Vitamin B2 - Riboflavin

Riboflavin, also known as vitamin B2, is found in small amounts in many foods. Good sources include milk, eggs, fortified breakfast cereals, rice and mushrooms.

UV light can destroy riboflavin, so ideally these foods should be kept out of direct sunlight.

How much do I need?

Riboflavin is water-soluble, which means you need it in your diet every day because it can't be stored in the body.

You should be able to get all the riboflavin you need from your daily diet. This is approximately:

  • 1.3 mg a day for men
  • 1.1 mg a day for women

What does it do?

Riboflavin has a number of important functions. For example it:

  • helps keep skin, eyes, the nervous system and mucous membranes healthy
  • helps produce steroids and red blood cells
  • may help the body absorb iron from the food we eat

What happens if I take too much?

There isn't enough evidence to know what the effects might be of taking high doses of riboflavin supplements each day.

What is our advice?

You should be able to get all the riboflavin you need by eating a varied and balanced diet. But if you decide to take supplements it's a good idea not to take too much because this might be harmful.

Taking 40 mg or less of riboflavin supplements a day is unlikely to cause any harm.