There are many causes for vitamin B12 deficiency and the effects have many different impacts to one’s health. The human body needs vitamin B12 to make red blood cells, nerves, DNA, and to carry out other functions. Vegetarians are most at risk at developing the condition, especially if they don’t consume grains that have been fortified with the vitamin or if they don’t take vitamin B12 supplements.
Here are five of the best foods to eat to keep symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency away:
Animal liver and kidneys
Liver and kidneys, especially from lamb, are rich sources of vitamin B12. Lamb is higher in vitamin B12 than beef and has high levels of copper, selenium and vitamin B2. Liver is considered to be a superfood by health experts and is one of the most nutritious foods to eat.
Sardines contains all the essential nutrients the body needs and in good amounts. Sardines also help reduce inflammation and improve the heart health. Sardines are high in protein, calcium, iron and riboflavin.
Tuna contains high concentrations of vitamin B12 and has a high amount of lean protein, phosphorus, selenium and vitamins A and B3.
A vitamin B12 deficiency can give you symptoms such as fatigue, weakness and memory loss
Doctor Marilyn Glenville
Clams are an excellent source of B vitamins and are an exceptional source of vitamin B12. The mollusk is a lean source of protein and have been shown to be a good source of antioxidants.
A good source for vegans and contains high levels of protein, vitamins and minerals.
As with fortified cereals, the vitamin in B12 in nutritional yeast is vegan-friendly as its synthetically made.
Doctor Marilyn Glenville advises: “Vegans will need to ensure an adequate intake of vitamin B12 which is found in animal foods, fortified foods, yeast extracts or in a supplement.
“A vitamin B12 deficiency can give you symptoms such as fatigue, weakness and memory loss.”
The NHS lists the symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency:
- Extreme tiredness
- Lack of energy
- Feeling faint
- Pale skin
- Noticeable heartbeats
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
If you have anaemia caused by vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms include:
- A pale yellow tinge to the skin
- Sore and red tongue
- Mouth ulcers
- Pins and needles
- Disturbed vision
Vitamin B12 plays a big role in the brain’s production of chemicals that affect both mood and other brain functions. Doctor Glenville said: “Low levels of both serum folate and B12 are associated with a greater risk of depression.
“It’s always best to take a supplement containing a combination of the B vitamins as they all work synergistically, thus when taken together work more effectively.”
If you suspect you might have a vitamin B12 deficiency you should speak with your doctor about the best supplements to take to help reduce the symptoms.
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