Vitamin B12 – it’s another one of those mystery vitamins and minerals we hear about, but never really know what it does. So we’re cutting the chase – what is vitamin B12, what benefits does it have, and do you need a vitamin B12 supplement?
What is Vitamin B12?
So, what is exactly are B12 vitamins? Well, not to be too technical, but B12 vitamin is a chemical compound containing mineral cobalt. B12 is found naturally in animal products – fish, clams, poultry, dairy and meat. Vitamin B12 helps with the functioning of the central nervous system, as well as DNA production and red blood cell development – all extremely important processes.
But arguably one of its most important roles is in cell metabolism. What does that even mean? Well, it is basically creating energy for your body. Athletes and regular gymgoers require more daily energy, and so require more B12. That’s where B12 supplements come in.
What are the Signs of a Vitamin B12 Deficiency?
You may notice muscle weakness and fatigue which may affect any exercise you do. More serious effects include weight loss, mood disturbances, intestinal issues, infertility, and anaemia.
There have also been studies linking B12 deficiency to depression and changes in your brain causing sensations such as tingling in the hands and feet.
How do I know If I need a Vitamin B12 Supplement?
Even if you are having some or all the types of foods mentioned above (fish, meat, dairy, etc.) you may still require a supplement to meet your needs. If you follow a vegan, vegetarian, modular or other kind of diet that avoids animal products, you should consider a Vitamin B12 supplement. B12 is not found in many other foods, especially plant-based foods. Mushrooms are an exception, but how many of those or you chowing down on each day?
Older adults, pregnant women, people who take medication for diabetes or heartburn, people with gastrointestinal disorders, people who have had gastrointestinal surgery and babies breastfed by vegan women are also at risk of B12 deficiency.
If you start experiencing symptoms, such as persistent muscle weakness and quick fatiguing during exercise, you should consult your doctor. You may require a B12 Vitamin supplement, or another food that is fortified with B12.
What are the Benefits of B12 Vitamin Supplements?
Even those with a more standard diet might not be getting the Vitamin B12 they need. If you’re feeling sluggish, experiencing low muscle endurance and strength, that may be a sign that you have a deficiency. If that is the case, Vitamin B12 supplements will help:
• Increase your vitality.
• Increase your strength and energy.
• Improve your brain function and memory.
• Improve your skin tone and prevent jaundice (having a yellow tinge to your skin).
• Improve your heart health.
• Improve your eyesight.
• Improve your intestinal health.
Vitamin B12 Supplement use is common among adults, with nearly 1 in 4 men and nearly 1 in 3 women taking B12 vitamins supplements. You can always speak to your doctor to find out how a Vitamin B12 supplement will benefit you.
What much Vitamin B12 do you need? Can you have too much?
An average adult requires 2.4 micrograms a day. If you don’t have your microgram measuring spoon handy, nutritional panels on supplements and other foods will tell you how much B12 they contain.
There are no health risks to having too much Vitamin B12 because the body flushes out any excess with urine. Therefore, there are no harmful side effects to trying a B12 supplement.
What are the best B12 Vitamin Supplements?
Straight Vitamin B12 Supplement tablets are available. However, many other supplements also come laden with B12 vitamins to maximise your energy, strength and vitality. These include protein powders, fat burners and pre-workouts.
Vegan and vegetarian options are available including organic hemp proteins and nutritional yeast.
Vitamin B12 Supplements
You can deliver B12 straight to your body to use using lozenge and tablet supplements. Here are some good options that will help meet your body’s needs:
Vitamin B12 Weight-Loss Supplements and Fat Burners
Fat burners and weight-loss supplements contain B12 to help with energy during your workouts, assist with cell repair, nervous system function and boost immunity. Here are our best recommendations:
Vitamin B12 Pre-Workouts
Vitamin B12-fortified pre-workouts are designed to maximise your strength and endurance through your sets. Indeed, it is an essential ingredient in any pre-workout worth its salt, due to B12’s importance in energy production and metabolism. Here are our best picks for B12-fortified pre-workouts:
Vitamin B12 Protein Powder Supplements
Premium protein formulas contain Vitamin B12 to allow muscle-building and repair. Here are the best protein supplements containing vitamin B12:
Vitamin B12 Vegan Supplements and Other Sources
Some proteins and supplements designed with vegan and other diets in mind provide great sources for B12 vitamins. They are:
B12 Vitamins are essential for your metabolism, energy production and nervous system function. If you suffer from muscle weakness and fatigue, especially during exercise, you may have a deficiency and require a Vitamin B12 supplement to provide your body with what it needs. Remember though, always consult your GP for advice first.
For more information about our B12 Vitamin Supplements, contact us.