite, exists as the fiber component phytic acid.
Benefits: necessary for proper function of nerves, brain, and muscles in the body, used in the treatment of liver problems, depression, panic disorder, and diabetes.
Dosage: no recommended daily allowance for inositol, normal human dietary intake is about 1 gram per day.
Sources: wheat germ, brewer's yeast, bananas, liver, brown rice, oak flakes, nuts, unrefined molasses, vegetables, and raisins.
Deficiency: deficiency symptoms includes eczema, hair loss, constipation, and abnormalities of the eyes and raised cholesterol.
Editor's choice: Inositol Powder
Required for the formation of cell membrane, inositol is vital to healthy cell membranes, especially the specialized cells in the brain, bone marrow, eyes and intestines. Inositol is an essential component of the phospholipids that make up cellular membranes, and so is found in virtually every cell in the body. Click here for more information.

Inositol deficiency

Inositol is a water-soluble vitamin that is important for forming cell membranes and other structures in the body. Inositol is a
simple carbohydrate involved in the glucuronic acid and pentose phosphate pathways that are responsible for products such as glucose, glucuronolactone and water. Inositol functions closely with choline. It is not recognized as a vitamin as the body and intestinal bacteria can make it in limited quantities, and no deficiency states have been reported. Inositol is found in the brain, nerves, muscles, bones, reproductive organs, stomach, kidney, spleen, liver and heart. It is a major component of lecithin.

An inositol deficiency could be a contributing cause of abnormal platelet aggregation, alcoholism, heart disease (along with B-vitamin deficiencies), liver disease, memory loss, panic/anxiety attacks, and tardive dyskinesia. Pharmaceutical drugs that can cause an inositol deficiency include aminoglycosides, cephalosporins, chlortetracycline, demeclocycline, doxycycline, fluoroquinolones, macrolides, minocycline, oxytetracycline, penicillins, sulfonamides, tetracyclines and trimethoprim. If the inositol intake is not sufficient, symptoms such as eczema, hair loss, constipation, and abnormalities of the eyes and raised cholesterol may be observed. People with diabetes have increased excretion and may benefit from inositol supplementation. People with diabetes experience much greater losses of inositol than other people, which may be caused by an increase in the amount of glucose that appears in the urine in diabetes.