Tired all the time?
Need a boost?
I’ve got just the thing:
– It’s an important nutrient
– It’s my favourite B-vitamin
– It’s other name is “cobalamin”
If you guessed vitamin B12, you’re absolutely correct! Vitamin B12 (aka cobalamin) is a water-soluble vitamin that offers incredible benefits. I think vitamin B12 should be named the “feel good” vitamin because of how important it is for our mood, energy levels, brain function, and more! Here is a list of some of the important functions of vitamin B12:
Supports Brain Health:
– Low B12 can cause anxiety, depression, memory issues, poor focus, and insomnia.
– B12 helps make neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine.
Maintains Neurological Health:
– Low B12 can cause neurological symptoms such as numbness, pain, and tingling.
Makes Red Blood Cells:
– B12 deficiency can cause anemia – a lowered ability to produce red blood cells.
– Our mitochondria need vitamin B12 to produce energy.
Unfortunately, it’s very common for people to have low or “sub-optimal” B12 levels. Many people have challenges absorbing this vitamin or do not get enough B12 in their diet. If you’d like to get more of this amazing vitamin from your diet, the top food sources of B12 are listed below. As you can see, if you follow a vegan or vegetarian diet, you will likely be deficient in vitamin B12.
– Milk, Yogurt, and Cheese (especially Swiss cheese)
– Shellfish (especially clams)
– Fish (especially tuna, trout, and salmon)
– Meats (especially beef and organ meats)
I get asked all the time, “how do I know if I need to supplement with vitamin B12?”. If any of the following apply to you, you will benefit from increasing your vitamin B12 intake:
1) If you’re following a vegan or vegetarian diet.
2) If you have impaired nutrient absorption or a digestive condition (Crohn’s, Ulcerative Colitis, Celiac Disease, IBS, SIBO). In this case, you would benefit most from an intramuscular injection or intravenous vitamin B12 to by-pass the digestive tract.
3) If you have anemia (low levels of hemoglobin or red blood cells).
4) If your blood test results indicate a vitamin B12 deficiency.
5) If you take certain medications that deplete your vitamin B12 levels.
6) If you are an older adult (our ability to absorb B12 decreases with age).
For vitamin B12 lab testing, a “normal” result does not mean you have “optimal” B12 levels. If we determine that your B12 are “low-normal” or “sub-optimal”, you would benefit from taking extra vitamin B12. Even if your results appear to be “optimal”, but you are still experiencing fatigue, exhaustion, poor focus, foggy-headedness, anxiety, depression, poor memory, chronic stress, or poor sleep, you will benefit most from intramuscular injections of vitamin B12.
For patients that require extra vitamin B12 supplementation, we offer several options to effectively increase your B12 levels:
– These come in tablet, capsule, liquid, or lozenge form. A lozenge (dissolved under the tongue) is the most effective oral B12 supplement.
– B12 injections are the quickest and most effective way to improve your symptoms, boost energy, and replete your vitamin B12 levels. For vitamin B12 injections, we select the type and dosage that suits each patient best.
Intravenous Vitamins (with B12):
– For intravenous vitamin therapy, B12 is given into a vein along with several other vitamins and minerals. This treatment takes a little longer, but it allows us to quickly replenish many vitamin and mineral levels all at the same time.
If you would like to try a vitamin B12 injection or intravenous vitamin therapy to boost your energy, elevate your mood, or rev up your metabolism, call or email our naturopathic clinic to set up an appointment.
Yours in health,
Dr. Michael Morsillo, H.B.Sc., N.D.
Newmarket Naturopathic Doctor
16655 Yonge Street, Newmarket, ON
905-898-1844 ext. 135