Main Benefits of Vitamin B12
- Increases Energy
- Boosts Immune System
- Improves Mental and Mood Alertness
- Increases Metabolism and Assists in Weight Management
- Combats Stress and Irritability
What are the types of Vitamin B12?
Methylcobalamin – This is the most usable/natural and active form in the human body. It converts homocysteine into methionine, which helps protect the cardiovascular system. Methylcobalamin also offers overall protection to the nervous system. This B-12 form can also cross the blood-brain barrier (a highly selective permeability barrier that separates the circulating blood from the brain extracellular fluid) – without assistance–to protect brain cells. It contributes essential methyl groups needed for detoxification and to start the body’s biochemical reactions.
Methylcobalamin is what we use primarily at Cascade Health Clinic.
Cyanocobalamin – Cyanocobalamin is the synthetic version of vitamin B12 and is created in a lab, which makes it the least expensive supplement option. It offers the most stable form of B12, although it does so through the presence of a cyanide molecule. While the amount of cyanide is not dangerous, it does require the body to expend energy by taking a methyl group and forcing the liver to dispose of the cyanide molecule.
Why are Injections Better than Pills?
B-12 injections demonstrate more rapid results than oral pills.
B-12 injections are ordinarily administered intramuscularly, meaning the injection is administered into a muscle, and around 10 percent is absorbed directly into the body. This makes it an effective means of rapid replacement.
Symptoms of Vitamin B12 Deficiency
- Tiredness and weakness
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Loss of balance
- Numbness and tingling in the hands and feet
- Memory loss
Foods that Contain Vitamin B12
|Dietary sources of Vitamin B12|
|Vitamin B12 Food||Serving size||B12 (mcg)|
|Fortified cereal||1 cup||6|
|Tuna, canned||3 ounces||2.5|
|Nonfat plain Greek yogurt||6 ounces||1.3|
|Low-fat milk||1 cup||1.2|
|Chicken breast||3 ounces||0.3|
|Source: National Institutes of Health.|
How Much Vitamin B12 do I Need?
|Life Stage||Recommended Amount|
|Birth to 6 months||0.4 mcg|
|Infants 7 to 12 months||0.5 mcg|
|Children 1 to 3 years||0.9 mcg|
|Children 4 to 8 years:||1.2 mcg|
|Children 9 to 13 years||1.8 mcg|
|Teens 14 to 18 years||2.4 mcg|
|Pregnant teens and women||2.6 mcg|
|Breastfeeding teens and women||2.8 mcg|
|Source: National Institute of Health|
Should I Have my Vitamin B12 Levels Tested?
It’s always wise to know your vitamin B12 levels regardless. And it’s actually a very simple and easy test to know exactly where your Vitamin B12 level is (much like Vitamin D) and we recommend that you get testing done several times throughout the year to monitor it. If you would like to schedule your Vitamin B12 testing, we can help you determine if you are deficient and set a custom tailored treatment plan to address it.