Vitamin B2 contributes to the quality of the animal’s skin and coat. A deficiency produces changes to the skin around the eyes and the abdomen.
After being confused with vitamin B1, riboflavin was finally discovered in 1937, but it was only in the eighties that a number of diseases were identified with very general symptoms, caused by a deficiency of this vitamin. Riboflavin is water-soluble and heat stable, but sensitive to light.
Riboflavin is the precursor to a group of enzymatic cofactors called flavins. Flavins are used as coenzymes in about 50 enzymes in mammals that are involved in many biochemical reactions including the production of energy from fat, the catabolism of amino acids and the functioning of the cell’s energy plants.
Riboflavin tends not to be stored in the body and thus it is critical to supply this vitamin through the diet. Rich dietary sources include dairy products, organ meats (liver, heart kidney), muscle meats, eggs, green plants and yeast.