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All you wanted to know about Vitamin B12 deficiency

Vitamin B12 is important for our body. It aids in the development of DNA and red blood cells. Since our bodies do not produce Vitamin B12 we need to get it from animal based foods or from supplements. It is necessary to take these supplements and natural sources of vitamin B12 on a regular basis.

Vitamin B12 deficiency is quite common is people who are vegan, meaning those who do not take any animal products, meat, milk, cheese, and eggs. And those who do not take enough eggs or dairy products. Babies who are born to mothers who are vegetarian and who doesn’t take enough eggs and dairy products to meet their vitamin B12 requirements also suffer from vitamin B12 deficiency. The risk of vitamin B12 deficiency also increases with age.

Certain medical conditions can also increase the risk of vitamin B12, such as atrophic gastritis, pernicious anemia, weight loss surgery, celiac disease, crohn’s disease, immune system disorders, heavy drinking, and intake of acid-reducing drugs.

People who do not get adequate amount of Vitamin B12 can suffer from anemeia. A mild deficiency usually causes no symptoms but if left untreated it may progress and can cause the following symptoms:

Weakness

Shortness of breath

Pale skin

Smooth tongue

Constipation

Diarrhoea

Loss of appetite

Muscle weakness

Tingling sensation

Loss of vision

Memory loss

Behavioural changes

Vitamin B12 deficiency can be prevented by taking enough meat, poultry, seafood, dairy products, and eggs. People who do not eat animal products or those who have a medical condition that prevents their bodies from absorbing nutrients can eat multivitamins containing B12 to provide their bodies with the essential amount of B12. Eating breakfast cereal fortified with vitamin B12 is also a good solution to meet the body’s natural requirement for B12.

If you experience the above symptoms of B12, you may consult your doctor. He would conduct the necessary tests to determine whether you suffer from Vitamin B12 deficiency or not. You can ask your doctor for hair follicle test. Hair follicle test is a reliable and effective test to diagnose vitamin deficiencies, chronic diseases, and other diseases. Hair follicle test enables doctors to know the exact cause of the underlying problem and offer the best treatment thereby.

There are many treatments available to treat vitamin B12 deficiency, such as providing vitamin B12 injections, high doses of oral replacements, and nasal therapy for life. Your doctor would use the hair follicle test analysis and results to determine the best treatment for you