Natural vitamin B12 supplements

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Robert Maurer
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 , Naturopath

La Vitamin B12 o Cyanocobalamin, is a water-soluble vitamin and is the only vitamin that contains in its structure an essential mineral element, the cobalt, hence its chemical name cyanocobalamin.

The main coenzyme forms are methylcobalamin, hydroxocobalamin and deoxyadenosylcobalamin.

> Properties of vitamin B12

> Vitamin B12 food supplements

> Herbal supplements of vitamin B12


> Vitamin B12 supplements on the market


> Daily requirement

 

Eggs, a source of vitamin B12

 

Properties of vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 participates in the metabolism of all developing cells, especially those of the blood, which are characterized by a very fast turnover. To perform this function it acts in association with other substances, such as lfolic acid, vitamin C and pantothenic acid (Vitamin B5). Digestion and absorption of vitamin B12 depend on the following factors:

  • The gastric juice, which allows it to detach from the proteins introduced with food.
  • A substance called intrinsic factor, that is, a glycoprotein produced by the mucous membrane of the stomach, which binds vitamin B12, transports it to the intestine and allows it to be absorbed to be stored above all in the liver. 
  • Calcium, a mineral that facilitates its absorption in the intestine.

In the body, vitamin B12 is deposited mainly in the liver, kidney, bone marrow and organs in which a high turnover of cells takes place. Vitamin B12 is essential:

  • For all accretion processeso and cell development: it has been shown to be effective in the treatment of some diseases of the digestive system characterized by degeneration of the lining cells.
  • For the prevention and therapy ofmegaloblastic anemia (once called pernicious anemia), a disease characterized by larger but more immature and fewer red blood cells than noema, which manifests itself with tiredness, paleness, digestive and nervous system disorders.
  • For the protection and proper functioning of the nervous system: it can relieve symptoms such as irritability, memory impairment, insomnia, depression, headache.

 



Food supplements of vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 is contained in good quantities (the values ​​are here expressed in micrograms and referred to 100 g of product) in foods of animal origin, in which it is bound to proteins. They are an excellent source:

  • Meat and offal, especially liver (104 mcg) and frogs (60 mcg).
  • Fish, especially shellfish (98 mcg), oysters (18 mcg), oily fish (17 mcg), trout (8,7 mcg), salmon (4 mcg), tuna (3 mcg).
  • Eggs (2 mcg).
  • Milk (1 glass = 30 mcg) and cheeses.

In food vitamin B12 is bound to proteins and requires the presence of hydrochloric acid and gastric protease to be made available for absorption. So long as Vitamin B12 is synthesized in very small quantities by the intestinal bacterial flora, people who follow a strictly vegetarian diet, i.e. not supplemented with milk and eggs, must take supplements or foods enriched with this vitamin, the deficiency of which can last for a few years without presenting symptoms.

 

Herbal supplements of vitamin B12

A natural vitamin B12 supplement is given from the Nori seaweed. The vitamin B12 contained in it is well absorbable and also - at least partially - active from the metabolic point of view. The Nori seaweed is a red seaweed native to Japan and is used for sushi preparation.

Nori seaweed is usually sold in sheets. When the thalli are large enough they are carefully collected and washed in the sea; they are then cut into a suitable size and reduced to a pulp and poured into a metal container for the production of the sheets. They are then dried in warm air chambers. The sheets are then sorted according to their apparent quality, cut into sheets and packaged to be marketed. 



 

Also discover the properties, benefits and contraindications of the nori seaweed

 

Commercially available vitamin B12 supplements

Vitamin B12 is used therapeutically in two forms: cyanocobalamin and hydroxocobalamin. In cells, on the other hand, vitamin B12 is found naturally as methylcobalamin and deoxyadenosylcobalamin. Vitamin B12 is, therefore, vitamin complex. 


On the market it is possible to find specific vitamin B12 supplements that can also be consumed by children or pregnant women. Its use, however, it should always be agreed with your doctor.

Vitamin B12 supplements can be found commercially in oral tablets, intramuscular injection drops and sublingual tablets, particularly recommended for those who cannot take the tablets due to intestinal problems.

 

Daily requirement of vitamin B12

The daily requirement of vitamin B12 is rather modest, as there are important reserves of this vitamin in our body.

An adult person needs 2 - 2,5 µg of vitamin B12 per day. The requirement increases slightly during the pregnancy e breastfeeding. In particular, the need for vitamin B12 is as follows:

  • Infant (up to 12 months): 0,5 mcg / day
  • Child (<4 years old): 0,7 mcg / day
  • Child (<7 years old): 1 mcg / day
  • Child (<11 years old): 1,4 mcg / day
  • Adult, child (age> 11 years): 2 mcg / day
  • Pregnancy: 2,2 mcg / day
  • Breastfeeding: 2,6 mcg / day

Vitamin B12 supplementation is useful in case of:


  • Insufficient intake with food.
  • Lack of intrinsic factor production.
  • Presence of bacteria or parasites in the intestine that interfere with absorption.
  • Reduced intestinal absorption.

 

READ MORE
Vitamin B12 and folic acid

 

Other articles on vitamin B12:
> The vitamin B12 supplement: when to take it?
> Vitamin B12 and veganism: a possible agreement?
> Where is vitamin B12 found

> Vitamin B12, when to take it and dosage

> The link between vitamin B12 deficiency and the sciatic nerve

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