Vitamin B12 Deficiency Symptoms

Vitamin B 12 or cobalamin, is one of the B vitamins, with an important role in the normal functioning of the brain and nervous system, and for the formation of the blood. Vitamin B 12 has also a significant role in the metabolism of every cell in the human body, particularly in the synthesis and control of DNA, fatty acids and energy production. This Vitamin B complex is considered as the largest and most complex vitamin and can be produced scientifically through bacterial production.

Vitamin B12 has numerous significant roles in the human body. It binds with folate to synthesize the human’s genetic material. It improves the concentration of important body acids such as amino acids to help decrease risk of heart disease, and is important to the synthesis of Red Blood Cells (RBC) that carry oxygen through the bloodstream.

However, Vitamin B12 deficiency is on the rise. Deficiency of this important vitamin can have different causes. Usually, it happens to people with digestive systems not absorptive of the foods they eat. Causes include:

  • Too much alcohol consumption
  • Immunity disorders such as Lupus and Graves disease
  • Deficiency of protein in the stomach necessary to absorb Vitamin B 12.
  • Gastritis (contraction of stomach lining)
  • Stomach surgery
  • Diseases of the small intestine such as Crohn’s disease or parasite worms

Vegetarians and vegans are highly vulnerable to Vitamin B12 Deficiency since the best food sources of this vitamin are meat and other animal products. Strict vegans or those who do not consume or use any product from animals are very vulnerable. Ova-vegetarians who consume eggs and dairy products are also vulnerable. Infants born to vegan mothers may also suffer from Vitamin B12 deficiency. This could lead to critical damage to the infant’s nervous system. Vegetarian or vegan mothers should monitor the cobalamin levels of their babies.

Vitamin B12 Deficiency Symptoms

More often than not, Vitamin B12 deficiency could result to cobalamin deficiency anemia with symptoms such as:

  • Weakness
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Paleness
  • Tongue ache
  • Gingivitis
  • Stomach ache and notable weight loss
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation

The above symptoms should not be taken for granted since if the Vitamin B12 deficiency is not treated, it can pose risk and damage to the nervous system. Chronic symptoms include:

  • Stings or numbing of fingers and toes
  • Excess Sweating
  • Mood swings
  • Heavy depression
  • Memory loss
  • Dementia

 

Medication for Vitamin B12 Deficiency

The medical treatment for Vitamin B12 depends on the root and symptoms. If stomach surgery or stomach thinning is the cause, supplementary injection or tablet Vitamin B12 is necessary. Some patients are recommended to take B12 supplements for the rest of their lives. Vegans and vegetarians are also advised to consider changing their eating habits and dietary plans or through organic B12 supplements.

If you experience the aforementioned symptoms of Vitamin B12 deficiency, consult your doctor immediately for medical diagnosis such as blood tests to determine your body’s level of Vitamin B12.

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