Between the 8 B vitamins, vitamin B-12 is especially important to maintain healthy nerve cells as well as in the production of DNA and RNA, the genetic material in the body.
It helps the body to convert carbohydrates into glucose, which is used to produce energy and also helps the body to assimilate fats and protein.
B complex vitamins are essential for healthy skin, hair, eyes and liver and also help for a proper function of the nervous system.
Together with vitamin B-9 (folate/folic acid) vitamin B-12 helps to produce red blood cells and iron work better in the bodily system. B-9 and B-12 together produce S-adenosylmethionine (SAMe), important for immune function and a balanced mood.
As all B vitamins, B-12 is water soluble; it´s not stored by the body and has to be added with the nutrition.
Though it is rare for children to have vitamin B-12 deficiency, older people and especially vegans and vegetarians often experience a lack of B-12. This can be due to their diet or when they have less stomach acid, which is needed to absorb vitamin B-12.
People with HIV, Crohn disease, diabetes, weight loss surgery, eating disorders and pancreatic disease, to mention but a few, are under high risk to experience B-12 deficiency.
Typical symptoms of a lack of B-12 can be:
- Short breath
- Tingling fingers and toes
Severe deficiency of B12 can cause including serious diseases and nerve damage.
You can find B-12 only in animal products, especially in
- Dairy products
- Liver and kidney
Taking in mind its effect on the body, to take vitamin B-12 supplements have shown to be supportive in cases of:
- age-related macular degeneration (AMD)
- coronary artery disease
- breast cancer
- male infertility
Advertencia: This short introduction to vitamin B-12 does not substitute the consultation of a professional therapist or physician in case of disease and any mentioned symptoms; this essay is only for informative purpose.
By Nabila G. Welk, therapist, nutritionist, spiritual guide and coach.
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