Cobalamin, or better known as vitamin B12, another water soluble nutrient, is a crucial vitamin due to the fact that it boosts nerve cell development as well as that of red blood cells. This vitamin is somewhat different from other water solubles in the way that it can be stored in the body, or better said, in the liver, for a number of years. It can be said that the right developing of the DNA depends on this vitamin, and thus, this is a vital vitamin for expecting mothers. It is also very relevant for the maintaining of a healthy metabolism, the process of making and using energy, this being its major function. Thus, the tasks that this vitamin enables are circulation, digestion, respiration, absorption, as well as the regulating of body temperature.
There are also other health benefits linked with this vitamin. For instance, in combination with vitamin B6 and folic acid, it may aid in the reducing of the risk of breast cancer. It is also useful in preventing cardiovascular disorders, depression, and fatigue. But it is especially efficient in treating the following:
- Depression – As a matter of fact, all the B vitamin family members are very beneficial when it comes to emotional wellbeing issues, and even though B12 cannot be considered as any kind of replacement for psychological therapy, it has been reported that a combo of B vitamin and physical exercises can go a long way in boosting mood.
- Pregnancy – Due to the fact that this vitamin is a vital factor in the development of healthy red blood cells, DNA and nerve cells, all expecting mothers should take supplements of B12, as well as enhance their diets with high-level B12 foodstuffs, such as liver, mollusks, and fish.
- Lactation – While lactating, the mother’s body transfers some of the B12 vitamin to the baby via the breast milk. Considering that the mother’s body requires additional B12 vitamin in order to heal and regenerate post-partum, extra B12 will be required for both the mother and the baby during the nursing period.
- Alzheimer’s – In the case of memory loss or a lack of mental acuity, a diet which abounds in vitamin B12 or even dietary supplements might help alleviate this condition, as it boosts nerve development and functioning.
What are the food sources of this vitamin?
The main nutritional sources for this vitamin are animal foods, like for instance meat, eggs as well as dairy foods. However, seafood is also very high on the list for B12-rich foods, with oysters, clams, salmon, crab, and sardines on the top. Quite good sources are also beef, turkey, and chicken. Thus, vegetarians and vegans who abstain from eggs of dairy products or eggs are at risk of a lack of vitamin B12.
What are some B12 Supplements?
Supplements are needed only if the diet is lacking in the above mentioned foods, and even though supplements of this vitamin are considered to be safe, ingesting one of the B vitamins by themselves may affect a disproportion in the other B vitamins. Supplements may also have a negative interaction with particular medicaments (for instance, tetracycline).
What are the suggested daily needs of this vitamin?
It is par for the course that the recommended nutritional intake of this vitamin differs in dependence of age as well as gender. Of course, expecting and lactating mothers require larger doses. Thus, men and women aged 14 and over require 2.4 micrograms of vitamin B12 per day. Children aged from 1 to 3 require 0.9 micrograms, while youngsters between 4 and 8 years of age require 1.2 micrograms. On the other hand, young preteens aged from 9 to 13 require 1.8 micrograms.