The Importance Of Recognizing A Vitamin B12 Deficiency

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All Generations Are At Risk For Low Vitamin B12 Levels

Though elderly citizens are at a higher risk for vitamin B12 deficiencies, even small reductions in the nutrient level can cause harm for infants. If a pregnant woman does not have the recommended levels of vitamin B12, it can lead to birth defects, specifically in the neural tube – the developing portion of the nervous system in the unborn child. Children with neural tube defects are at risk of paralysis and improper development of their nervous systems.

How Can Vitamin B12 Deficiency Be Treated?

To determine a course a treatment, a person must first determine the cause of the deficiency. If a poor diet is the cause, a patient can simply increase his or her consumption of vitamin B12-rich foods. People living vegetarian and vegan lifestyles can meet their daily requirements with pills. These supplements are available as a single dose (strictly B12) or in combination with other nutrients.

If the patient is unable to absorb the nutrient properly, other supplement options are available. In this case pills probably will not be prescribed since the patient’s digestive system cannot process the nutrient. These individuals usually rely on sublingual patches (under the tongue) that bypass the digestive system and allow B12 to be absorbed into the bloodstream or vitamin B12 injections.

Conclusions

A person may not think about vitamin B12 often, but it is one of the important nutrients required for healthy bodily function. Sadly, it is also one of the most common nutrients to be missing from a person’s body. Since a vitamin B12 deficiency can have long-term health effects if left unchecked, patients should talk with a doctor immediately if they suspect low levels of the nutrient.

Guest author Lindsey Dahlberg is passionate about wellness and disease prevention. She works for this nutrition company, encouraging B12 injections and other vitamin supplements as part of a preventative health lifestyle. She helps patients treat serious vitamin deficiencies with various B12 shots.

Related Links

http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/89/2/693S.full
http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000574.htm
http://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/vitamin-b12-deficiency-can-be-sneaky-harmful-201301105780
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/29/health/vitamin-b12-deficiency-can-cause-symptoms-that-mimic-aging.html?_r=1&
http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2013/05/16/1301816110.abstract

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Category: Disease Prevention, General Health, Health Risks, Symptom Information

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