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Paba - Para-amino-benzoic Acid

PABA stimulates the growth of healthy intestinal bacteria. That's because it's the intermediary in bacteria synthesizing folate. Some friendly bacteria, including e. coli require PABA. This increases the production of Vitamin B5 (panthothenic acid). Because having a lot of favorable intestinal bacteria helps to bolster our immune systems, it could be that PABA helps us fight off infections.

PABA is a coenzyme involved in the body's production of blood cells and your metabolism of protein. Some believe it's important for healthy skin and hair pigmentation (some say a deficiency of PABA contributes to hair turning gray).

It may help with vitiligo which is white blotches of skin created by a loss of pigmentation.

The medical salt of PABA is used to treat fibrotic skin disorders such as Peyronie's disease. It has also been used to help with irritable bowel syndrome, probably due to its stimulation of friendly bacteria in the intestinal tract.

Natural sources of PABA include liver, brewers yeast, wheat germ, molasses, eggs, yogurt and green leafy vegetables.

As mentioned, it gets added to multivitamin supplements. There seems no need to take a supplement of PABA by itself. It should be taken with the B vitamin family.

PABA should not be taken by peole taking dapsone, methotrexate, sulfamethoxazole, sulfasalazine or trimethoprim.

It's water soluble, so generally any excess will be excreted in your urine, but taking amounts over 8 grams a day for a long period could have side effects. Use common sense.

By: Richard Stooker

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