Are You Getting Enough Vitamin B12?

Most cases of vitamin B12 deficiency are overlooked or misdiagnosed, according to a study published in the National Health Institute. This is primarily due to misconceptions, like vitamin B12 deficiency can only occur in combination with anemia or that it only affects older people. The best way to find out if you have a B12 deficiency is to get tested by your primary care physician.

Vitamin B12 plays a key role in preventing anemia, which is caused by oversize red blood cells and a lack of folate or B12. The condition commonly leads to ailments such as fatigue and weakness. Furthermore, a lack of vitamin B12 can result in diminished energy and exercise tolerance, together with fatigue and shortness of breath.

Studies have linked vitamin B12 deficiencies with cognitive impairment (decline in mental thought process)including things like brain fog, lack of concentration, poor memory, and even a greater risk of developing Alzheimer's disease. Taking vitamin B12 when you are deficient can be helpful to address memory, mental clarity, overall energy, and depressed mood.

Vitamin B-12 deficiency can cause a “pins and needles” feeling in your hands or legs. This symptom occurs because the vitamin is an important part of the nervous system. Think about the pins and needles feeling you get when your foot is about to fall asleep—if that's happening often, it could be a sign of a vitamin B12 deficiency. Because the vitamin plays an essential role in the nervous system, when it's lacking, it can lead to damage of the protective coating of the nervous system, causing this tingling sensation.

Most vegan and plant-based eaters tend to be vitamin B12 deficient due to their non-consumption of animal products.

Vitamin B12 is not found in fruits. However, most fruits are high in folic acid another B Vitamin that is highly important. Fruit is also high in fiber. High-fiber diets are key to preventing heart disease, gastrointestinal ailments, diabetes, and obesity. 

To get more vitamin B12 in your body, you can take over the counter supplements, or you can incorporate the foods listed below in your diet more often:
  • Nutritional Yeast
  • Salmon
  • Cage-free eggs
  • Fortified Cereal
  • Almonds
  • Lentils

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