by HEALTHY HEART CLINICS
What is B12 and why is it important?
Vitamin B-12 (also known as cobalamin) is necessary for red blood cell formation, cell metabolism, nerve function, and the production of DNA. B-12 is an essential component in brain function and development. B-12 is found in animal foods because it binds to the proteins. B-12 can be found in poultry, meat, fish, and dairy products. It can also be taken as a supplement. B-12 is essential to how your brain develops and functions. Those with a B-12 deficiency have an increased risk of developing anemia, fatigue, muscle weakness, intestinal problems, nerve damage, and mood disturbances if the deficiency is left untreated. Older adults and people with digestive tract conditions are also susceptible to B-12 deficiency.
What are symptoms of B-12 deficiency?
If left untreated, B-12 deficiency can cause anemia (low red blood cell count or low hemoglobin count in each cell)
Anemia symptoms include but are not limited to:
- Fatigue and/or lethargy
- Shortness of breath
- Feeling faint
- Pale skin
- Tinnitus (hearing sounds coming from inside the body rather than from an outside source)
- Weight loss
- Loss of appetite
Depending on your condition and health needs, a provider may prescribe you B-12 injections to make sure you are receiving a healthy amount of B-12 vitamin for your brain to function and develop.
When should I see my provider?
If you are experiencing any symptoms of anemia, see a provider. If you eat a diet that avoids any animal products, see a provider to know your B-12 levels and what supplements you may need.
Each patient deserves the highest quality of care. Creating a personalized care program tailored to each patient’s unique conditions, needs and circumstances can help people regain control and maintain optimum health.