Vitamin B12 Deficiency Symptoms

Vitamin B12 Deficiency Symptoms - For a long time vitamin B12 languished in the medical literature as the vitamin that cures anemia. Since vitamin B12 was only associated with anemia, doctors and nutrition experts alike tend to ignore vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms.

Recently, however, new information vitamin B12 recommends it as a supplement for healthy people. These new studies show that getting enough B12:


  • Works with folic acid and vitamin B6 to protect the heart
  • Regenerates cells throughout the body
  • Protects against senile dementia and
  • Boosts immune function

The latest scientific information on vitamin B12 indicates that it is also essential for maintaining the chemical reactions that create SAM-e, repair DNA, and prevent cancer. But what are the vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms that tell you that you need to start taking supplements?

Let's begin by looking at the heart.

It's well known that vitamin B12 is essential in the kinds of chemical reactions that "turn on" detoxification mechanisms. These methylation reactions are especially important for detoxifying heavy metals such as arsenic, antimony, and lead.

When vitamin B 12 goes through its own methylation reaction it becomes methylcobalamin. This form of B12 is superior to other forms of the item in that it does not have to be activated before it starts its work.

This versatile vitamin assists circulatory lowering concentrations of homocysteine. Homocysteine is a naturally occurring amino acid.

By itself, homocysteine isn't bad. It's even part of the process the body uses to make its own SAM-e. But when homocysteine levels build up in the bloodstream, they interfere with the methylation reactions that remove toxic levels of homocysteine.

High homocysteine levels hurt the heart. Some scientists even believe that high homocysteine levels may be even more damaging than high cholesterol levels.

Taking vitamin B12 protects your heart. By helping the arteries produce an enzyme with the tongue-twisting name methylenetetrahydrofolatereductase, vitamin B12 helps the body convert harmful homocysteine into harmless methionine.

A clinical study conducted by Polish scientists found taking just 1000 micrograms (one thousandth of a gram) of vitamin B12 every week, along with 300 mg of vitamin B6 and 5 mg of folic acid every day for two months cut homocysteine levels in half. This vitamin B cocktail also reduced levels of thrombin, the clotting agent that sets the stage for a heart attack or stroke.

Protecting your heart against the perils of homocysteine is simple, but most people don't do it despite the efforts of natural health experts all over the world to put out this vital information on vitamin B12. A researcher at Emory University, Atlanta, GA, Godfrey P. Oakley, Jr., MD, MSPM, says "approximately 70% of the adult population in the United States is exposed to a risk factor for cardiovascular disease (an elevated plasma homocysteine concentration) that can be easily avoided simply by consuming a B vitamin supplement."

What are the classic vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms that warn of heart disease? Your best bet is a blood test, but other telltale symptoms include:

  • Frequent flushing across the face
  • Worsening nearsightedness in middle age
  • Forgetfulness

These symptoms are especially important if you are thin, have high arches in your feet, suffer knock-knees, or if you have an unusual hollowing of the chest. These are physical indicators of a deficiency of an enzyme used with vitamin B12 to clear out homocysteine.

The organ most dependent on vitamin B12 for normal functioning is the brain. That's why it should come as no surprise that people who suffer B12 deficiencies tend to develop mental disorders. Vitamin B12 is critical in the creation of the sleep hormone melatonin and the mood hormone serotonin.

Vitamin B12 is also essential to the survival of the nerves themselves. The well- established information on vitamin B12 is that it is essential in the kinds of chemical reactions that "turn on" detoxification mechanisms. These methylation reactions are especially important for detoxifying heavy metals such as arsenic, antimony, and lead.

When vitamin B 12 goes through its own methylation reaction it becomes methylcobalamin. This form of B12 is superior to other forms of the item in that it does not have to be activated before it starts its work.

Methylcobalamin is a super nutrient for the brain. It protects the brain from the ill effects of aspartame, glutamate, and nitric oxide. It also saves the brain form the damaging effects of poor circulation and hypoglycemia.

Glutamate and nitric oxide toxicity are hallmarks of both Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease. Poor circulation and the resulting low levels of oxygenation is a chronic problem after heart attack or stroke. Low blood sugar is a constant risk in well-treated diabetes.

Methylcobalamin also protects myelin, the "insulation" for cells throughout the central nervous system. Degeneration of the myelin layer is implicated in most cases of memory loss and progressive diseases like multiple sclerosis, Lou Gehrig's disease (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), and degeneration of the spinal cord. The information on vitamin B12 recently discovered by French scientists is that the methylcobalamin form of the nutrient promotes regeneration of the insulating myelin and slows the progression of these diseases.

What are the vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms that indicate deficiency is affecting the brain? Studies show that people with elevated levels of homocysteine have trouble remembering and thinking clearly. High levels of homocysteine can cause a condition similar to Alzheimer's disease. In addition to forgetfulness, the hallmark vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms include:

  • Irritability
  • Belligerence, that is unfounded or irrational objections to everyday routine

German scientists have found that giving people with Alzheimer's vitamin B12 reduces belligerence and disturbed behavior.

The neurological condition known as Bell's palsy is not one of the vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms, but it is a sign that supplemental B12 is needed.

Bell's palsy is a temporary paralysis of the facial nerve, usually following a viral infection. People who have Bell's palsy may not be able to open one eye or to close one side of their mouths. Since this condition involves nerves, and vitamin B12 is a key nutrient for nerves, researchers tested vitamin B12 as a treatment.

Sixty people with Bell's palsy were divided into three groups. One group was given standard steroid therapy. The second group was given the form of vitamin B12 known as methylcobalamin plus steroid therapy. The third group was given vitamin B12 alone.

What information on vitamin B12 did the clinical study reveal? The Bell’s palsy patients who were given steroids recovered in 2 to 9 weeks. The Bell’s palsy patients who were given steroids plus vitamin B12 recovered in 2 to 9 days. The Bell’s palsy patients who were given no steroids at all, just vitamin B12, recovered even faster!

Finally, vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms include gastrointestinal symptoms, namely:

  • Heartburn

Researchers have discovered that gastroesophageal reflux disease, better known as heartburn, may be one of the frequently overlooked vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms. The bacterium H. pylori is implicated as the cause of many cases of peptic and duodenal ulcers.

When H. pylori causes ulcers, the stomach can't release enough acid to break down food and release vitamin B12. (Ironically, in peptic ulcer disease there is acid enough to cause pain but not enough acid to digest food.) If peptic ulcer disease is treated with antacids, or with drugs such as Prevacid or Prolisec, vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms become even worse. The antacids reduce stomach levels so low that there is neither heartburn nor complete digestion of food.

Most people simply who suffer vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms simply don't get the recommended daily dosage of vitamin B12, 2 to 3 micrograms, or the dosage of vitamin B12 needed to reverse conditions, up to 200 micrograms a day, from diet and supplements.

But if you if you recognize the key vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms, you can protect your health for just pennies a day. You also will also get a boost to your mood and relief for tired, painful joints. Just be sure your supplement provides you all the B12 you need plus its cofactors B6 and folic acid in an easy-to-take daily dose.

One company that produces a balanced nutritional supplement with vitamin B12 and its cofactors B6 and folic acid is Xtend-Life Natural Products from New Zealand. Their flagship product, Total Balance, is a balanced nutritional supplement containing B12 and its cofactors B6 and folic acid and more! It contains all the vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytonutrients you need in a single, easy-to-take blend.

We take Total Balance ourselves, and are very happy with the results.




Great vitamin information besides vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms back at the home page.

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