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Here's what you need to know about vitamin B12 shots

by , 31 August 2016
Here's what you need to know about vitamin B12 shots
Everyone wants more energy. And while you're well aware of the recipe that never fails - stay hydrated, exercise, eat well, get enough sleep, repeat - wouldn't it be way easier to just roll up your sleeve and have a shot of “oomph” injected into your body? Of course it would!

For a large number of South Africans, a vitamin B12 deficiency requires exactly that - monthly injections that boost energy, among other benefits such as boosting your metabolism and keeping nerves and red blood cells healthy. Think you could benefit from one? First read on for all you need to know about vitamin B12 injections.

The claims about vitamin B12 aren’t all true

People have been making major claims about vitamin B12 recently. “Your energy levels will skyrocket with a vitamin B12 shot!” and “The secret to weight loss? A vitamin B12 injection!” are among some of them. But not all of these claims are true. In fact, getting a B12 shot may not be so beneficial for everyone.

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You see, vitamin B12 is water-soluble. So, when you take it in excess, your body naturally eliminates what it doesn’t need. In other words, if you aren’t deficient in the vitamin, you’ll be wasting your money getting a B12 shot. Most accounts from healthy people swearing by this vitamin boils down to a good old placebo effect. Let’s get real – if you’re told something works wonder, you’re likely to feel that it does!
 
So how can you tell if you’re deficient in vitamin B12?
 

Find out if you’re deficient in vitamin B12 before getting a shot

According to data, around 40% of the population is deficient in vitamin B12. This isn’t due to a low intake of vitamin B12 from food, considering B12-rich foods like milk, eggs, poultry, fish and fortified cereals are prominent in our diets. According to research, low levels of vitamin B12 in South Africa are largely due to factors like alcohol abuse, suffering from Crohn’s or celiac disease or following a vegan or vegetarian diet.
 
Common signs and symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency include fatigue, a sore tongue, weakness, tingling or numbness in your fingers and toes, difficulty walking, mood swings and medical conditions. If you’re suffering from one or more of these symptoms, see your doctor as soon as possible. If it turns out that you are deficient, only then should you consider getting a B12 shot. The bottom line? Don’t succumb to a marketed solution off a self-diagnosis!

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