Vitamin B12 is a nutrient that helps your body's nerves and blood cells function properly, as well as helping you make DNA, which is the genetic material of all your cells. It also helps prevent megaloblastic anemia, which causes you to feel tired and weak.
Vitamin B12 foods like meat and eggs are naturally fortified with vitamin B12, while plant foods do not contain it, unless they are fortified. You can get the recommended daily amount of vitamin B12 from a variety of foods, such as:
🔹Fish, meat, poultry, eggs, milk, and other dairy products
🔹Clams and beef liver
🔹Some breakfast cereals, nutritional yeasts, and other food products are fortified with vitamin B12
Very low levels of vitamin B-12 can result in serious complications, including:
🔹Losing sense of taste and smell
🔹Fast of irregular heartbeat
🔹Shortness of breath
🔹High levels of homocysteine (increases heart disease and stroke)
A severe, long-term B-12 deficiency can cause:
🔹Loss of mobility
🔹Memory loss with dementia seizures
A deficit of vitamin B-12 can also result in peripheral neuropathy, which can cause numbness, weakness, pain, and paresthesia (a burning or itchy sensation). It most frequently affects the arms, hands, legs, and feet.
The conditions associated with peripheral neuropathy are quite similar to those associated with diabetes neuropathy, also known as nerve damage caused by long-term high blood glucose levels.
In addition to affecting the arms, legs and feet, Diabetic neuropathy can also affect the gastrointestinal system (GI).
If you are experiencing neuropathic issues, consult a health care professional to determine if the issue is diabetes-related or caused by a B-12 deficiency.
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