A woman discussing supplements with a pharmacist.

This is a reader-friendly overview of Riboflavin. For more information, see our well being qualified point sheet on Riboflavin.

What is riboflavin and what does it do?

Riboflavin (also referred to as vitamin B2) is critical for the development, advancement, and operate of the cells in your overall body. It also aids turn the food you consume into the electricity you want.

How a great deal riboflavin do I want?

The amount of riboflavin you want relies upon on your age and sex. Normal day-to-day advised quantities are mentioned down below in milligrams (mg).

Lifetime Stage Encouraged Amount of money
Start to 6 months .3 mg
Infants 7–12 months .four mg
Youngsters 1–3 several years .five mg
Youngsters 4–8 several years .6 mg
Youngsters 9–13 several years .9 mg
Teenager boys 14–18 several years 1.3 mg
Teenager women 14–18 several years 1. mg
Males 1.3 mg
Gals 1.1 mg
Expecting teenagers and girls 1.four mg
Breastfeeding teenagers and girls 1.6 mg


What foodstuff present riboflavin?

Riboflavin is observed normally in some foodstuff and is added to many fortified foodstuff. You can get advised quantities of riboflavin by having a wide variety of foodstuff, including the subsequent:

  • Eggs, organ meats (this kind of as kidneys and liver), lean meats, and minimal-unwanted fat milk
  • Environmentally friendly veggies (this kind of as asparagus, broccoli, and spinach)
  • Fortified cereals, bread, and grain solutions

What kinds of riboflavin dietary nutritional supplements are accessible?

Riboflavin is observed in multivitamin/multimineral nutritional supplements, in B-advanced dietary nutritional supplements, and in nutritional supplements made up of only riboflavin. Some nutritional supplements have a great deal more than the advised quantities of riboflavin, but your overall body just can’t absorb more than about 27 mg at a time.

Am I receiving adequate riboflavin?

Most folks in the United States get adequate riboflavin from the foodstuff they consume and deficiencies are quite scarce. Having said that, specific teams of folks are more most likely than some others to have difficulties receiving adequate riboflavin:

  • Athletes who are vegetarians (specifically demanding vegetarians who stay away from dairy foodstuff and eggs)
  • Expecting girls and breastfeeding girls and their infants
  • Persons who are vegan
  • Persons who do not consume dairy foodstuff
  • Persons with a genetic dysfunction referred to as riboflavin transporter deficiency. This dysfunction helps prevent the overall body from correctly absorbing and using riboflavin, triggering riboflavin deficiency

What takes place if I really don’t get adequate riboflavin?

You can acquire riboflavin deficiency if you never get adequate riboflavin in the foodstuff you consume, or if you have specific diseases or hormone ailments.

Riboflavin deficiency can lead to skin ailments, sores at the corners of your mouth, swollen and cracked lips, hair loss, sore throat, liver ailments, and challenges with your reproductive and nervous devices.

Extreme, extensive-time period riboflavin deficiency causes a scarcity of crimson blood cells (anemia), which tends to make you feel weak and weary. It also causes clouding of the lens in your eyes (cataracts), which influences your vision.

What is an effect of riboflavin nutritional supplements on well being?

Experts are studying riboflavin to superior have an understanding of how it influences well being. Here is an case in point of what this study has proven.

Migraine headache

Some scientific studies display that riboflavin nutritional supplements could support avoid migraine headaches, but other scientific studies do not. Riboflavin nutritional supplements generally have quite handful of side results, so some healthcare specialists propose hoping riboflavin, beneath the steering of a health care service provider, for stopping migraines.

Can riboflavin be harmful?

Riboflavin has not been proven to lead to any hurt.

Does riboflavin interact with prescription drugs or other dietary nutritional supplements?

Riboflavin is not identified to interact with any prescription drugs. But it is constantly critical to notify your medical doctor, pharmacist, and other health care vendors about any dietary nutritional supplements and prescription or in excess of-the-counter medicines you take. They can notify you if the dietary nutritional supplements could interact with your medicines or if the medicines could interfere with how your overall body absorbs, utilizes, or breaks down nutrients.

Riboflavin and healthful having

Persons should get most of their nutrients from food and drinks, in accordance to the federal government’s Dietary Rules for People in america. Meals contain vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber, and other components that benefit well being. In some scenarios, fortified foodstuff and dietary nutritional supplements are useful when it is not possible to meet wants for 1 or more nutrients (e.g., in the course of particular lifetime stages this kind of as being pregnant). For more details about setting up a wholesome dietary pattern, see the Dietary Rules for People in americaexternal link disclaimer and the U.S. Division of Agriculture’s MyPlate.external link disclaimer

In which can I obtain out more about riboflavin?

  • For general details on riboflavin:
  • For more details on food sources of riboflavin:
  • For more information on selecting dietary nutritional supplements:
  • For details about setting up a wholesome dietary pattern:


This point sheet by the Business office of Dietary Dietary supplements (ODS) delivers details that should not take the spot of healthcare information. We really encourage you to talk to your health care vendors (medical doctor, registered dietitian, pharmacist, and so forth.) about your desire in, issues about, or use of dietary nutritional supplements and what may possibly be best for your in general well being. Any mention in this publication of a particular solution or support, or suggestion from an organization or qualified culture, does not characterize an endorsement by ODS of that solution, support, or pro information.

Up to date: March 22, 2021 Historical past of improvements to this point sheet