Vitamin B12 and requirements

Vitamin B12 , also known as “the energy vitamin” due to its fundamental energizing power for the functioning of the organism, is cyanocobalamin , the term with which this B group vitamin is commonly identified . Scarcely present in the body, it nevertheless represents the most stable form in which it is marketed in common drugs and  food supplements . The daily requirement of vitamin B12 is decidedly modest, but still essential for health. The daily dose required for adults is approximately 2 – 2.5 µg, while the deposits present in the body amount to approximately 4 mg. During pregnancy and breastfeeding , it is advisable to increase the requirement for the well-being of the mother and the fetus .

Vitamin B12 deficiency

Vitamin B12 deficiency is the primary cause of a disease known as  pernicious anemia . The onset of this disease is due not so much to the deficiency of the mineral, but rather to that of erythrocytes. The vitamin B12 complex  is in fact fundamental for the synthesis of  red blood cells  by the  bone marrow . Precisely this essential function is particularly well known in the world of sport, where cyanocobalamin is considered, together with iron  and folic acid , in products effective in resolving cases of ” sports pseudoanemia “.

These are the causes of vitamin E deficiency .

Vitamin B12 deficiency: the causes

The causes of vitamin B deficiency can be multiple: both nutritional and psychophysical. Its absorption is very often affected by the use of medicines such as sleeping pills , birth control pills and antibiotics . Vitamin B is also minimally synthesized by bacteria present in the intestinal flora . The body is able to store it only in small quantities, which are immediately used and quickly eliminated, so constant replacement and daily supply is necessary.

When absorption is hindered or facilitated . In the case of severe stress , or bacterial infections , for example, a significant decrease in vitamin B12 occurs. Absorption is instead favored by vitamins C and E, calcium and iron. The excessive consumption of coffee, sugar and alcohol also causes a significant drop in cobalamin in the body , which also hinders the absorption of vitamins B1 and B2.



  • Chronic fatigue . Vitamin B12 plays an important role in preventing a type of anemia called megaloblastic anemia , characterized by large red blood cells and deficiency of folate, or vitamin B12. The condition commonly leads to symptoms such as tiredness and weakness. Additionally, cobalamin (vitamin B12) deficiencies can result in decreased energy and exercise tolerance, along with fatigue and mild shortness of breath .
  • Sarsa concentration. Several scientific studies have linked vitamin B12 deficiencies with cognitive impairment, including manifestations such as brain fog , or cognitive fog , lack of concentration, poor memory, and even an increased risk of developing conditions such as Alzheimer ‘s . People with higher levels of vitamin B12 appear to have less brain shrinkage as they age. Taking vitamin B12 when you are deficient can be helpful in boosting memory, mental clarity, overall energy, and depressed mood.
  • Tingling in the hands and feet. A pins and needles sensation felt when the foot is about to fall asleep: if this happens often it could be a sign of a vitamin B12 deficiency . Since the vitamin plays an essential role in the nervous system , when lacking, it can lead to  demyelination of the nerves of the central nervous system . In other words, the protective covering of the nerves can become damaged, leading to this tingling sensation .

Foods rich in vitamin B12

The  sources  of vitamin B12 are essentially of animal origin (liver,  milk  and derivatives,  beef , eggs ); for this reason the risks of deficiency are more concrete in  vegetarians . A diet of this type followed by a pregnant mother can be very dangerous for the unborn child. Liver  , by far, is the food of animal origin with the highest concentration of vitamin B12, followed by kidney , muscle meat , fish , but it is also contained in egg yolk  and, in smaller quantities, in  cheeses , especially mature ones.

It must be said, on the other hand, that B12 is the only  water-soluble vitamin  of which there are important reserves in the body which, concentrated at the  liver level , are able to cover its needs for long periods of time (up to three – five years).

It should be remembered that in food preparation , heat and boiling can destroy a large part of the vitamins present in fresh food. Vitamin B12 itself is lost in good quantities during the refining process of flours and cereals , but also during the conservation and sterilization of industrially prepared foods . In cases of vitamin B deficiency, it is preferable to take whole and unrefined products, and fresh ones, therefore not industrially processed.

Seven foods to integrate into a healthy and balanced diet for the correct need for vitamin B12 :

  1. Nutritional yeast
  2. Fortified cereals
  3. Salmon
  4. Tuna
  5. Egg
  6. Fortified milk
  7. Beef