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Posts Tagged ‘sources of vitamin b12’

Here’s Your Brain on B12 Deficiency- Memory Loss and Aging

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011

 

 

The elderly need to increase their intake of vitamin B12, in order to avoid memory loss from vitamin B12 deficiency.  Brain loss caused by Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia is sometimes a part of the aging process, but by getting enough vitamin B12 in your blood, you can prevent suffering the symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency.

HERE’S YOUR BRAIN ON B12 DEFICIENCY- MEMORY LOSS AND AGING, WWW.B12PATCH.COM

Chicago study links low levels of vitamin B12 with memory loss

A 2011 study that focused on 121 community-dwelling participants of the Chicago Health and Aging Project found a strong correlation between vitamin B12 deficiency and memory loss.  Scientists measured methylmalonate levels to determine vitamin B12 deficiency.

  • They found a direct relationship between low levels of vitamin B12, reduced brain volume, and decreased cognitive skills, such as loss of short-term memory.
  • Scientists noted poorer memory skills, slower thinking processes, and impaired comprehension skills as attributes associated with elevated methylmalonate levels- an indicator of vitamin B12 deficiency.
  • Also considered were plasma homocysteine levels, which scientists also connected with loss of brain mass.  High levels of homocysteine are common in vitamin B12 deficiency.
  • Scientists concluded that methylmalonate, an indicator of vitamin B12 deficiency, has a direct impact on brain volume, and that vitamin B12 has multiple benefits on brain chemistry beyond just memory skills.
  • In 2008, a UK study conducted by the University of Oxford produced similar results; namely, that vitamin B12 deficiency is a likely cause of brain atrophy, dementia, and short-term memory loss among the elderly.

HERE’S YOUR BRAIN ON B12 DEFICIENCY- MEMORY LOSS AND AGING, WWW.B12PATCH.COM

How to keep Vitamin B12 Deficiency from Shrinking your Brain

For the elderly, eating foods with vitamin B12 isn’t enough

HERE’S YOUR BRAIN ON B12 DEFICIENCY- MEMORY LOSS AND AGING, WWW.B12PATCH.COMEating plenty of foods rich in vitamin B12 is always a good idea; such foods include protein sources like beef, chicken, fish, eggs, milk, and cheese. But for the elderly, the problem isn’t really eating enough sources of vitamin B12, but rather digesting them.  Part of the aging process involves making less stomach acids that are necessary for absorbing vitamin B12 from foods.  As a result, many elderly individuals who include meat in their diet still run a high risk for getting B12 deficiency.

Unless blood tests indicate healthy levels of vitamin B12, senior citizens must supplement with vitamin B-12 (cobalamin) with a routine prescribed B12 shot in order to avoid the symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency.

Memory loss in B12 deficiency for the young and old

It isn’t just the elderly who should be concerned with memory loss- short-term memory loss is one of many symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency, regardless of age.

HERE’S YOUR BRAIN ON B12 DEFICIENCY- MEMORY LOSS AND AGING, WWW.B12PATCH.COM

Vitamin B12- How much do you need?

Other symptoms of dangerously low B12 levels are:

  • Chronic fatigue
  • Depression
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Anxiety
  • Paranoia
  • Aggressive behavior
  • Hallucinations
  • Balance problems
  • Poor muscular control
  • Numbness or tingling in hands, arms, feet, and legs
  • Sore, red swollen tongue
  • Altered taste perception

Long-term exposure to vitamin B12 deficiency could result in severe neurological damage, pernicious anemia, increased risk for heart attack, stroke, and osteoporosis.

Read more about vitamin B12 deficiency and memory loss:

12 Ways to Avoid Alzheimer’s Disease

FDA Approves Brain Scan to Detect Alzheimer’s Disease

Adult ADHD Could Lead to Dementia

Sources:

Low Vitamin B12 Linked to Smaller Brains and Cognitive Decline

Vitamin B12 Levels Linked to Memory Skills and Brain Size

Low Vitamin B12 May Speed Brain Shrinkage

Low Vitamin B12 Linked to Smaller Brain Size

Elevated Plasma Homocysteine Is Associated with Increased Brain Atrophy Rates in Older Subjects with Mild Hypertension

Vitamin B12, cognition, and brain MRI measures- A cross-sectional examination

Vitamin B12 status and rate of brain volume loss in community-dwelling elderly

Image credits, from top:

Was a bee, Sean.lewis29, Ambro, photostock

Food Sources For Vitamin B12

Tuesday, February 6th, 2007

The Need For Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 is required for cell division and blood formation in the body. Neither plants nor animals can produce vitamin B12; it is produced by bacteria. Animals get the vitamin B12 they need by consuming food which contains the vitamin B12 producing bacteria. The plants we eat do not contain vitamin B12 unless the bacteria are present or vitamin B12 is added to them. Therefore, vegetarians need to look for fortified foods or supplements to get enough vitamin B12 in their diet. Though the daily amount of vitamin B12 needed is very small, vitamin B12 deficiency is a very serious problem that can lead eventually to anemia and irreversible nerve damage. Prudent vegetarians will include sources of vitamin B12 in their diet. Vitamin B12 is especially important during pregnancy and lactation, and for infants and children.

Sources of Vitamin B12 For Vegetarians

Some sources of vitamin B12 are vitamin B12 fortified soymilk, vitamin B12 fortified wheat gluten, and soybeans. These vegetarian products are often made to resemble meat, fish, or poultry. Also, there are vitamin supplements available that do not contain animal products. Vegetarians who choose to use a vitamin B12 supplement, either as a single supplement or in a multivitamin, must remember to use the supplements regularly for them to be effective. In order to meet the body’s needs, one should take a daily vitamin B12 supplement of approximately 5-10 micrograms, or a weekly vitamin B12 supplement of approximately 2000 micrograms. 

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