Tue. Oct 26th, 2021

By Dr Sam Bailey – Is your Vitamin B12 level too low? Should you take Vitamin B12 supplements?

Is your Vitamin B12 level too low? Should you take Vitamin B12 supplements?

#vitaminb12 #vitaminb12dosage

- Foods high in Vitamin B12:
- Liver & Kidneys (Beef, Lamb, Pork)
- Animal Meat eg Beef, Lamb
- Seafood – Mackerel, Clams, Crab, Tuna, Oysters, Octopus, Herring, Mussels, Salmon
- Milk
- Milk Products, eg cheese, full fat yoghurt
- Eggs
- Vitamin B12 Fortified Foods – eg cereals, nutritional yeast

Vitamin B12 Deficiency Symptoms:

• Disrupted energy metabolism (chronic fatigue and tiredness, difficulty concentrating, muscle weakness)
• Nerve problems (pain, numbness & tingling of the hands and feet, paralysis, coordination problems, memory disorders)
• Anaemia (poor performance, immunodeficiency)
• Disruptions to the metabolism of hormones and neurotransmitters (depression, confusion, poor memory, dementia, difficult maintaining balance, sleep disorders)
• Digestive disorders (constipation, diarrhoea, loss of appetite, weight loss)
• Inflammation (mouth, tongue, stomach and intestines soreness)

B12 Deficiency Causes:

1. Deficient Supply – not getting enough B12 from food. Common in vegans & in some vegetarians.
2. Increased Requirement – Pregnancy/lactation, Stress, Infections.
3. Malabsorption – Pernicious Anaemia, previous stomach surgery (weight loss surgery), Inflammation in/damage to gastrointestinal tract, Gastritis, Crohn’s disease, Coeliac Disease, Helicobacter pylori infection, Alcoholism, Tapeworm infection, Medications eg Metformin, Colchicine, Neomycin, Carbamazepine, Grave’s Disease or Lupus.
4. Long term meds that affect stomach acid production eg Esomeprazole, lansoprazole, omeprazole, pantoprazole, rabeprazole, Cometidine, Famotidine, Ranitidine will worsen Vitamin B12 deficiency.

Natural Forms of B12:


Synthetic Form of B12: Cyanocobalamin


NORVIT Trial: Bønaa KH, Njølstad I, Ueland PM, Schirmer H, Tverdal A, Steigen T, et al. Homocysteine lowering and cardiovascular events after acute myocardial infarction. N Engl J Med 2006;354:1578-88. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16531614/

HOPE Trial: Lonn E, Yusuf S, Arnold MJ, Sheridan P, Pogue J, Micks M, et al. Homocysteine lowering with folic acid and B vitamins in vascular disease. N Engl J Med. 2006;354:1567-77. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16531613/

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