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Warning Signs of B-12 Deficiency

Updated on May 19, 2009

Are you B-12 Deficient? Check these warning signs...

Do I Lack energy and feel tired much of the time?

Do I feel depressed or blue much of the time?

Have I been under a lot of stress lately?

Do I have brain fog or difficultry concentrating?

If you answered "yes" to any question, you may have a B vitamin deficiency.

B-12 deficiency can sometimes result in more than a lack of energy. With all the hectic demands of today, most people could use more energy. However, if you consistently experience exhaustion, irritability, forgetfulness or brain fog, it may be a sign of something more serious. In fact, any of these conditions could be a sign of sublingual b-12 deficiency.

There are many things in today's world that can lead to B vitamin deficiency. Stress is one cause, it comes in many forms-mental, physical, emotional and environmental-and it creates within the body a demand for Vitamin B-12 that's greater than what a typical diet can supply. Similarly, certain prescription medications can cause Vitamin B-12 depletion for the same reason that stress does.

Diets also can lead to B-12 deficiency. Most people get their B-12 vitamins from the foods they eat. But in today's world, eating right and getting the right nutrition often doesn't happen. I know I am the worlds worst about eating the right foods. Another cause of B-12 deficiencies is digestion problems. I know this problem very well. I have suffered from gastric reflux for quit sometime now. Gastric bypass surgeries, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, colitis and other digestive conditions inhibit the body's absorption of B-12 from foods.

On top of this, the body's ability to absorb B vitamins starts decreasing as early as age 40,and continues to decrease with each passing year.

Benefits of Vitamin B-12

 Vitamin B12 is needed to prevent pernicious anemia- a condition in which the body can't make enough healthy red blood cells.

One important function of B12 is to aid in the production of DNA, the genetic material in all cells.

Vitamin B12 has long been known to promote normal growth and development.
Deficiencies in B12 are been known to cause nerve damage relating to loss of memory, poor concentration and abnormal sensations.

B12 supports increased energy levels and is commonly given in injection form to people suffering from chronic fatigue.

Vitamin B12 helps the body release melatonin faster. This improves sleeping patterns - resulting in more restful sleep.

B12 is involved in the metabolism of every cell of the body.
Low levels of B12 have been associated with elevated homocysteine levels which increases the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Recent studies indicate that B12 may help lower the risk of age-related vision loss.
Vitamin B12 is required for proper digestion and absorption of foods.

What foods are Rich in Vitamin B-12?

 Food containing vitamin B12 are mostly animal-derived foods. A diet of food
containing vitamin B12, such as dairy products or eggs provides adequate vitamin
B12. For vegetarians, fortified food containing vitamin B12 are also available.
These include Nutri-Grain, some brands of nutritional yeast, or some soy

Besides animal products and yeast extracts, there are other sources as well that
can be considered as food rich in vitamin B12. These are: asparagus, bananas,
broccoli, brown rice, cheese, dried apricots, died dates and figs, eggs, fish, milk,
nuts, potatoes, poultry, pulses, red meat, spinach, wheat germ, wholegrain
cereals, yeast extract (e.g. marmite), and yogurt.

Make Sure You Choose the Right Vitamin B-12

 This is perhaps the most important consideration when choosing a b12 supplement. While regular supplements such as your multi-vitamin or b-complex vitamins might have plenty of b12, this particular vitamin is poorly absorbed by the stomach and the intestine. While it will still do some good, swallowing Vitamin B12 in pill form is not optimal.

On the other hand, when a sublingual b-12 is placed under the tongue and allowed to dissolve- the B12 enters the blood stream directly through the blood vessels on the lining under the tongue. This is a much more effective way to raise B12 levels in the body.

Inventor of Trivita Sublingual B-12, B-6 and Folic Acid

Alfred Libby, M.D., earned five doctorates and was recognized as one of the world's pioneering authorities on therapeutic nutrition. Dr. Libby's medical background in bio-chemical research includes an association with Nobel Prize Laureate, Dr. Linus Pauling.

Dr. Alfred Libby was a medical doctor and substance abuse therapy specialist who worked primarily with heroin addicts - searching for new therapies to improve the detoxification process. He was aware that most addicts were not getting the B-12 they needed through food, but he was extremely reluctant to give them any kind of injection. In the late 1970s, Dr. Libby began to explore an alternative delivery system for vitamin B-12. The goal was to bypass the stomach where this essential nutrient is not easily absorbed.

In early spring of 1980, Dr. Libby approached his colleagues with his theory that B-12 could be delivered to the bloodstream sublingually (under the tongue). Biochemists and his medical colleagues were quick to dismiss the idea. However, he was persistent and they eventually decided to give his theory a try, although they were convinced it would fail.

Six weeks later the first study was underway. Shortly after, Dr. Libby's sublingual delivery method was deemed a complete success - blood levels of B-12 increased dramatically. Dr. Libby significantly improved his formula with the addition of B-6 & Folic Acid and was issued a patent in 1984 for his sublingual process.

Dr.Alfred, Libby M.D.
Dr.Alfred, Libby M.D.


 A shortage in the supply of vitamin B12 in food that you eat will lead to
deficiency. And a deficiency in this vitamin often leads to countless diseases, such
as asthma, anemia, and various neurological disturbances, including senile
dementia and Alzheimer's disease.

Often, the best way to stop the onset of a disease is to prevent it from happening
in the first place. The same applies to vitamin B12 deficiency. Because symptoms
of vitamin B12 deficiency rarely show themselves during the early stages, it is
difficult for doctors to diagnose the deficiency.


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    • profile image

      Patty Libby 7 years ago

      Dr. Libby didn't have five doctrates, I should know I'm his daughter. The product might be great, but he was a Doctor of Chiropractic, and didn't have the degrees they portray.

    • katyzzz profile image

      katyzzz 8 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      Really informative hub, I do eat the right things but I do have bypass and other related surgeries and cirrhosis of the liver caused by a bile duct blockage from a surgical staple ( it should never have happened), I guess I should keep my eye on this as I do experience a lot of fatigue, stiffness and associated pain especially after increased activity which i am trying to overcome being the subject of my own research, the object too I guess so I must keep my eye on my diet at all times, more correctly on my nutrition, as diet has been diminished to the aim of a weight loss program.

      Please give us more of this information as although I do my own research every little bit of extra knowledge helps.

    • k@ri profile image

      Kari Poulsen 8 years ago from Ohio

      Great hub on vitamin B12! It is such an important vitamin and you are right, many, many people suffer from B12 deficiency and never realize it. Absorption by the body is poor which is why most people with pernicious anemia have to have shots.