Six Surprising Facts You Should Know About Vitamin B12 Deficiency
A recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association revealed that more than half of Americans take some form of dietary supplement for their overall health. Our friends and family taking multivitamins, fish oils and other vitamin supplements is nothing new and something we might all consider. But just as different car models require specific grades of fuel for maximum performance, individuals also need different levels of vitamins and nutrients to maximize their personal health.
However, too few of us recognize a key vitamin we may be lacking—B12. Vitamin B12 deficiency has become a silent epidemic. Some of the most commonly mentioned side effects include fatigue, lack of energy, sluggishness, and dizziness. While there is a bucket full of other causes we might blame for such symptoms—such as lack of sleep, depression or even more serious health risks, such as anemia—the scary truth is that a deficiency in vitamin B12 could ultimately be behind many if not all of these issues I’ve mentioned here.
As an example, a person low on red blood cells may have pernicious anemia, a B12 deficiency anemias caused by an inability to absorb the vitamin B12 needed for your body to make those healthy red blood cells. Therefore, there may be more serious effects of vitamin B12 deficiency to look into than just the fatigue and sluggishness commonly associated with low B12, levels, for a lack of red blood cells itself could also cause those same effects.
As a vitamin B12 deficiency can manifest in a multitude of different ways, here are some important facts that may surprise you about the importance of Vitamin B12 for your body:
There are not a lot of natural B12-rich food sources – Dairy products, eggs, meat, poultry, and fish provide the richest amounts of B12. There are other foods, like some cereals, that are enriched with B12. But overall, there are a limited variety of options for adequate B12 consumption, which leads us to the next important fact.