Athletic Support– Cofactors for efficient energy metabolism from food; Synthesizing red blood cells requires B9 (folate) and B12; Deficiencies in various B vitamins may slow healing in sports injuries.
Neurological– Vitamin B12 deficiency is common in psychiatric disorders. Depression may be a manifestation of B12 deficiency. Vitamin B12 deficiency can be implicated in migraine pathogenesis as B12 plays a role in nitric oxide breakdown. B12 is also involved in managing various kinds of pain through its role with serotonin. Low B12 impairs methylation which can lead to neurological damage.
Fatigue– Necessary for converting food into energy.
Gastrointestinal– Vitamin B12 supplementation has been shown to improve gastrointestinal complaints in some patients with dyspepsia (indigestion). Proton-pump inhibitors (antacids) often deplete B12 as decreasing acids also decrease intrinsic factor, a crucial component for B12 absorption. B12 is also involved as a cofactor in deriving energy from food. Long term deficiency can contribute to low energy levels.
Anemia– Chronically low B12 can lead to pernicious anemia where red blood cells do not divide normally and are larger than normal. Pernicious anemia results in the inability to produce enough red blood cells which can lead to extreme tiredness and weakness. Digestive and neurological issues are common with all anemias. Low levels of B12 can also lead to slower healing of bodily injury and slower recovery.
Liver/Methylation– B12 is a key enzyme needed in the production of SAMe one of the body’s most important methyl donor that heavily influences our detox pathways. B12 is also involved in other enzymes such as methionine synthase which initiates the methylation pathway.
Sleep– Normalizes circadian rhythms and can be used therapeutically to help with insomnia.
Things that lower B12:
- Medication (especially acid blockers)
- Low acid in the stomach and diet can influence absorption