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What Does Vitamin B Do For Your Body

When Do You Need B12 Shots

Vitamins & Diets : What Do B12 Vitamins Do for Your Body?

Vitamin B12 shots are usually given for a severe B12 deficiency. For mild to moderate cases of deficiency, oral supplementation may work to bring levels back to normal. There are some health circumstances where B12 shots may be needed. These are:

Symptoms of Vitamin B12 Deficiency

  • Fatigue
  • Tingling and numbness in hands and feet
  • Trouble walking
  • Trouble thinking clearly
  • Swollen tongue

If you have the above symptoms, see your doctor as soon as possible. They will take a health and medication history to see what may be causing the symptoms. Vitamin B12 deficiencies are most accurately diagnosed with a blood test for B12 levels. If you have a severe deficiency, early treatment is important to prevent nervous system complications.

Should You Take Vitamin B12 Supplements

Vitamin B12 supplements are recommended for people who are at risk of vitamin B12 deficiency.

Those include older adults, pregnant or breastfeeding women, vegetarians and vegans, individuals with intestinal problems, and those who have had stomach surgery.

As with the vitamin B12 in fortified sources, the vitamin B12 in supplements is synthetically made, so its vegan-friendly .

Vitamin B12 supplements can be found in many forms. You can swallow, chew, or drink them, or place them under your tongue. Your healthcare provider can also inject you with vitamin B12.

Research has shown that vitamin B12 taken by mouth and muscular injection are equally effective at restoring vitamin B12 levels in people who are deficient in the vitamin .

In fact, a study found that people with low levels of vitamin B12 replenished their stores after 90 days of either supplements or injections of vitamin B12 .

However, not all vitamin B12 deficiency is caused by inadequate dietary intake. Its sometimes caused by lack of intrinsic factor, a protein that is necessary for the efficient absorption of vitamin B12.

Lack of intrinsic factor is most common in older people and usually associated with an autoimmune disease known as pernicious anemia.

The most common treatment for pernicious anemia is lifelong vitamin B12 injections, but small amounts of vitamin B12 are absorbed without intrinsic factor. One review concluded that taking 1,000 mcg daily is an effective alternative to injections .

Do B12 Shots Help With Weight Loss

Vitamin B12 shots may not directly help you lose weight, but may have an indirect effect on your metabolism. Vitamin B12 is often used as a supplement during a weight loss program. They may help you feel more energy for exercise, speed up your metabolism to burn fat, and this helps weight loss. It really only helps those who are deficient in B12 when starting a weight loss program.

If you are taking the drug, Metformin for Type 2 Diabetes you may have B12 deficiency due to the medication. This can hamper weight loss efforts to help control blood sugars. Some doctors use B12 injections along with this medication to increase the body’s ability to burn fat and carbohydrates.

Vitamin B12 injections are never an easy way to lose weight. Be careful of weight loss programs that state all you need is B12 injections for weight loss. Weight loss requires an entire regimen of healthy diet, exercise, and healthy supplements to support your body.

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What Happens If You Get Too Much Vitamin B Complex

Youre unlikely to get too much vitamin B complex from your diet. Thats because B complex vitamins are water soluble. That means they arent stored in your body but are excreted in your urine daily.

Youre also unlikely to get too much vitamin B if youre taking any supplementation as directed.

That said, overdose is possible especially if youre taking a supplement without receiving a deficiency diagnosis from your doctor.

Symptoms of a vitamin B complex overdose include:

  • excessive thirst

Folate And Folic Acid

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Folate is a B vitamin found in many foods. The manmade form of folate is called folic acid.

Folate is also known as folacin and vitamin B9.

Folate helps:

  • the body form healthy red blood cells
  • reduce the risk of birth defects called neural tube defects, such as spina bifida, in unborn babies

A lack of folate could lead to folate deficiency anaemia.

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How Much Vitamin B Should You Take

Each of the eight B vitamins has its own recommended daily dosage, which differs depending on factors such as:

  • your gender
  • your dieti.e. if youre vegan or vegetarian
  • whether youre pregnant

Recommended daily dosages

The recommended daily dosages, as set by Public Health England, are as follows:


0.5 mg

0.8 mg

*Pantothenic acid and biotin are found in many foods, so as long as you eat a varied and balanced diet you should get all you need.

Supplementsmaximum recommended dosages

If you take vitamin B oral supplements , its important to know the maximum recommended dosage, as some supplements provide more than your full recommended daily allowance .

In most cases, taking more than the maximum dosage might be harmful to your health, although there isnt a great deal of evidence to say exactly how.

The table below shows the maximum recommended dosages for each of the B vitamins.

B vitamin

2 mg

Other Signs And Symptoms Of B12 Deficiency

In addition to the symptoms above, B12 deficiency may lead to the following:

  • Muscle cramps and muscle weakness. B12 deficiency negatively impacts motor and sensory nerve function, which can cause muscle cramps and weakness (


If your healthcare professional thinks you may be low in B12, theyll order appropriate blood tests to assess your B12 levels. Treatment of B12 deficiency typically includes oral supplements or injections.

Also Check: What Foods Have Vitamin B In Them

What Is Vitamin B Complex

A nutritional supplement that contains all eight of the essential water-soluble vitamins, with the exception of vitamin C, is known as vitamin B complex. The B vitamins share some chemical characteristics and often coexist in some foods, but each works independently and has a different role in contributing to your health. The vitamins in B-complex include:

  • thiamine essential for DNA and creation ofenergy and closely linked to the activity of other B vitamins
  • riboflavin helps cleanse your blood and acts as an antioxidant
  • niacin needed for communication between cells and vital for energy production
  • pantothenic acid helps your liver cope with toxins and helps generate energy
  • pyridoxine for your immune system, contributesto oxygen circulation
  • biotin for healthy cells, regulates inflammation and protects the development of babies
  • folic acid essential for your brain, lowersrisk of heart disease and cancer, prevents birth defects
  • cobalamins for the health of your blood cells,nervous system and DNA structure

Read More: Foods High in B Vitamins

What Is The Main Cause Of Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Signs That Your Body Needs B-12

Pernicious anaemia is the most common cause of vitamin B12 deficiency in the UK. Pernicious anaemia is an autoimmune condition that affects your stomach. An autoimmune condition means your immune system, the body’s natural defence system that protects against illness and infection, attacks your body’s healthy cells.

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Is Vitamin B6 Deficiency Common

True vitamin B6 deficiency is fortunately rare. It mainly occurs in the setting of serious medical conditions. Symptoms of vitamin B6 deficiency include seizures, anemia, and seborrheic dermatitis.

However, low or suboptimal levels of vitamin B6 are more common and can leave us more vulnerable to the harmful effects of stress. There are certain groups of people who are especially at risk for suboptimal levels, including:

People in these groups and those with other medical conditions listed below may benefit from higher levels of vitamin B6.

B6 For Hormonal Balance

You may have heard me talk about how important it is to support your liver in clearing estrogen from the body. Well, B6 plays a starring role in this process. Its one of the reasons why so many women are able to help their estrogen dominance with a high-quality B-vitamin supplement.

Another reason B-vitamin supplementation helps estrogen dominance symptoms is because B6 can help increase progesterone and decrease estrogen which for many women, is the sweet spot for hormonal balance. Its why I included its most bioavailable form in my Balance formulation.

B6 is also important in the function of the adrenal glands. It helps in the production of adrenal hormones. Many women who are struggling with HPA Axis Dysfunction find that focusing on getting enough B-vitamins helps to get their adrenals back up to proper functioning.

I created my Optimal Adrenal Kit with these women mind it contains the levels of B6 necessary to support the adrenals and make them happy again.

> > Suspecting your hormones and/or adrenals are not quite where they should be?

I encourage you to pick up a copy of the best-selling Beyond the Pill so I can walk you through exactly what steps to take to figure out your particular imbalance and the labs and testing I can help you use to get more details.

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What Are The Benefits Of Taking Magnesium And B Vitamins At The Same Time

Its much simpler! Many people have busy lifestyles with lots of distractions and dont always have the time to keep close tabs on their vitamin and mineral intake. Taking magnesium and B vitamins at the same time, as part of a regular and straightforward daily routine, means theres less chance of developing a deficiency later.

May Promote Eye Health And Prevent Eye Diseases

Vitamin B12 deficiency: The three signs to spot on your face

Vitamin B6 may play a role in preventing eye diseases, especially a type of vision loss that affects older adults called age-related macular degeneration .

Studies have linked high blood levels of circulating homocysteine with an increased risk of AMD .

Since vitamin B6 helps reduce elevated blood levels of homocysteine, getting enough B6 may lower your risk of this disease .

A seven-year study in over 5,400 female health professionals found that taking a daily supplement of vitamin B6, B12 and folic acid significantly reduced AMD risk by 3540%, compared to a placebo .

While these results suggest that B6 may play a role in preventing AMD, its difficult to tell if B6 alone would offer the same benefits.

Research has also linked low blood levels of vitamin B6 to eye conditions that block veins that connect to the retina. A controlled study in over 500 people found that the lowest blood levels of B6 were significantly associated with retinal disorders .

Summary Vitamin B6 supplements may reduce your risk of age-related macular degeneration . Additionally, adequate blood levels of B6 may prevent issues that affect the retina. However, more research is needed.

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How Does Vitamin B1 Promote Good Health

Boosts energy production. When sugar mixes with vitamin B1, it becomes energy for your body to use. B1 helps make this process faster while supporting the other enzymes.

Reduces the effects of sepsis. Sepsis, a severe response to an infection, can become fatal if your vitamin B1 levels are low. Alon with vitamin C, thiamine can reduce the effects of sepsis. It can also lower the risk of kidney failure that often results from the infection.

Helps fight depression. Taking vitamin B1 supplements along with an antidepressant is good for depression. Vitamin B1 helps ease symptoms faster while stabilizing your mood. Lack of vitamin B1 has also been linked to low moods.

Good for diabetes. If you have diabetes, think about getting more thiamine. Studies show that high blood sugar and insulin levels improve after taking vitamin B1 for 6 weeks. B1 also helps reduce high blood pressure and heart complications in people with diabetes.

Prevents kidney and circulation problems. A dose of vitamins B1 and B12 can help improve nerve pain in people with diabetes and may reduce the need for painkillers.

Minimizes the risk of heart disease. Thiamine is key to the production of acetylcholine. This is the element that helps your body pass messages between its nerves and muscles. Without this communication, your heart wouldnât work the way it should. Lack of vitamin B1 is one reason for uneven cardiac function.â

Protection From Air Pollution

A study published in 2017 indicated that vitamin B6 may help to protect people against the harmful effects of air pollution by reducing the impact of pollution on the epigenome .

The researchers hope their findings may lead to new measures to prevent epigenetic changes that can result from exposure to air pollution.

of people in the United States take vitamin supplements containing vitamin B6. Supplements are available in capsule or tablet form.

Most people of all ages in the U.S. consume sufficient B6 and do not require supplements.

Those who are more likely to have low levels of B6 include:

  • people who drink excess alcohol
  • people with obesity
  • people who are pregnant or breastfeeding

There is no evidence of any adverse effect from consuming too much vitamin B6 in food.

However, evidence has shown that taking between of oral pyridoxine a day for 12 to 40 months may be linked with severe, progressive sensory neuropathy and a loss of control of body movement.

The 2015 to 2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans

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How Does Vitamin B Complex Help Your Body

B vitamins are vital for cell metabolism and every physiological function in your body, but since they’re water-soluble, your body is unable to store them. This means that, if you can’t get all the essential B vitamins from your diet, or if you have certain medical conditions, taking a B complex supplement is a wise choice, ensuring your body gets the nutrients it needs.

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Each of the unique vitamins in B complex has a defined role in the overall health of your bodily functions. Vitamin B complex has an impact on your energy levels, cell metabolism, brain function and immune system.

Dietary Sources Of B Vitamins

B Vitamin Deficiency’s Sizable Increase to Heart Attack Risk

B vitamins are found primarily in animal food sources and fortified cereals. But many vegetables, fruits, nuts, and legumes contain some amount of B vitamins as well. Here’s a look at the common food sources. You’ll note that many of the foods overlap with other B vitamins.

  • B1 : Fortified breakfast cereal, enriched and whole-grain products , wheat germ, pork, trout, black beans, mussels, and tuna
  • B2 : Milk and dairy products, fortified breakfast cereals, beef liver, clams, portobello mushrooms, almonds, and chicken
  • B3 : Eggs, fish, fortified bread and cereal, rice, nuts, milk and dairy, chicken, beef, turkey, lamb, organ meats, peanuts
  • B5 :Meat, avocado, broccoli, kale, eggs, milk, mushrooms, fortified cereals, organ meats, poultry, potatoes, and legumes
  • B6 :Chickpeas, beef liver, tuna, salmon, chicken breast, fortified breakfast cereal, potatoes, turkey, fruits , and beef
  • B7 :Beef liver, egg yolk, wheat germ, pork, beef, sunflower seeds, sweet potato, almonds, whole-grain foods, sardines, spinach, and broccoli
  • B9 :Spinach, beef liver, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, beans and legumes, asparagus, orange juice, peanuts, avocado, dark leafy greens, fortified cereals, and salmon
  • B12 :Beef liver , clams and other shellfish, beef, chicken, fish, eggs, milk and other dairy products, and some fortified cereals

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May Help Treat Nausea During Pregnancy

Vitamin B6 has been used for decades to treat nausea and vomiting during pregnancy.

In fact, its an ingredient in Diclegis, a medication commonly used to treat morning sickness .

Researchers are not entirely sure why vitamin B6 helps with morning sickness, but it may be because adequate B6 plays several vital roles in ensuring a healthy pregnancy .

A study in 342 women in their first 17 weeks of pregnancy found that a daily supplement of 30 mg of vitamin B6 significantly reduced feelings of nausea after five days of treatment, compared to a placebo .

Another study compared the impact of ginger and vitamin B6 on reducing episodes of nausea and vomiting in 126 pregnant women. The results showed that taking 75 mg of B6 each day decreased nausea and vomiting symptoms by 31% after four days .

These studies suggest that vitamin B6 is effective in treating morning sickness even in durations of less than one week.

If youre interested in taking B6 for morning sickness, speak with your doctor before starting any supplements.

Summary Vitamin B6 supplements in doses of 3075 mg a day have been used as an effective treatment for nausea and vomiting during pregnancy.

What Is Vitamin B6 Or Pyridoxine

Vitamin B6, also known as pyridoxine, is involved in several cellular reactions throughout the body and is instrumental in keeping various bodily functions operating normally. Vitamin B6 is needed to metabolize amino acids and glycogen , and is also necessary for normal nervous system function and red blood cell formation.

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May Improve Mood And Reduce Symptoms Of Depression

Vitamin B6 plays an important role in mood regulation.

This is partly because this vitamin is necessary for creating neurotransmitters that regulate emotions, including serotonin, dopamine and gamma-aminobutyric acid .

Vitamin B6 may also play a role in decreasing high blood levels of the amino acid homocysteine, which have been linked to depression and other psychiatric issues .

Several studies have shown that depressive symptoms are associated with low blood levels and intakes of vitamin B6, especially in older adults who are at high risk for B vitamin deficiency .

One study in 250 older adults found that deficient blood levels of vitamin B6 doubled the likelihood of depression (

12 ).

A controlled two-year study in approximately 300 older men who did not have depression at the start found that those taking a supplement with B6, folate and B12 were not less likely to have depressive symptoms compared to the placebo group .

Summary Low levels of vitamin B6 in older adults have been linked to depression, but research has not shown that B6 is an effective treatment for mood disorders.


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