Being vitamin B12 deficient has serious impact on your health. That is why it’s important to know what are our options for supplementing in this condition.
What is more, knowing who SHOULD definitely supplement with B12 is a MUST, because of our fast-paced and changing lifestyle.
Let’s get started!
Table of Contents
Who should supplement with B12?
There are several groups of people who are prone to Cobalamin deficiency and should consider supplementing. Of course, it is best to seek a doctor’s advice before making the decision:
- Individuals following a vegan or vegetarian eating regime.
- Pregnant women
- People over 50 years old (because after 50, the levels of intrinsic factor production naturally decrease).
- People who drink a lot of alcoholic beverages.
- Individuals suffering from gastrointestinal diseases.
- People who have identified B12 deficiency.
- People who lack B12 but CAN absorb it (if their body is unable to absorb Cobalamin, there is no point in taking supplements: they will just pass through the body).
How to choose a B12 supplement?
There are 2 types of Cobalamin available on the market:
- Methylcobalamin. This is the type of B12 that is naturally found in foods. More specifically, the body “accepts” this type of vitamin right away.
- Cyanocobalamin. This is the synthetic version of B12. In the body, it is converted in Methylcobalamin and then is absorbed. Because of this conversion, it takes a longer time to absorb cyanocobalamin than Methylcobalamin.
Advice: Choose Methylcobalamin because this way, the body will not lose excess time and energy for transforming and absorbing it.
You can find B12 in 3 forms:
- Liquid (drops with a pipette)
- Pills (for ingesting)
- Lozenges (for sublingual usage)
According to various research and study sources, there is no difference in the effect of B12 supplements. So, you can choose whichever form suits you the most without any concerns.
We already mentioned the Recommended Daily Dose of Cobalamin for the different age groups.
In terms of supplements, you should consider your age and specific situation to choose the correct one. Below, you will find some guidelines:
- Adults with no B12 deficiency symptoms
- Vegans (long term)
- Vegetarians (long term)
- People who eat limited amounts of meat and dairy foods
- Pregnant women
- People who experience slight B12 deficiency symptoms
- People above the age of 50
- Lactating women
- Individuals suffering from anemia or gastrointestinal problems
- People experiencing moderate-to-intense B12 deficiency symptoms
- · Individuals experiencing severe symptoms of B12 deficiency
It is essential to seek doctor’s advice: do not self-diagnose and do not start any treatment without discussion with a specialist (especially therapy with high doses of Cobalamin).
Alone or in complex?
B12 can be found as an ingredient in every kind of B-Complex vitamins. However, if you aim to boost your cobalamin blood levels, taking B-complex is not the best option to consider. The reason for this is the fact that the multivitamin tablets contain a tiny dose of B12. So if you are deficient, it will take a lot of time to “fill in” the depleted amounts of the vitamin in the body.
The good thing about B-complex is that it contains Folate (B9), which enhances the absorption of B12. However, you can also buy and use Folate separately.
Another compound, which stimulates cobalamin digestion is Vitamin D.