Vitamin B12, dubbed the ‘energy vitamin', is important for just about everything your body does. It plays a major role in the production of DNA, keeps your body filled with the red blood cells that carry oxygen to all parts of your body and promotes healthy nerve function.
It goes without saying that maintaining optimal levels of vitamin B12 is key to good overall health, but here's the thing: Because this vitamin is only available in food and supplements, a lot of us are deficient in it (and most of us don't even know it). Here are three signs you may be deficient in vitamin B12.
Three top vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms you should know about
#1: You feel unusually weak and run-down
When your supply of vitamin B12 runs low, you’ll experience weakness and fatigue
as a result of your body not being able to produce the red blood cells needed to deliver oxygen throughout your body. In some cases, this can lead to anaemia. Of course, extreme fatigue
and tiredness is a pretty general symptom, so if this is the only symptom you’re experiencing, it may be due to another health issue, such as high stress
levels or lack of sleep
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#2: You’ve been feeling depressed
If you’ve been feeling really down in the dumps late and there’s no obvious reason why – such as family drama, a bad breakup or fewer daylight hours – low vitamin B12 levels may be to blame. Vitamin B12 plays a vital role in brain function and production of myelin, a fatty white substance that coats the long nerve tract that runs from your brain, along your spinal cord to your hands and feet. In some people, a breakdown in myelin production presents as symptoms of depression
#3: You have tingling sensations in your hands and feet
As we’ve already explained, you need vitamin B12 to produce myelin. So, when your levels of this essential vitamin are low, myelin breaks down and nerve impulses can no longer travel as fast as they should. Plus, it becomes more difficult for your hands and feet to sense touch. As a result, you’ll feel tingling in your hands and feet.
If you spot these vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms, get checked out by your doctor, who will suggest the best way for you to get your levels back on track.
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