Vitamin B12 (cobalamin) is known as the energy vitamin. It is a super-power vitamin that plays a key role in how well your brain and nervous system function. Without enough B12 you will suffer from “brain fog” and mood swings!
That got our attention and had us wondering?
- What does vitamin B12 do for us?
- What happens if we don’t get enough?
- What causes Vitamin B12 deficiency?
- How do we get B12 naturally?
- Can we take it as a supplement?
The Top 5 Health Benefits of Vitamin B 12 are:
- It is needed to convert carbohydrates into glucose in the body, thus leading to energy production and a decrease in fatigue and lethargy in the body.
- It helps in healthy regulation of the nervous system, reducing depression, stress, and brain shrinkage.
- It helps maintain a healthy digestive system. Vitamin B12 also protects against heart disease by curbing and improving unhealthy cholesterol levels, protecting against stroke, and high blood pressure.
- It is essential for healthy skin, hair, and nails. It helps in cell reproduction and constant renewal of the skin.
- Vitamin B 12 helps protect against cancers including breast, colon, lung, and prostate cancer.
As if that’s not enough…
- B12 also improves energy by supporting thyroid function and cellular methylation.
- It has a key role in the normal functioning of DNA synthesis and the formation of red blood cells.
- It is involved in the metabolism of every cell of the human body, especially affecting DNA synthesis, fatty acid and amino acid
What happens if we don’t get enough?
Not getting enough vitamin B12 and you will not feel like doing much of anything.
The warning signs of B12 deficiency include:
- Increased risks for Alzheimers/ Dementia
- memory problems
- mood swings
- muscle weakness
- tingling in the extremities
Unfortunately, B12 deficiency is more common than you think. About one in four American adults are deficient in this important nutrient, and nearly half the population has suboptimal blood levels. What you might be thinking of as “I’m just getting older forgetfulness” could very likely just be a lower level of this important brain vitamin.
What Causes a Vitamin B12 Deficiency?
There are two reasons why you may not be getting enough vitamin B12 in your system.
- The most common is a lack of vitamin B12 in your diet.
- The second reason is an inability to absorb it from the food you eat.
Other risk factors for having a Vitamin B12 deficiency are:
- You have had H. pylori bacterial infection or stomach ulcer
- You are over 50
- You eat a vegan or vegetarian diet
- You had weight loss surgery
- You have a leaky gut or digestive disease
- You are taking one of the following types of medications:
- antibiotics, anti-gout, blood pressure, birth control pills, cholesterol lower drugs,
How Do We Get B12 Naturally?
You may not like the sound of this, but the best sources of vitamin B12 are manure, soil and mud. That’s because vitamin B12 can only be synthesized by anaerobic bacteria that breaks down food materials. Lucky for us – we have that same bacteria in our digestive system. The only thing we need to do is feed it the right forms of protein.
The best sources for vitamin B12 are from animal sources of food. B12-rich foods include grass fed beef, salmon, organic-pastured poultry, and eggs.
Make sure that your body is getting enough vitamin B12 by incorporating these foods in your diet: liver, meat, eggs, milk, cheese and some varieties of fish.
Top Foods WE eat to get our B12:
Almond Milk = 8 oz = 3 mcg
Fresh Wild Atlantic Salmon = 3 oz = 2.6 mcg
Fresh Wild Tuna = 3 oz = 8.2 mcg
Cheese Gouda = 1 oz = .43 mcg
Cheese Parmesan = 1 oz = .34 mcg
Free Range Eggs = 1 egg = .6 mcg
Organic Pastured Poultry = 3 oz = .75 mcg
Grass Fed Meat = 3 oz = 1.08 mcg
Can we take it as a supplement?
Yes. It is always best to get it in the natural form found in the foods you eat, but it doesn’t hurt to add a supplement, too. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the average daily U.S. Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) is:
- people age 14 and older, 2.4 mcg;
- for adult and adolescent pregnant females, 2.6 mcg
- and for adult and adolescent lactating females, 2.8mcg.
People over 50 years of age should take vitamin B12 supplement – 25-100 mcg per day with folic acid to help maintain healthy blood and bones.
Best Vitamin B12 Supplements
When buying a vitamin B12 supplement you will want to look for it in the form of methylcobalamin or hydroxycobalamin rather than cyanocobalamin because these forms or more natural and better absorbed by the body.
If you have a vitamin B12 deficiency you would benefit from taking higher amounts and taking it in the injectable form or taking it as sublingual drops or spray. Please use these under a health practitioner’s supervision.
Cauliflower Moment …forgetfulness is not all in your head. Rather it’s all in your vitamins!