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Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Women's Health News: B12 Balance is Important, The Facts About Abnormal Levels of B12

The balance of B12 in our diet is very important. We have to consider: intake in diet and vitamins, medications or substances that can interfere with B12, and how to know if we have enough B12 in our system. B12 is an important vitamin. Women who have diets that include meat and dairy typically will have abundant B12, however vegetarians, especially vegans may have to take synthetic Vitamin B12 to get enough. the B12 that our body receives and stores comes from food processing in the stomach and small intestine, through a fairly complex set of physiologic steps. Since this begins in the stomach, many gastric conditions can lead to problems with B12 absorption. Once B12 is, however, actually absorbed past one's daily needs, the liver is where B12 is stored long term and the liver stores B12 so effectively, it may actually take years before you are actually deficient if you were eating meat and dairy and then stop. However, many common health practices and treatments can risk abnormally low levels of B12. Medications such as PPIs for GERD, and metformin, a commonly prescribed diabetes medicine, can reduce B12 blood levels. As many as 1/3 of metformin users can develop deficiencies. Interestingly the matcha in green tea is so potent, it can actually reduce your levels of Bqw. Match is 20-30 times as potent as actual green tea and the B12 levels in ma Anemia is produced by B12 deficiency, and many of the symptoms are then the consequences of anemia, which would include fatigue, some neurological symptoms such as memory issues, being irritable and in severe enough cases that are long term, more severe brain nerve degeneration can occur. Lab testing is more than just getting a B12 test, your complete blood count can show abnormalities, the liver may show abnormalities, and circulating levels of iron can be off as well as other abnormalities. So at your yearly visit, discuss your diet and if you may be at risk for this condition. 

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