Every nutrient in our bodies has special functions and requirements. Vitamin B12, aka cobalamin, is the perfect example of such an essential nutrient.
We need vitamin B12 to function properly, but its natural production isn’t supported by our bodies. That’s when we have to deal with vitamin B12 deficiency.
Find out what are risks and symptoms, and learn how to avoid or treat them.
Here is what you need to know.
Vitamin B12 Deficiency 101
Vitamin B12 deficiency is a major issue nowadays and most people don’t know how to treat it. As previously mentioned, our bodies don’t produce this vitamin naturally, so we need special diets and supplements.
Pregnant women, for example, are sometimes advised to be extra careful about their vitamin B12 levels. A deficiency could lead to hampered growth in the baby.
Many risk factors can trigger a vitamin B12 deficiency, including:
- atrophic gastritis;
- immune system disorders;
- alcohol misuse;
- pernicious anemia;
- drug interactions;
- Crohn’s disease.
As for the common symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency, they are:
- Vision loss;
- Tingling or numbness in muscles;
- Pale skin;
- Loss of appetite;
- Deteriorated motor skills;
- Smooth tongue;
- Digestion issues;
- Shortness of breath;
- Impaired cognitive function.
How to Avoid or Treat Vitamin B12 Deficiency
Remember that if you experience one of the above-mentioned symptoms you have to go to a doctor. Taking any vitamin B12 supplements or following a certain diet might not have the expected effects for every individual.
However, if you want to improve your diet plan, you might as well try the following foods:
- Eggs: a “superfood” option rich in vitamin B12 that your body really needs; eat whole eggs as yolks contain more vitamin B12 content;
- Organ meats: liver and kidneys are highly nutritious and a high source of vitamin B12; keep in mind that the intake of organ meats should be moderate – excessive consumption could be harmful;
- Salmon: salmon is probably the best B vitamins and omega-3 source; it can help you reach your daily vitamin B12 requirements quickly;
- Milk: dairy products are also recommended to boost your vitamin B12 intake; be careful how much dairy products you consume as they can trigger lactose intolerance.
- Tuna: only 100g of cooked tuna can offer up to 10.9 mcg of vitamin B12; how great it’s this?