The Many Benefits of Vitamin B12
Known for its energy-boosting effects, vitamin B12 is an essential nutrient that plays a key role in many bodily functions. In the body, the Benefits of Vitamin B12 include responsibility for the production of red blood cells and DNA, as well as the maintenance of nerve tissue. It’s no wonder that this nutrient is often referred to as the “energy vitamin.”
While B12 can be found in animal-based foods such as meat, poultry, fish, and eggs, some people may not get enough of this nutrient from diet alone. This is especially true for vegetarians, vegans, and older adults, since the body’s ability to absorb B12 decreases with age.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the many benefits of vitamin B12 and where you can find it naturally and in supplements.
Vitamin B12 is essential for good health. Here are some of the ways this nutrient supports the body:
1. Energy Production
B12 is responsible for a number of essential functions in the body. Perhaps most importantly, it helps to produce red blood cells and DNA. Red blood cells are vital for transporting oxygen to the body’s tissues, while DNA is essential for cell growth and repair.
B12 is also involved in the metabolism of fats and proteins and plays a role in nerve function. Consequently, a deficiency of B12 can lead to many problems, including fatigue, anemia, and neuropathy.
2. Brain Health
Vitamin B12 is essential for brain health. This nutrient helps to produce myelin, a substance that protects nerve cells and ensures proper nerve function.
B12 also plays a role in the production of serotonin and dopamine, two neurotransmitters that are important for mood and cognitive function. A deficiency of B12 has been linked to depression, dementia, and other neurological problems.
If you think you may be deficient in vitamin B12, you must speak to your doctor.
3. Heart Health
Vitamin B12 is an important nutrient for heart health. This vitamin helps to keep homocysteine levels in check. Homocysteine is an amino acid that can damage blood vessels and contribute to heart disease.
Vitamin B12 helps to prevent homocysteine from building up in the blood vessels, and thus helps to keep the heart healthy.
4. Cancer Prevention
Vitamin B12 may also play a role in cancer prevention. This vitamin helps to repair damaged DNA and prevent the formation of cancerous cells.
Vitamin B12 has also been shown to boost the immune system, which can help the body fight off infection and disease.
While more research is needed, these findings suggest that vitamin B12 may help to protect against some types of cancer.
How to Get Vitamin B12
Vitamin B12 is found naturally in animal-based foods such as meat, poultry, fish, and eggs. If you eat these foods regularly, you’re likely getting enough B12.
However, vegetarians, vegans, and older adults may not get enough vitamin B12 from diet alone.
These groups should consider taking vitamin B12 liquid drops or supplements.
Vitamin B12 supplements are available in many forms, including tablets, capsules, liquids, and injections. The best way to take vitamin B12 depends on your individual needs.
For example, people with pernicious anemia should take vitamin B12 injections because they can’t absorb this nutrient from food or supplements.
Vitamin B12 is an essential nutrient that plays a key role in many bodily functions. This vitamin is found naturally in animal-based foods, but some people may not get enough from diet alone.