Vitamins are essential nutrients required for the proper functioning of our body. They are divided into the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K, and the water-soluble vitamin C and all the B vitamins.
Vitamin B12 is exceptional in this list because, like the other B vitamins are water soluble, but like the fat-soluble vitamins has a stock in the body. That stock is sufficient for at least 3 years, sometimes up to 10 years. If that stock runs out, the blood level is going to drop and create the deficit. A vitamin B12 deficiency arises not from one day to another, and is not solved even in a short time.
Vitamin B12 is also known as cobalamin. In the center of vitamin B12 is a metal: cobalt, hence the name cobalamin. The natural form of vitamin B12 found in our diet are: methyl, hydroxy and adenosylcobalamin.
Vitamin B12 is produced by micro-organisms. The human being may create vitamin B12 by the micro-organisms in the intestine, but this occurs in a part of the intestine where it can no longer be recorded. We are so dependent on vitamin B12 in our diets. Vitamin B12 is only in meat, fish, eggs and dairy. So people who eat no animal products at risk of a vitamin B12 deficiency.
Vitamin B12 is essential for all kinds of systems in the body, inter alia, for the health of the nervous system, the immune system, the cardiovascular system and the gastrointestinal tract. There is not enough vitamin B12 in the body, because it is not absorbed well or because too few enter, these systems work less well, with all sorts of problems and complaints.
Systems that are affected by a B12 deficiency:
- Nervous system
- Haematologic system, blood, bone marrow and blood clotting
- Immune System
- Movement system: muscles, tendons and bones
- Genitourinary system: urinary and genital organs
There are many causes of vitamin B12 deficiency. These can be divided into four categories: reduced intake (no / little animal products in the diet), impaired absorption, congenital metabolic disorders, and other causes. It is also possible that, for one person multiple causes are present next to each other. Some causes are fairly simple to figure out, in other cases it can be very difficult. Some causes can be removed, allowing the absorption of vitamin B12 can recover. Most causes, however, are not to be taken away, leaving residual treatment is necessary.
Biocoherence Netherlands offers consumers an effective questionnaire to determine if there is Vitamin B12 deficiency. The results can be used to determine to perform a Vitamin B12 determination in the blood.