PABA - para-aminobenzoic acid - Benefits and uses of PABA

   
Para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA) appears to be a component of folic acid, a member of the B family of vitamins. It plays a role in breaking down and using proteins, and in forming red blood cells. Para-aminobenzoic acid is used in sunscreen preparations since it can help protect the skin against ultra-violet radiation.

Food Sources of PABA

Its best natural sources aremolasses, brewer's yeast, liver, whole grains and eggs. It can also be made by intestinal bacteria. Any excess is stored in the body.PABA Supplements

Functions of PABA

PABA is used to improve the protein used in the body, it relates to red blood cell formation as well as assisting the manufacture of folic acid in the intestines. PABA has been reported to enhance the effects of cortisone. It may also prevent or even reverse accumulation of abnormal fibrous tissue. It has been linked to hair growth as well as reversing the graying of hair, but these results are disappointing. People suffering from vitiligo, over-pigmentation. Para-aminobenzoic acid is used in sunscreen preparations since it can help protect the skin against ultra-violet radiation.

PABA is important for healthy hair and skin, and taking it in supplement form may prevent hair loss by protecting hair follicles. Interestingly, people who have gone gray may experience a return of their natural hair color by taking PABA, but only if they are deficient in B vitamins. Not all studies have shown that this is effective, however.

Dosage

100 mg a day; may be covered by vitamin B complex. Long term antibiotic use may require more PABA from the body, but take note of PABA affecting the ability of sulfa drugs. Although not documented in medical terms, some women having problems falling pregnant claim conceiving after increasing PABA in their diet.

What are the deficiency symptoms of PABA?

When PABA is in short supply fatigue, irritability, nervousness and depression might manifest itself as well as Constipation. Weeping eczema has also been noted in people with PABA deficiency as well as patchy areas on the skin.

Interaction

No interactions between PABA and other nutrients have been reported. However, PABA can interfere with the absorption of sulfa antibiotics and therefore should not be taken when these medications are being used.

Overdosage signs of PABA

High doses (8 g or more daily) of PABA can cause blood sugar to drop and may induce a rash, fever, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea. In rare cases it can cause liver function abnormalities.

PABA is available as a nutritional supplement, but because it is mildly acidic, it can cause stomach irritation when taken in large amounts. The potassium salt of PABA, called Potaba®, which is available by prescription, tends to be better tolerated.








 

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