Why Is Vitamin B12 Important?
According to the National Institute Of Health, “Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin that is naturally present in some foods, added to others, and available as a dietary supplement and a prescription medication. Vitamin B12 is required for proper red blood cell formation, neurological function, and DNA synthesis. Vitamin B12, bound to protein in food is released by the activity of hydrochloric acid and gastric protease in the stomach.” (NIH, p.1).*
This incredible supplement is important because it provides support for your blood cell formations, as well as your neurological function. Many people do get the recommended amounts of B12, and their lack of can come from the absorption of foods, and or dietary deficiencies.* The exact causes of this deficiency are not known to be outright at this place in time. Many times vegetarians are more susceptible to a Vitamin B12 deficiency because many B12 rich foods derive from animals such as fish, clams, beef, liver, some breakfast cereals, eggs, milk, yogurt, and cheese.
The recommended intake per age is as follows:
- 0-6 months: 0.4 mcg
- 7-12 months: 0.5 mcg
- 1-3 years: 0.9 mcg
- 4-8 years: 1.2 mcg
- 9-13 years: 1.8 mcg
- 14+ years: 2.4 mcg
If you do have a vitamin B12 deficiency, many times it is treated with B12 injections, but higher levels of oral supplements can be used as well. Many times the doctor will determine how well the patient will receive and absorb the B12 before deciding on whether they should be given an injection, or take the supplement orally. Always check with your doctor if you believe you may be Vitamin B12 deficient. There are certain groups of people at a higher risk of being Vitamin B12 deficient over others:
- Older adults
- People who have had gastrointestinal surgery
- People with gastrointestinal disorders
- Patients with Atrophic gastritis
Vitamin B12 Overdose Warning
Vitamin B12 does have the power to interact, and interfere with certain medications, as well as certain medications affecting the Vitamin B12 levels in your body. See this list below as provided by the National Health Institute:
- Proton pump inhibitors
- H2 receptor antagonists
Many overdoses are caused by injections or oral intake of supplementation, rather than by consuming foods rich with Vitamin B12. Some of the side effects from a Vitamin B12 overdose is sensitive skin that becomes extremely itchy and irritated, frequent headaches, irregular heartbeats, numbness, and the most serious of them all is the onset of cancer. Because this vitamin helps body with cell division, it has a hard time distinguishing the bad cells from the good cells. As stated by New Health Guide, “If you are undergoing pernicious anemia, an overdose of this vitamin can lead to leukemia.” (NHG, p.1).*
Which Vitamin B12 Supplements Work?
We are not blind to the fact that there are hundreds of different supplements thrown in our faces each day. Finding the right supplement that is safe for you and affordable can be a somewhat difficult task to accomplish. All of the supplements on the market work to a point, but there are others that work more efficiently in your body! Below you will find a list of five supplements that have effective ingredients, in the proper dosage amount.
Top 5 Vitamin B12 Supplements
Natrol Vitamin B12 Supplement: This supplement is meant to support the health of the nervous system, blood cells, and energy levels. This particular product is 100% vegetarian based, and does not contain any milk,
eggs, fish, shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, soybeans, yeast, or artificial flavoring. In this bottle comes 100
capsules with 5,000 mcg per capsule. On Amazon.com you will pay $6.27 plus shipping for this item. These capsules are not hard to swallow, as they have a nice strawberry flavor for taste. To purchasethis Natrol Vitamin B12 supplement on Amazon.com click here.
Now Foods Vitamin B12 Supplement: This particular brand of Vitmain B12 supplement is meant to help support your nervous system, sustain energy, and promote the health of your blood cells.* In one bottle, there will be 100 capsules with 2,000 mcg of B12 in each supplement. The bottle will cost $7.54 plus shipping on Amazon.com. Other ingredients in the capsules are fructose, cellulose, sorbitol, citric acid, natural cherry flavor, and Soy lecithin. To purchase this supplement off of Amazon.com click here.
Zenwise Health Vitamin B12 Supplement: This supplement promotes the support of your body’s ability to convert foods into cellular energy. It also helps the support of your metabolic function with the efficient ability to help convert proteins, fats, and carbs into energy. This particular bottle comes with 160 tablets that are meant to be taken once a day with each meal. There is 1,000 mcg per pill, and the cost on Amazon.com is $14.20 plus shipping. All bottles and supplements are manufactured in the USA at an FDA approved facility.* The product is certified gluten free with no yeast or starch, and the remaining amount of ingredients are: Diacalcium phosphate, Microcystalline Cellulose, Stearic Acid, Magnesium Stearate, Croscarmellose Sodium, and. Silicon Dioxide. To purchase this product on Amazon.com click here.
Nature Made Vitamin B12 Supplement: This product promotes energy production, and a healthy nervous system. In each tablet, there are 1,000 mcg and 160 tablets per bottle. You can purchase this bottle on Amazon.com for $16.99 plus shipping and handling. There is no yeast, starch, or gluten present in this bottle of Vitamin B12, and the other ingredients are Dibasic Calcium Phosphate, Stearic Acid, Cellulose Gel, Magnesium Stearate, Cyanocobalim, and Croscarmellose Sodium.* To purchase Nature Made’s Vitamin B12 supplement off of Amazon.com click here.
Vitafusion Energy B12 Gummy Vitamins Supplement: This supplement comes in the form of raspberry gummies, which is more doable for people who do not like to take pills. It promotes increased energy and a stronger metabolism. In each bottle there are 250 gummies, and they come with 500 mcg per serving. Per the instructions on the bottle, you are to take 2 gummies per day with a meal. They are processed in a facility that contains eggs, shellfish, soy, and tree nuts. Other ingredients are: glucose syrup, sucrose, water, gelatin, less than 2% beeswax, citric acid, coconut oil, lactic acid, and natural flavor. To purchase VitaFusion B12 Gummies on Amazon.com click here
Office of Dietary Supplements – Vitamin B12. (n.d.). Retrieved April 14, 2016, from https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminB12-HealthProfessional/#h3
New Health Guide. (n.d.). Retrieved April 14, 2016, from http://www.newhealthguide.org/Vitamin-B12-Overdose.html