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Nutrition: vitamins and minerals
Nutrition: vitamins and minerals

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1.6 Vitamin B

Vitamin B, often called the vitamin B complex, consists of a whole range of different compounds, some of which have similar functions and work together. However, unlike the families of compounds forming vitamins E and K, the B vitamins are sufficiently different from one another to be given individual names or numbers, and to be listed separately on many food labels. Except for vitamin B12, the body can only store limited amounts of B vitamins and because they are all water-soluble, any excess is excreted in the urine. Their water-solubility also means that B vitamins are easily lost in cooking, and they can also be destroyed by light and exposure to air.