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What Food Contains Vitamin B12

What are Vitamins B?  

B Vitamins are macro-nutrients which assist the body to produce protein to build muscle and convert fats and carbohydrates into energy. 

They are a complex group of 5 different vitamin B:

  1. B1 (thiamine) helps in carbohydrate metabolism.
  2. B2 (riboflavin) acts as hydrogen acceptors and is a component of amino acid oxidases. B2 deficiency is one of the most common vitamin deficiencies despite its being widely available in many different foods. Symptoms of B2 deficiency include dermatitis, cracking at the corners of the lips, purple-red and shiny lips and tongue. Deficiencies produce eye problems such as blurred vision and light sensitivity. 
  3. B5 (pantothenic acid) functions as a coenzyme and is involved in the synthesis of steroids and heme of hemoglobin.
  4. B6 (pyridoxine) is involved in amino acid metabolism and various conversion processes. B6 deficiencies cause nervous irritability, convulsions, weakness, anemia, vomiting and abdominal pain in infants. In adults, B6 deficiencies cause seborrhea (over- active sebaceous glands) lesions around the eyes and mouth as well as an increased risk of heart disease. 
  5. B12 (cyanocobalamin) functions as a coenzyme in all cells and is important in the gastrointestinal tract, nervous system, and bone marrow. Deficiencies of B12 can result in pernicious anemia which can lead to permanent neurological damage. Except in the case of vegans, most deficiencies are the result of poor absorption. Breastfed babies of vegans are at high risk of B12 deficiency. 

The main method of getting vitamins into our bodies is by eating food. However, when the vitamins in food are insufficient or unable to be absorbed due to gut issues, taking vitamin B supplement is another way of supplying the body with what it needs to maintain health and function properly. 

Vitamin B is classified as a water-soluble vitamin. This means that in order for the B vitamins to function properly, they must be dissolved in water. When you cook foods in water (i.e: in soups, stews, or boiled chicken etc), make sure to drink the cooking water as it contains vitamin B.

The best sources of vitamin B12 are:

  • Liver
  • Kidney
  • Meats (Beef, lamb, pork, chicken)
  • Milk and yogurt
  • Eggs
  • Seafood
  • Cheese

The bioavailability of vitamin B12 differs depending on the source: fish (42%), lamb (56-89%), chicken (61-66%), eggs (<9%)[1]

 

Do you have vitamin B12 deficiency? 

 

 

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