First, let’s know the great benefits of having vitamin B12
Vitamin B12 plays a key role in many aspects of health and may support bone health, red blood cell formation, energy levels, and mood.
Eating a nutritious, well-rounded diet or taking a supplement can help ensure you’re meeting your needs.
Here are the most health benefits of vitamin B12.
Depression Prevention and Treatment
Vitamin B12 is essential for a wide range of vital body functions, and many studies have confirmed the importance of vitamin B12 for the functioning of the nervous system and the formation of blood cells, as it contributes to the production of neurotransmitters that affect mood, and this may be the reason why some research indicates Vitamin B12 may be beneficial for people with depression.
Mothers with low B12 levels are also more likely to miscarry or give birth prematurely.
Also, If a woman has a vitamin B12 deficiency in the early stages of pregnancy, her child is at an increased risk of neural tube birth defects and low birth weight.
Support Bone Health and Prevent Osteoporosis
Maintaining adequate vitamin B12 levels may support your bone health.
Many studies have shown a link between low vitamin B12 levels and poor bone health and osteoporosis or fracture risk.
Maintaining the health of the nervous system and nerves
Vitamin B12 is one of the most important vitamins necessary for the brain and nervous system to work well, and it has a role in preventing brain atrophy and nerve cell loss, especially for the elderly, thus maintaining memory strength and reducing the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.
Recommended Vitamin B12 Dosage
- From birth to 6 months: 0.4 mcg.
- Infants are 7-12 months old: 0.5 mcg.
- Children 1-3 years old: 0.9 mcg.
- Children 4-8 years old: 1.2 mcg.
- Children 9-13 years old: 1.8 mcg.
- Males and females over the age of 14: 2.4 mcg.
- Pregnant women: 2.6 mcg.
- Breastfeeding women: 2.8 mcg.
Good sources of vitamin B12
Animal liver and kidneys
Organ meats are some of the most nutrient-packed foods.
Liver and kidneys, especially from lamb, are rich in vitamin B12.
Only 100 grams of lamb liver provides an incredible 85.7 micrograms of vitamin B12.
Sardines are a great source of vitamin B12, with one cup providing more than double the daily requirement of vitamin B12.
Beef is an excellent source of vitamin B12, with one slice of beef providing about 200% of the daily requirement for this vitamin.
If you’re looking for higher concentrations of vitamin B12, it’s recommended to choose low-fat cuts of meat. It’s also better to grill or roast it instead of frying to preserve the B12.
This source of vitamin B12 may work well for vegetarians and vegans because it’s synthetically made and not derived from animal sources.
One cup of fortified cereal provides about 4.8 grams of vitamin B12.
Tuna is a commonly consumed fish and a great source of nutrients, including protein, vitamins, and minerals. It contains high concentrations of vitamin B12.
Who is at risk for vitamin B12 deficiency?
Vegetarians: People who consume a vegan or strict vegetarian diet may be at higher risk for vitamin B12 deficiency than people who consume animal products.
The elderly: about 10-30% of the elderly suffer from malabsorption of vitamins, especially vitamin B12.
Taking certain medications for long periods of time also raises your risk for vitamin B12 deficiency by interfering with the normal absorption of the nutrient.
Talk to your doctor about whether you might be at risk for vitamin B12 deficiency. A simple blood test can measure your level of vitamin B12.
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