Vitamin B12 Cure

Vitamin B12 (aka Cobalamin) is an important vitamin (microbe actually) for a number of bodily functions including the nervous system, blood cell formation,  combating homocysteine (this nasty puppy gives you strokes, heart attacks and alzheimers) and skin/hair health.  In fact a number of B vitamins (especially folic acid and vitamin B6) are also good at combating homocysteine.  B12 is also one of the only mechanisms by which your body can get the mineral colbat into its system.

Vitamin B12 deficiency tends to be a problem for vegans, alcoholics, those suffering from stress and older people with digestive issues.  To a lesser extent smoking, antacids, stress, pregnancy and taking oral contraceptives (the pill) can cause b12 deficiency.  B12 deficiency is actually fairly widespread as 1 in 4 adults in the US is deficient and 1 in 2 adults has suboptimal levels in their blood stream.  Defficiencies can take 5 to 10 years to develop and lead to permanent nerve damage among many other problems.

Word to the wise...  Certain foods block or interfere with B12 absorption.  These include soy, spirulina, certain forms of anaesthesia, coffee, acidic foods (like meats), high fiber foods and certain diabetes drugs.  Onions, musterd oil, strong radishes, antacids, laxitives, metformin for diabetes, and garlic can also interfere with b12 formation in the intestines (which some argue the body uses).  Certain multi-vitamins with their iron, copper and vitamin C can do a number on B12 as well.

For those suffering from b12 deficiencies, coconut oil is a nice supplement as it combats helicobacter pylori which is often associated with b12 deficiency.

Sources of Vitamin B12 are somewhat of a contentious issue...   It can't be produced by plants or animals and can only be made by bacteria.  Most meat sources are a good source of B12 (especially liver and fish).  To a lesser degree beef and dairy products are a good source of B12.  Pasterisation destroys some of the B12 and damages some other proteins B12 needs to be absorbed so unpasteurized dairy products may be preferred.  Drying (like dried milk) can also lesson the effectiveness of B12.  Eggs surprising aren't a great source of b12 and some argue they interfere with b12  absorption.  Some foods like chicken provide b12 but not that much.

Non-animal sources of B12 are tough to come by.   Some have argued that tempeh, certain sea vegetables and certain algaes contain B12 that the body can use, but from what I've read this is generally not excepted in the scientific community although there is a bit of back of forth on this issue.    A surprise source of b12 is soil and indirectly unwashed fruits and vegetables.  Turns out soil is swimming with B12 (well b12 microbes).  This could be an explanation of why some vegans in India supposedly don't suffer B12 deficiencies.

One of the most controversial arguments is whether the human intestine can produce B12 that the body can absorb from the intestines (like cows).  The common argument has been no because the b12 formation takes place too far down in the intestinal tract, but some research has indicated otherwise.  In which case (if true) B12 deficicies can be caused by a unhealthy digestive system that isn't absorbing the B12 (antibiotics and candida can be key problems here and a candida cleanse would be recommended).  The other arguement b12 defficiencies are really colbat defficiencies to a certain degree.  Plant based foods that have cobalt include cabbage, figs, sea vegitables, lettice, spinache,mushrooms and legumes.  Due to topsoil depletion many vegetables are no longer that great of a source of cobalt.

Many foods (especially natural products) are fortified with B12 and this can be a decent dietary source.  One should probably not depend solely on fortefied foods though...   Click here for a story of vegan who gets in trouble because he thought his nutrional yeast had B12.   For vegans it is a good idea to get B12 from supplements and by consuming B12 fortified foods.  

When shopping for supliments there are a number of things to keep in mind.   For supliments be wary of B12 that comes with most multi-vitamins as the b12 interacts with the vitamin c, iron, and copper to create B12 analogous (fake B12 that actually can make your body more defficient in B12).  This was noted by Victor Herbert, a noted B12 researcher.  Many argue even if the B12 from the oral supplement reach the stomach very little gets absorbed into the blood stream.  This is why sublingual tablets are preferred (like this puppy).  Because B12 can be aborbed under the toung (or better in the side of the cheek), this is the preferred way to recieve B12 (outside of shots) to ensure the stomach doesn't damage the B12.  A new alterntive now are b12 sprays that people are using as energy boosters as an alternitive to coffee.  Dr. Mercola (recomended by Kevin Trudeau) really likes this idea. Although some argue these nano-particles harm the lungs in which case sublingual tablets would be best (I don't know). 

B12 comes in two major forms...  Cyanocobalamin and non-cyanocobalamin.   Cyanocobalamin is cheaper, has a longer shelf-life, and more common, but is widely considered to be inferior to non-cyanocobalamin forms of B12 (because the latter is active) when it comes to absorbtion and retention.  Look for non-cyanocobalamin forms like  methylcobalamin or dibencozide.  I've seen conflicting information but methylcobalamin is probably the better bet over dibencozide.  Some suppliments have both.

B12 is a treatment for a number of ailments primarily those concerning the nervous system (like alzeimers, depression memory, neropathy, pychosis).  B12 is also a great source of energy (lack of it causes anemia) and and helps with athletic endurance.  Homocystein (which causes strokes, heart attacks and alzeimers) is effectively reduced by B12 as well.  The list of what B12 can heal or help with is actually quite extensive.


Applicable for Vitamin B12

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