Depressed? Low on Energy? You May Be Not Be Getting Enough of this Vitamin
In his book, Your Nutrition Prescription, Dr. H.L. Newbold tells the story of a 76-year old German woman who came to see him. She had been crying uncontrollably for 6 months, and was unable to function fully because of her state. Despite having normal vitamin B12 blood levels Dr. Newbold decided to try an injection of B12 anyway.
The results were impressive to say the least…
She returned to his office three days later, no longer crying, reporting that she felt stronger than she’d felt in a long time, and she was even able to sleep through the night for the first time in weeks. She said she, “…felt happy to be able to do something as simple as housekeeping.”
And that, my friends, is the dramatic effect that B12 can have.
Why You May NOT Be Getting Enough Vitamin B12…
If there’s one vitamin that older people are frequently low in, it’s vitamin B12. In one study, 15% of adults older than 65 had clinically low levels of this vitally important vitamin, and most nutritionists think the number is much higher.
One of the reasons you may be low in vitamin B12 is that in order to absorb it, you need a protein found in the gastric juice of the stomach called intrinsic factor. As we get older we make less acid, and have less intrinsic factor.
To add to this problem, antacids (which many people take) wreak havoc on our ability to make this critical chemical.
And without enough intrinsic factor, we won’t absorb much vitamin B12, even if we’re getting plenty of it in our diet.
Vegetarians—and especially vegans—are especially at risk for vitamin B12 deficiencies, not only because they don’t get much from their food, but because they often don’t eat enough protein to make this essential intrinsic factor.
What Happens When You’re Low in B12…
The classic symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency include depression and low energy. So if you’ve got the blues or you constantly feel burned out this may well be the reason.
As if depression and low energy weren’t enough, getting enough B12 is critical for reducing homocysteine, a nasty amino acid that can increase the risk of heart attack and stroke. Research has shown that high levels of homocysteine double the risk of dementia or cognitive impairment.
Which leads me to the B12–Alzheimer’s connection.
There was an interesting study done in Wales, which looked at whether or not Alzheimer’s disease was a result of vitamin B12 deficiency. While this subject is still hotly debated among physicians, this study seemed to show very clearly that there is indeed a link.
Researchers evaluated members of a family with a genetic predisposition towards Alzheimer’s disease. They found that 67% of family members with confirmed Alzheimer’s disease also had abnormally low blood levels of vitamin B12, compared to 8% who were at equal genetic risk for developing Alzheimer’s but did not.
But you don’t have to be old to take B12. In fact, there is a litany of other reasons why it’s important to keep your B12 status at adequate levels.
B12 can help remineralize bones, inhibit the replication of the HIV virus, and has been shown to be effective against asthma if the asthma is sulfite induced.
And B12 can greatly improve nervous system function which also makes it beneficial for those with diabetic neuropathy and multiple sclerosis. It protects against environmental toxins, enhances immunity, and may even help with sleep disorders.
How to Optimize Your Vitamin B12 Levels…
You can enhance your B12 levels by focusing on foods that are filled with this critical vitamin. Foods that are high in B12 include clams, liver, trout, sockeye salmon, and beef.
For most people, a multivitamin with all the B’s also makes a lot of sense.
And many people find that they just feel a bit better when they take a high-quality B-complex vitamin as well.
If you suspect you are low in B12 specifically, I also recommend considering a supplement that contains enough to replete your levels. This usually means taking B12 as a separate supplement.
To help you optimize your B12 levels, enhance your energy, and protect yourself from the horrors of vitamin B12 deficiency, this week we are offering a discount on a few of our favorite supplements that contain B vitamins.
We like this one for two reasons.
One, it’s the methylcobalamin form of B12 which is much better as it eliminates the need for the liver to convert the cheaper cyanocobalamin to the active form of vitamin B12.
Two, it’s a lozenge. The body’s able to absorb B12 directly through the mucosal tissue of the mouth making this an ideal way to increase B12 levels quickly.
B vitamins are competitively absorbed, so it’s a good idea to take them separately. So if you go with this wonderful B12 lozenge, take it at a different time from your B-complex and your multi. For example, if you take your B-complex in the morning, take this at lunch time.
If you’re concerned that you may not be getting enough B vitamins in general, this is an excellent broad-spectrum B-complex. It’s important to understand that B vitamins work like an orchestra, they depend on each other and work best when they are all playing together. So if you are low on B vitamins, I strongly encourage you to add this to your daily supplement routine.
If you aren’t already taking a multi, this is an excellent option. It covers all the bases, and includes a good dose of the B vitamins you need to enhance your energy, protect your memory, and optimize your mood
Vitamin B12 (and the rest of the B vitamins) is a superstar nutrient that most people don’t get enough of. Try these supplements, and you may just find your mood skyrockets, your mind sharpens, and your overall outlook on life is enhanced. That’s not to mention the health-protective benefits you’ll receive long term.
Wishing You Health and Wellness,
The Rockwell Nutrition Team