Posted by Oze Parrot on March 30th, 2006
Vitamin B12, also called Cobalamin, helps maintain healthy Nerve cells and red Blood cells. In collaboration with Vitamins B6 and B9, Cobalamin helps support a number of bodily functions including our genetic makeup.
Deficiencies of Vitamin B12 will result in anemia, lethargy, loss of appetite, constipation, and weight loss. Other symptoms include, swelling of the tongue, some memory loss, confusion and some degree of dementia.
People that are at most risk of suffering a Vitamin B12 deficiency are those persons who have a gastrointestinal problem that limits the stomachs ability to soak up vitamin B12.
People that practice veganism and eat no meat or dairy products whatsoever will have a very limited dietary access to Vitamin B12 and should take supplements.
Pregnant women and lactating mothers are at risk of having a deficiency of Vitamin B12 and may need to take supplements.
People that have had parts of their stomach or intestines removed because of accident or disease such as crohn’s disease, may not have the ability to absorb B12 from their food. In such cases, a Vitamin B12 supplement is required.
Elderly folk may lose the natural ability to absorb Cobalamin from their food, for a number of reasons, this ultimately leads to neuropsychiatric disorders. If a B12 deficiency is detected by a doctor then, possibly, he will recommend a Cobalamin fortified diet or a Vitamin B12 supplement.
Unlike most other water soluble vitamins, Cobalamin is not disposed of on a daily basis, by the body. In fact the body gathers Vitamin B12 which is stored in the liver and kidneys. Consequently, a Vitamin deficiency is not noticeable for several years after the B12 intake has ceased.
Foods that are sources of vitamin B12 are liver, kidneys, eggs, cheese, shellfish, tuna, salmon and fortified breakfast cereals.
Apart from supplements, the only vegan source of B12 is the Chinese herb Dang Gui or female ginseng, which the Chinese use for treating anemia.
Because Vitamin B12 has a very low toxic level, there have been no known cases of people suffering any ill effects from an excessive intake of Vitamin B12.
For further information visit our websites at: Vitamin Hunter
Technorati Tag: Vitamins and Minerals