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Signs of Vitamin B12 Deficiencies: Food and Nutrition Series

61 pages52 minutes


Signs of Vitamin B12 Deficiencies

Who’s at Risk – Why – What Can Be Done

-- Strict Vegans
-- Newborns of Strict Vegans
-- The Elderly
-- Dialysis Patients
-- Pregnant Women

Are you or any of your loved ones among the above groups? If so, then you/they are in danger of suffering the effects of a serious vitamin B12 deficiency. These “effects” can take various forms such as anemia where you feel tired all the time and that your strength has absolutely vanished to real neurological damage as in newborn babies of strict vegan mothers to mental disorders in the elderly mimicking Alzheimer’s disease. Without proper testing, even doctors can be fooled into providing inaccurate diagnoses.

Signs of Vitamin B12 Deficiencies is written in straight-forward, easy-to-understand language so anyone with an interest in the subject matter can quickly grasp the concepts. However, self-diagnosis and treatment is highly discouraged.

To peek inside the book and read the first few pages, scroll up the page and click on the book’s cover (different excerpt below). You’ll get a sense of the writing style and be able to decide if it’s for you. To purchase, click the purchase button on the upper right.

Excerpt from Signs of Vitamin B12 Deficiencies:
. . . Vitamin B12 Deficiency: Neurological Symptoms

One of the most important functions of vitamin B12 in the body is helping to form the protective coating, called the myelin sheath (i.e. Schwann cells), around the nerves. They make the nerve fiber in the peripheral nervous system (PNS) look like a string of pearls.

Schwann cells are one of two supporting cells in the PNS. The other is called a satellite cell and surrounds cell bodies within the ganglia (cell bodies that lie along the nerves in the PNS). It is believed that both types of supporting cells provide insulation for the electrical current that flows through the nerves, but their function is still largely unknown.

When vitamin B12 is deficient, this protective covering does not develop properly. One of the conditions caused by B12 deficiency is neuropathy in the feet and lower limbs. The definition of neuropathy is: Any disease of nervous tissue, but particularly a degenerative disease of nerves. Accompanying symptoms include:
-- tingling
-- numbness
-- loss of sensation (heat/cold)
-- and sometimes a burning sensation

Since vitamin B12 can be stored in the liver for between 3 – 5 years to provide tiny amounts for the body’s use, the symptoms of deficiency can take a long time before becoming noticeable. Also, the pernicious anemia that also accompanies B12 deficiency can be hidden by the ingestion of folic acid. If the anemia is hidden and the deficiency symptoms are not treated, permanent neurological damage occurs.

It is always important to consult a doctor in any instance where anemia is suspected. The doctor should be able to tell if the anemia is caused by a B12 deficiency or some other cause. Never try to treat anemia without consulting professional medical advice. Never give a child iron supplements without professional advice.

B12 deficiency is usually the result of an inability of the stomach to produce intrinsic factor which is necessary in the body’s ability to absorb B12. However, sometimes a person may become deficient in this vitamin because they don’t eat animal products such as meat, fish, or dairy. If this vegan is a female who is pregnant or breast feeding an infant, the fetus or infant is in much greater risk of developing neurological damage because their liver has not stored any B12 because it has not received any.

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