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Posts Tagged ‘vitamin b12 and alzheimer’s disease’

Can B12 Beat Alzheimer’s? Neurology Says it can…

Monday, May 7th, 2012



According to latest research, vitamin B12 -rich foods like fish are influential in maintaining healthy brain mass, the loss of which is a precursor to Alzheimer’s disease.

Can B12 Beat Alzheimer’s? Neurology Says it can…

Why Vitamin B12?

You always knew that fish was “brain food,” but probably didn’t know why.  The answer could be in vitamin B12, a nutrient that occurs naturally in foods like beef, salmon, clams, and cheese.

Vitamin B12 (cobalamin) helps to protect your nerve cells, supports DNA synthesis, and aids in the breaking down of homocysteine, a hormone linked with heart disease and stroke. 

So, when people don’t get enough vitamin B12 in their diet, or are simply unable to digest vitamin B12 from foods, they begin the suffer debilitating symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency, leading to nerve damage, loss of energy, and increased risk for heart attack, stroke, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency

  • Constant fatigue
  • Decreased short-term memory
  • Can B12 Beat Alzheimer’s? Neurology Says it can…Dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Irritability
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Hallucinations
  • Paranoia
  • Painful tingling and numbness in the hands and feet
  • Difficulty walking
  • Frequent clumsiness
  • Sore, burning tongue
  • Altered taste perception
  • Tinnitus (ear ringing)
  • Restless leg syndrome

B12 and Alzheimer’s disease

A 2011 study published in Neurology on senior citizens’ diet and Alzheimer’s disease risks  found a direct correlation between vitamin consumption, including vitamin B12, and healthy cognitive skills, including memory, problem-solving, and reasoning.

They found that senior citizens who ate foods rich in vitamin B12, C, D, and E scored better in cognitive tests than their peers who didn’t sustain sufficient levels of vitamin B12.

Additionally, MRI brain scans confirmed that vitamin B12 directly affects brain health, as brain scans of senior citizens who had normal or elevated vitamin B12 levels revealed healthy brain mass, while elderly individuals who had poor vitamin B12 levels demonstrated much less brain volume, and in many cases brain shrinkage associated with onset of Alzheimer’s disease.

Read more here: Here’s Your Brain on B12 Deficiency- Memory Loss and Aging

Can B12 Beat Alzheimer’s? Neurology Says it can…

Where can I get vitamin B12?

Most people get plenty of vitamin B12 from eating a diet that includes lean beef and chicken, fresh seafood, cheese, yogurt, and eggs.  Unless you follow a strict vegan diet, you probably consume enough vitamin B12 to avoid becoming deficient.

But not necessarily.

A staggering number of people don’t get enough vitamin B12, resulting in one of the most widespread nutritional deficiencies since rickets and scurvy.  

And the cause has nothing to do with diet.

In fact, so many illnesses and lifestyle choices may interfere with vitamin B12 absorption, that the only way to be certain you’re in the clear is to take a blood screening for vitamin B12 levels.

Risk factors for vitamin B12 deficiency:

  • Family history of vitamin B12 deficiency or pernicious anemia
  • History of autoimmune disorders such as fibromyalgia, Crohn’s disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), and Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Presence of intrinsic factor (IF) antibody
  • Previous gastrointestinal surgery, including gastric bypass
  • Chronic vomiting
  • Damage to the stomach lining
  • Usage of metformin for diabetes
  • Usage of protein pump inhibitors (PPIs) for GERD
  • Old age

If your vitamin B12 levels are low despite eating meat, fish, and chicken, then you most likely can’t digest vitamin B12 in the stomach.  Your only alternative to avoid vitamin B12 deficiency is to deposit vitamin B12 directly into the blood stream.

Popular methods for non-dietary vitamin B12 supplementation are vitamin B12 shots and (less effective) sublingual vitamin B12 tablets.

Read more about B12 and the brain

Can Vitamin B12 Deficiency cause Dementia?

Aging begins at 45- Tips on how to Prevent Early Memory Loss

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smokedsalmon, Ambro, vichie81

Alzheimer’s Disease and Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Thursday, April 8th, 2010

There is a strong correlation between the incidence of Alzheimer’s Disease and a Vitamin B12 deficiency. This is the conclusion reached based on a study that was performed by Dr. Hui-Xin Wang and colleagues, and published in the Journal Neurology in 2001.

For purposes of this study, a random sample of 370 people living in Sweden was utilized. These 370 participants were aged 75 years or older and were mentally sound. These participants were not supplementing their diets with B12 or folate.

The researchers measured the blood levels of Vitamin 12 and folate of the 370 participants at the beginning of the study. These men and women were then followed for three years to see who would develop Alzheimer’s Disease and who would not.

The participants in the study who initially had either low blood levels of Vitamin B12 or folate were twice as likely to develop Alzheimer’s Disease than those whose blood levels of these vitamins were found to be within the range of normal.

As a result of this study, Dr. Hui-Xin Wang and colleagues concluded that Vitamin B12 and folate levels should be monitored in the elderly population. Doing so will help prevent members of this population from developing Alzheimer’s Disease.

Alzheimer’s disease and Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Monday, January 11th, 2010

Vitamin B12 deficiency can turn into a debilitating disease with ongoing repercussions, nothing is as simply prevented as largely ignored. Vitamin B12 deficiency often initially presents itself as fatigue, in today’s busy world it is often chalked up to lifestyle and ignored, over time the results can be devastating and irreversible.

Neurological Implications of Vitamin B12 Deficiency

With the initial onset of Vitamin B12 deficiency the neurological implications may not be immediately obvious. The symptoms are usually dismissed as being stress related. The initial neurological implications can be very mild, a change in mood, some occasional forgetfulness an increase in irritability – all symptoms that can also be attributed to stress and other lifestyle issues. Over time the symptoms may increase to include depression, memory loss, dementia and psychosis.

The treatment for the Vitamin B12 deficiency is Vitamin B12 shots that will cure the underlying deficiency but may not help to regain the mental faculties that were lost during the deficiency period.

There are some implications that prolonged Vitamin B12 deficiency can result in permanent damage to the nervous system and permanently effect brain function.

Alzheimer’s disease

Alzheimer’s disease is a debilitating disease that effects many millions of people around the country. Primarily Alzheimer’s is thought of a disease that effect older folks, but in cases of early onset it can affect people as young as thirty five. Little is known about this debilitating disease other than the damage that is causes to the brain and the lives that it destroys.

There is no sue reason as to why Alzheimer’s sets in or what the cause is. There are several theories, one of which seems to correlate a relationship between Vitamin B12 deficiency and the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. The testing and research is still in the early stages but it is hypothesized that a prolonged Vitamin B12 deficiency can contribute to the onset of Alzheimer’s disease with the most radical theory hypothesizing that Alzheimer’s disease is actually caused by Vitamin B12 deficiency.

There seems to be a strong correlation between those that have been determined to have suffered from Vitamin B12 deficiency and a high rate of the incidence of Alzheimer’s disease.

There have been cases where a patient was diagnosed with the early stages of Alzheimer’s when in fact it was a Vitamin B12 deficiency.

Vitamin B12 deficiency causes nerve damage over time and some of those nerves that are damaged are located in the brain, the damage is irreversible and likely cannot be corrected. There are scientists that have set out to prove that the relationship between Vitamin B12 deficiency and Alzheimer’s disease is beyond coincidence and is actually a causal relationship.

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