Vitamin B12 Deficiencies Increasing

Vitamin B12 Deficiencies Increasing

It seems every second person these days is receiving vitamin B12 shots. I wonder what is changing within our lifestyles and diet to be causing this…? Neurological signs of vitamin B12 deficiency include: Numbness and tingling of the hands and feet, decreased sensation, difficulties walking, memory loss, depression, and general weakness and fatigue.

Most cases of vitamin B12 deficiency result from an inability to absorb the vitamin due to loss of intrinsic factor in the stomach (which is needed for B12 absorption), loss of gastric acid or protein-digesting enzymes.

There are many well documented factors that can cause this malabsorption, such as gastric resection surgery including stomach banding, gastritis, and the use of medications that suppress acid secretion in the stomach.

Some B12 rich foods include: Lean beef mince and steak, Kangaroo, eggs, venison, yeast, sardines, and turkey.

Vitamin B12 is produced by bacteria in the large intestines of animals, if the gut bacteria (biota) are present in the right concentrations and types. Plant foods (legumes, grains, nuts, vegetables) are generally not a source of vitamin B12. For this reason, B12 is a nutrient of concern for vegetarians and particularly for vegans who choose an entirely plant-based diet. Vegetarians who eat eggs and dairy (cheese, yoghurt, milk) can generally obtain adequate amounts.

If you are a vegetarian or vegan there are vegan B12 supplements available to ensure you do not develop a deficiency. Meat eaters can still become B12 deficient if they have an unbalanced diet or if they are highly stressed as their body will require more B12 in that situation. Medications also have an impact on how well B12 is absorbed by the body including: antibiotics, the pill, and statins. Alcohol, smoking, high coffee, and sugar consumption also have a critical impact on how well B12 is absorbed.

If you have been feeling flat looking at your diet will be the most beneficial thing you can do. Perhaps you are eating or drinking to many things that are inhibiting your B12 absorption.

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