Supply situation

National nutrition surveys in European countries provide an indication of current intake of some B vitamins.

In Germany, men generally meet national recommendations for intake of B vitamins. However, a significant number of women do not meet intake requirements for vitamin B1 (thiamin) and vitamin B2 (riboflavin) (15).

In Austria, by contrast, certain population groups were shown to be deficient in vitamin B1 (thiamin), vitamin B2 (riboflavin) and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine). Women under the age of 25 and aged between 35 and 45 did not meet requirements for B1, B2 and B6. Among Austrian men, only those aged 46–55 years met requirements for B2 and insufficient intake of B6 was demonstrated for those aged between 36 and 45 and over 56 (16).

Data from large U.S. dietary surveys indicate that the average intake of vitamin B2 (riboflavin) for men is about 2 mg/day and for women is about 1.5 mg/day; both intakes are well above the RDA. Intake levels were similar for a population of elderly men and women (1).

A recent study of people aged between 65 and 90 and living independently found that almost 25% consumed less than the recommended vitamin B2 (riboflavin) intake, and 10% had biochemical evidence of deficiency (17).

People who are very physically active (e.g., athletes, laborers) may have a slightly increased vitamin B2 (riboflavin) requirement. However, riboflavin supplementation has not generally been found to increase exercise tolerance or performance (18).

Authored by Dr Peter Engel in 2010, reviewed by Hasan Mohajeri on 01.09.2017