You may have heard of B12 as a miracle vitamin. A cure for hangovers, the substance that helps increase your immune system, and the thing that will help you lose weight. The thing is, B12 isn’t just a hot topic for the moment. It’s a vitamin that’s been critical to human health for ages. If you’ve been wondering what B12 is and why it’s important to maintaining a healthy lifestyle this guide is for you.
What Is B12?
B12 is a nutrient critical to our health. It is essential to maintaining energy, a strong immune system, healthy nerve cells and more.
Although B12 is naturally present in some foods, it’s estimated that nearly 40% of Americans suffer from a lack of B12. “I think there is a lot of undetected vitamin B12 deficiency out there,” says Jean Mayer, a nutritional epidemiologist at the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University in Boston.
For those with a deficiency, low B12 levels can cause chronic fatigue. B12 deficiency can also lead to a kind of anemia marked by fewer but larger red blood cells. In more critical cases, B12 deficiency can disrupt your balance, cause numbness in the limbs and hands, and cause general confusion. Perhaps most critically, B12 deficiency can lead to dementia.
Fortunately for us, we can cure B12 deficiency with by changing our diet, taking B12 supplements or getting B12 injections at a local doctors office or
Can You Get Too Much B12?
Although there’s a such thing as too much of anything, B12 is considered to be one of the safest vitamins with an extremely low chance of overdose or negative side effects. Because it is a water soluble vitamin, your body can remove any excess B12 naturally in the form of urine.
Since there haven’t been issues of toxicity with B12, the Food and Nutrition Board has not set an upper limit for B12 consumption. In other words, it would be very, very difficult to get too much B12. As a result, it’s a great thing to supplement your health with B12 shots, injections or pills.
How to Test if You Have A B12 Deficiency
Although it’s difficult to get too much B12 in your system, it can still be good to test to see if you have a B12 deficiency. The easiest way to do this is to go to your primary care provider near you. They will most likely prepare a blood test so they can check your B12 levels. Here’s how the test works:
- Prior to getting a B12 blood test ensure you’re nice and hydrated.
- During the evaluation, your physician will roll up your sleeve and then clean a tiny region of elbow or your arm with an alcohol pad or an antiseptic wipe. Your physician will then insert the needle in your vein.
- After enough blood is drawn, the physician will remove the needle and apply a bandage to the area. Your blood sample is subsequently taken to a laboratory to quantify for vitamin B-12 or alternative mark, like holoTC.
Soon thereafter, the physician will contact you with the results of your test. They will then advise you on whether you need to take further actions to maintain healthy levels of B12 in your blood.
How Should I Get B12?
If you’re already convinced you need a regular dose of B12 you’re smarter than me! The first time I realized I was B12 deficient my doctor had just read my blood results. She said my levels were extremely low and suggested she give me a B12 shot right then and there. I remember leaving the doctor’s office so clearly. Suddenly I was less tired. I had energy. The entire world seemed brighter. When I went out to dinner that night I literally sat down at the table and asked, “Do people literally feel this good all the time?”
Ever since then I’ve been monitoring my B12 levels more closely. I get B12 shots regularly and am dedicated to helping others find good locations where they can get B12 shots near them as well.
If you’re interested in getting access to B12, there are many ways you can do so. The first is to buy pills. My favorite are the cherry flavored sublingual B12 pills, but any B12 pill will do. The second, and more powerful way to get B12 is to get shots or injections. We recommend this method because you get more B12 directly into your bloodstream more quickly and efficiently.
What Do You Think
Want to share your knowledge or experience about B12? Tell us about the first time you got a B12 shot, why you started taking B12, or how it’s helped you live a happier, healthier lifestyle.