B12: The Bone Strengthening, Blues Busting Vitamin
Do you feel like you are forgetful? Always feel tired? How about forgetful? These are major symptoms of a vitamin B12 deficiency. Research suggest that about 40% of Americans are. B12 deficiency's can become so severe they result in symptoms such as tingling feet, chronic joint pain and severe shaking, and have been mistaken for Parkinson's Disease. The benefits of B12 are great! If you think you may be deficient, you should see a doctor for blood tests to determine if you need to start supplementing it in your diet.
B12 for a Better Mood
One of the signs of a B12 deficiency is feeling down or blue. B12 feeds the nervous system and the pineal and adrenal glands, which play a key role in a persons mood. Taking 1,000mcg. of this B vitamin every day can help even out your mood and make you feel better. Also, people who suffer from depression can benefit from this vitamin. Studies have shown that it can increase the effectiveness of prescription antidepressants.
B12 is a major player in allowing electrical impulses to move throughout the body. When impulses are interrupted or slowed down, the brain doesn't function as well. Some of the first symptoms of a B12 deficiency is general feelings of confusion and even memory loss. The memory loss can become so overwhelming through this deficiency that people think they are developing Alzheimer's Disease. You should see your doctor if you are suffering from confusion and memory loss. If he determines it is due to a vitamin B12 deficiency, he can prescribe a dosage for you. Once the deficiency is corrected, memory function clears in a few weeks.
Osteoblasts are tiny cells that work around the clock building new, healthy bone tissue. Vitamin B12 activates these osteoblasts. In a study at Tufts University, scientists measured the bone density of 2,600 adult females and found that the women whose diets had the highest levels of B12 had the strongest, most break-resistant bones in the study group. If you are worried about your bone health, you might want to take some B12 in addition to your calcium and vitamin D from now on.
Cures Canker Sores
I don't know if you have ever had them, but I have and believe my they are painful. My son used to get them terribly. He would get three or four huge ones at a time. Then I heard about giving him B12 to help them. We had tried everything, so I figured it couldn't hurt. It didn't happen overnight, but within a few months, we were seeing less and less of them. He rarely gets them now, and when he does, they aren't nearly as large and don't last nearly as long as they used to. There was an actual study done in Israeli in B12 treating canker sores. A daily dosage of 1,000mcg was given to participants daily. After five months, 74% of them said that the canker sore flare-ups had completely disappeared!
If you are taking medicines that inhibit absorption, such as medications for diabetes, high cholesterol or heartburn, you have a better chance of becoming B12 deficient. Also, if you are a vegetarian or have digestive problems you have an increased risk of becoming deficient. As with any medical condition or beginning any supplement, you should always check with your doctor first, but here are some easy ways to get more B12 in your diet.
Take a Multi-Vitamin- People who know me, know that I preach this all the time! Studies have shown that only 1 in 12 people who take a daily multivitamin will become B12 deficient.
Eat Leafy Greens- Loaded with B6 which is needed to properly absorb B12. A cup a day should work.
Eat Fortified Cereals- Cereals are aimed at the nutrition needs of children and therefore are fortified with vitamins and minerals. Eating cereal everyday for breakfast is an easy way to get 100% of the RDA of B12 (as well as a lot of other vitamins and minerals) If you aren't thrilled about all the sugar in kids cereals, cereals geared towards adults are fortified as well. Some healthier choices are Product 19, Multigrain Total or Kashi Heart to Heart.
Sublingual B12- Sublingual vitamins are placed under the tongue to dissolve and are more rapidly and easily absorbed than other vitamins. If you are experiencing any symptoms you could try 1,000mcg. of the Sublingual B12.
**AS ALWAYS, WHEN STARTING A NEW SUPPLEMENT, YOU SHOULD ALWAYS CONSULT WITH YOUR DOCTOR FIRST**