Alternative Medicine

Why B12 is important for Vegans, Athletes and Diabetics

A naturopathic doctor in Phoenix will tell you that vitamin B12 is one of the most important vitamins the body can have. B12 takes the carbohydrates, fats and proteins that we get from food and converts them into energy. Without B12, you might feel sluggish and tired. You may also feel depressed and moody.

Pill TreatmentB12 is also an important part of keeping the immune system running the way it should. When you take B12, you are helping to ward off infections and illness.

Another function of vitamin b12 is to form healthy red blood cells. B12 also helps form a protective fatty layer around the cells in the body. This is especially important for the cells in the brain. Without vitamin b12, the brain would not function properly.

Symptoms of having a vitamin b12 deficiency include memory loss, depression, anemia, constipation and tingling or numbness in the feet and hands. If you are experiencing these symptoms, you may be lacking the right vitamins and minerals including vitamin b12.

Vegans are at risk for having vitamin b12 deficiency. This is because vegetables do not have vitamin b12 in them. Animal products are the main source of b12 so most vegans do not get enough vitamin b12. A naturopathic doctor in Phoenix can take a blood test to find out if you are deficient of vitamin b12. If you are, you can take supplements and you will notice a difference almost immediately. There are several ways you can get sources of vitamin b12 supplements. Vitamins, chews, drinks and injections are all available for people needing vitamin b12.

Diabetics are another group that are at an increased risk of vitamin b12 deficiency. That is because medication that is used to control diabetes can interfere with the absorption of vitamin b12. Diabetics should be regularly tested for a vitamin b12 deficiency.

Athletes should also get plenty of b vitamins. Those who lack b vitamins will have a harder time building muscle mass and repairing muscles than those who regularly eat a diet containing vitamin b12 and other b vitamins. Research has shown that even a small deficiency in b vitamins can cause slow recovery in athletes. Those who diet or exercise may lose vitamins through excess sweat and urine therefore they should see a naturopathic doctor in Phoenix and make sure they get extra b vitamins or take supplements containing a variety of vitamins including vitamin b12.

Good food sources of vitamin b12 include eggs, salmon, chicken, lamb, pork, milk and cheese. Vegetarians, diabetics and athletes should watch for symptoms of vitamin b12 deficiencies. It’s important to get blood tests done regularly and take supplements if you are not getting enough b12 in your diet. Not getting enough b12 in your diet can risk your chances of heart disease by increasing the levels of homocysteine. Taking vitamin B12 along with folic acid can help reduce the level of homocysteine, therefore decreasing your chances of heart disease.

A good level of B12 in the blood would be 1000 pg/ml. Anything less than 400 pg/ml would indicate a deficiency. B12 supplements are safe even in high amounts. It is one of the most important vitamins you can take so make sure your body gets enough of it on a daily basis. Talk to a naturopathic doctor in Phoenix about taking Vitamin B12.

September 19, 2012
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