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Posts Tagged ‘nervous system’

Neurosarcoidosis Masquerading as Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Monday, January 28th, 2013



Fatigue, memory loss, and chronic pain- these symptoms could signify vitamin B12 deficiency, or they could indicate a separate underlying condition that requires treatment beyond vitamin B12 supplementation. Neurosarcoidosis is one such illness that produces symptoms strikingly similar severe nerve damage from vitamin B12 deficiency.

Neurosarcoidosis Masquerading as Vitamin B12 Deficiency- B12 Patch

Cover your bases

You’ve been taking your vitamin B12 supplements religiously, going beyond what the doctors recommend, and still, you feel constantly tired, disoriented, and physically out-of-whack. Do you need even more B12, or is there another explanation for persistent symptoms?

…Perhaps it’s time to discuss with your doctor about other illnesses that sometimes mimic the vitamin B12 deficiency.

Here’s another scenario- Say you’ve been diagnosed with depression, lupus, or neurosarcoidosis, and after months of treatment you still haven’t seen a significant reversal of symptoms. Is it possible that you’re doctor’s missing something?

…Could the solution be as simple as setting yourself up with regulated weekly doses of vitamin B12?

In either case, you may need to be your own health advocate, as many doctors misdiagnose or fail to recognize conditions that are sometimes comorbid with or similar to vitamin B12 deficiency.


When sarcoidosis spreads inflammation to the brain and nervous system, neurosarcoidosis can produce symptoms of nerve damage very similar to those experienced by patients of pernicious anemia or other types of vitamin B12 deficiency.

The cause of sarcoidosis is unknown, but scientists speculate that it may result from an immune system dysfunction or genetic disorder.

Symptoms of neurosarcoidosis mimicking vitamin B12 deficiency include:

  • Confusion
  • Brain fog
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Memory loss
  • Dizziness
  • Vision problems
  • Altered sense of taste
  • Moodiness
  • Numbness in the arms and legs
  • Impaired ability to control arms and legs

Tests and treatment

To test, a lumbar puncture, MRI or nerve biopsy can confirm neurosarcoidosis.

There is no cure, but treatment for symptoms may involve corticosteroids, hormone replacement, antidepressants, or physical therapy.

Because of the correlation between this illness and immune system functioning, it’s highly advisable to supplement with vitamin B12, as the risk factor for developing vitamin B12 malabsorption increases with any autoimmune disorder.

Your turn!

Are you currently on a vitamin B12 regimen for neurosarcoidosis, or another form of sarcoidosis?

Do you have any questions or suggestions?  Please leave your comments below.

Share with your friends!

If you found this article helpful, then please share with your friends, family, and coworkers by email, Facebook, or Google+.

Like this? Read more:

Top Ten Signs of a Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Is Vitamin B12 Deficiency a Real Illness?

Diagnosing Vitamin B12 Deficiency and Pernicious Anemia: Top 10 Tests



Image(s) courtesy of Victor Habbick/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Ten Bites to Better Brain Power

Thursday, June 9th, 2011



We all know that following a healthy vitamin-rich diet is great for your cardio health, immune system health and a healthy complexion. But what about brain health? Here are 10 foods that make you smarter!


Foods that restore mental clarity, improve memory and maintain a healthy nervous system often contain high doses of vitamin B12.

Conversely, if you don’t get enough vitamin B12, you may start to feel sluggish, confused, and forgetful. Several studies have linked vitamin B12 deficiency with short-term memory loss, “brain fog” and age-related dementia.

Below is a list of the top 10 brain foods:

1) Oysters:


Shellfish are excellent brain foods, and some of the richest sources of vitamin B12. Oysters also contain zinc and iron, two ingredients that help with attention and memory retention. Besides oysters, other good B12-rich shellfish delicacies are shrimp, mussels and crab

Vitamin B12 for Healthy Hair, Skin and Nails

2) Seafood:


If you don’t enjoy shellfish, you might find fresh fish fillets more to your liking, which are also rich sources of brain-boosting vitamin B12 and Omega-3 fatty acids. The best catches for B12 are salmon, tuna and herring. 

B12 Deficiency can really Get on your Nerves

3) Eggs:


Though eggs have cholesterol, they are also good sources of vitamin B12. Having an egg or two for breakfast will keep your doctor happy and help you maintain healthy brain mass.

Don’t be tempted to throw out the egg yolks, either; they contain choline, an essential ingredient for producing healthy brain cells.  

Avoiding Vitamin B12 Deficiency while Breast Feeding

4) Leafy greens:


Dark green salads such as spinach and cabbage are high in vitamin B6, folate and iron, all of which are essential for producing red blood cells, supporting cardiovascular health, and maintaining cognitive integrity. 

8 Rockin’ Meatless Grill Recipes for Memorial’s Day

5) Curry:


Indian curries contain turmeric, a bright yellow spice that owes its antioxidant properties to curcumin.

Scientists believe that turmeric spices are healthful for the brain, heart, and insulin response.

Feed your Brain Something You’ll never Forget

6)  Berries:


Black, red and blue-skinned berries are powerful antioxidants that fight free radicals and maintain a healthy response to inflammation.

Additionally, berries such as raspberries, blackberries, blueberries and strawberries contain flavonoids, an ingredient that enhances memory skills.

7) Nuts and seeds:


Whole, raw, unprocessed nuts and seeds contain essential nutrients such as Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, folate, vitamin E, and vitamin B6; these are excellent for cognitive functioning, boosting memory and balancing the mood.

Eaten in moderation, all species of nuts and seeds are healthful, such as almonds, cashews, Brazil nuts, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds and sunflower seeds.  

6 Great Diets for Autistic Children

8) Tea:


The ancient Chinese have always held that sipping steaming mugs of green or black tea throughout the day improves mental clarity and fights fatigue. Today, we attribute the benefits of tea leaves to catechins, a chemical which is valued for its ability to support brain functioning. 

10 Most Tempting Vegan Ice Cream Recipes

9) Whole grains:


Wheat germ, bran, brown rice, oats and barley are all high in folate, which help the brain by improving blood flow. They are also high in vitamin B6, which is also helpful for maintaining memory retention in people with dementia. B12 Deficiency: Don’t Ignore the Symptoms

10) Cocoa:


Ground cocoa is high in antioxidants, which are essential for brain health. Avoid fatty milk chocolate in favor of extra dark, 99% cocoa-rich bars, such as Lindt Excellence.

Also read:

Boost Energy Now! 20 Practical Tips for Fighting Fatigue



7 Reasons You Have Brain Fog…And What to do About It

Tuesday, May 31st, 2011



“Fibro Haze” isn’t an acid rock band from the 70s-  fibromyalgia brain fog is what happens when when your physical, emotional, and biochemical elements get together and decide to wreak havoc on your nervous system.

7 Reasons You Have Brain Fog…And What to do About It


Oftentimes linked with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), the symptoms of fibromyalgia are confusion, tiredness and forgetfulness.

Do you have trouble remembering somebody’s name about one minute after she introduced herself?

Do you often forget where you parked your car, or which side of the mall you entered from?

How’s your math- do you have trouble adding up simple calculations in your head?

When you try to read, do you get distracted by every outside noise? 

Unfortunately, there are a lot of different factors which can cause fibromyalgia and fatigue, making it all that much more difficult to get to the root of the problem.

Below are the most common causes for fibro fog:
  • 1) Insomnia: If you’re not getting enough sleep, then it’s all downhill from here. Sleep disorders make it difficult for your body to produce enough serotonin, which is important for memory. Stick to a rigid sleep schedule, and don’t spend time on the computer less than 1 hour before bedtime. Try to avoid long naps in the middle of the day; twenty minutes should be your limit. If fibromyalgia nerve pain is what’s keeping you up nights, then test out an orthopedic support pillow, test-drive a different mattress, or ask your doctor about safe, gentle sleeping aids. B12 Deficiency Linked to Cognitive Decline, and more
  • 2) Emotional upset caused by nerve pain: Chronic pain takes up a lot of your brain’s attention. It’s hard to focus on all the things that are happening around you when inside, your nerves are on red alert from constant pain signals. Some prescription pain medicines are helpful for alleviating aches. Ice compresses or heating pads are effective, as well. Many fibromyalgia sufferers are also finding that practicing tai chi helps relax their nerves and soothe muscular soreness. Why More Fibromyalgia Patients are Taking Tai Chi
  • 3) Stress, anxiety and depression: Chronic stress and anxiety attacks  lower your  immunity and tire out your nervous system. If you can’t remove yourself from a stressful situation, then learn to cope- your health depends on it. Try yoga, deep breathing, light exercise and a healthy diet. If necessary, ask your doctor about antidepressants which help to prevent panic disorder. Chronic Depression, Chronic Pain- It’s All the Same, say Experts
  • 4) History of child abuse: Recent studies have noted a strong link between people who suffer from fibromyalgia symptoms and personal history of physical or mental abuse.
  • 5) Family history: Ask your family members if chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic pain or fibromyalgia symptoms run in the family. If anything, at least it will help solve the mystery. Teens are No Stranger to Chronic Fatigue
  • 6) Diet: An increasing number of CFS and fibromyalgia patients are finding that switching to a gluten-free diet has helped reduce some of the fibromyalgia symptoms, such as stomach problems, headaches and fatigue. Try seeking out some great non-gluten breads, mixes and sweets in the health food section of your supermarket, and see what happens! Can a Gluten-Free Diet Ease Symptoms of Fibromyalgia?
  • 7) Vitamin B12 deficiency: There is a strong correlation between fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue and vitamin B12 deficiency. Scientists haven’t determined exactly why this phenomenon exists, but they have proven that fibro patients who take B12 supplements experience a surge in stamina and overall well-being. Suffering from Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue? B12 to the Rescue!

Also read:

100 Best Sites for Fibromyalgia or Chronic Fatigue Information

How to Tell if Chronic Pain is Fibromyalgia: 18 Pressure Points


Folic Acid and B12: Your Nerves Need Both to Thrive

Thursday, March 24th, 2011



Folic acid (vitamin B-6), the synthetic version of folate, has been instrumental in reducing the number of neural tube birth defects, ever since the US government  mandated that all breads and other grain products be infused with this essential B vitamin; pregnant women are strongly advised to include folate supplementation in their diet.

But folic acid alone is ineffective in nourishing the nervous system; for that, it requires help from vitamin B12.

Folic acid + B12 = healthy nerves

A study found that both folic acid and vitamin B12, taken together, produced the most beneficial results in regards to nerve function.

  • A Tufts University study examined 1,459 individuals over the age of 60.
  • 25% had vitamin B12 deficiency, and likewise scored poorly on mental acuity testing.
  • Of the participants who has B12 deficiency, the ones who also had folic acid deficiency turned out the worst scores- 5 times below the average for healthy individuals of that age.
  • The elderly are particularly at risk because of their inability to utilize B12 vitamins naturally.
  • According to the Journal of American Medical Association, folic acid and vitamin B12 taken together may be used to treat heart disease and reduce the number of related deaths in the US.
  • Clinical research has shown that folic acid is effective for reducing homocysteine levels, a precursor to heart disease, but that the addition of vitamin B12 accounts for an extra 7% success rate.

Vitamin B12 occurs naturally in meat, fish, dairy and egg products. Vegans and vegetarians must rely on B12 supplements in order to avoid B12 deficiency.

Folic acid is found in all cereals, baked goods and other grain products, ever since the US government ruled back in 1998 that it be included in order to prevent birth defects.


Science Daily, the Journal of American Medical Association, Oprah.com

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