Certain vitamins are essential for your everyday energy, and vitamin B12 is one of those.
Depending on your personal situation, you’re likely to be deficient in this important ‘energy’ vitamin. It’s estimated that nearly 40% of the U.S. population has low or marginal levels, and many may be at risk of a deficiency.
Because doctors rarely test vitamin B12 levels, most people don’t realize they may be deficient. Low levels of vitamin B12 are easily missed because the signs of deficiency can resemble other conditions, or they may be simply ignored because of their gradual onset.
So what signs might suggest you’re low in vitamin B12?
- Mental fogginess, trouble thinking and occasional forgetfulness
- Mood changes and feeling of nervousness
- Loss of appetite
- Difficulty relaxing and experiencing poor sleep quality
- Occasional headaches
- Tingling in your hands, legs or feet
- Joint discomfort
- Muscle weakness, dizziness or balance issues
- Eye twitching or eyelid spasms
- Occasional digestive and elimination issues
How Low Levels of Vitamin B12 Can Put You at Risk
Here’s the thing about vitamin B12…The onset of symptoms can occur early on, even before you’ve reached deficient levels. Research suggests that’s especially true for older individuals.
A study involving more than 100 volunteers, aged 61 to 87, showed how just having B12 levels in the low range of normal can put you at higher risk for issues. For example, those with the lowest B12 levels had a six-fold greater rate of brain volume loss compared to those with the highest levels.
None of these volunteers were actually deficient, according to normal lab ranges. They simply had levels in the low range of normal.
This finding led the study’s lead researcher to recommend maintaining vitamin B12 levels above the “normal” range – no matter your age.
As you age, you have a couple of factors working against you that can place you at greater risk for low levels of vitamin B12. For one, you may not be getting enough in your diet.
But even if you do consume good sources of vitamin B12, like meat, seafood and fish, brewer’s yeast, eggs and dairy products, you can still have low levels of B12.
Why is that?
The lining of your stomach gradually loses its ability to produce a protein called intrinsic factor. Intrinsic factor binds to vitamin B12 from your food so your body can absorb it in the end part of your small intestine.
Vitamin B12 Deficiency – Even If You’re Young and Eat Meat?
Vitamin B12 deficiency was once thought to be found mostly among two groups: older individuals and vegetarians, because meat and dairy are primary sources of B12.
However, the ongoing Framingham Offspring Study shows how that thinking has changed.
The researchers found that those aged 26 to 49 had about the same B12 status as individuals aged 65 and up. Even more alarming was their discovery that plasma levels of B12 weren’t related to meat or fish intake.
Experts have been telling us for years that eating meat, fish and dairy pretty much ensures healthy vitamin B12 levels, as long as you don’t have a gastrointestinal issue.
However, now, they realize that because the vitamin is tightly bound to the proteins in animal foods and requires high-gastric acidity to release it, low vitamin B12 levels can also be the result of an absorption issue and not just eating too little meat.
Researchers believe three factors are involved in today’s widespread B12 deficiency:
- Many people don’t have enough stomach acidity to separate the vitamin B12 from dietary proteins.
- Factory-farmed meat and poultry (the most common types consumed today) contain lower levels of vitamin B12.
- Insufficient production of intrinsic factor that is required for B12 to be absorbed in your small intestine. This can be a result of aging or an autoimmune disease.
Concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO) animals don’t produce as much vitamin B12 because the vitamin is made by bacteria that live in both soil and the guts of animals.
Cows and chickens raised on pasture obtain the vitamin from the dirt on their food. However, CAFO animals are fed mostly genetically engineered, pesticide-laden corn and grains, which aren’t good sources of vitamin B12.
The pesticides in the feed kill off soil bacteria and the antibiotics routinely given to CAFO animals kill off the beneficial microbes in their guts that produce B12.
Why Most People End Up With Too Little Vitamin B12
While vitamin B12 is found almost exclusively in animal tissues, including meat, fish, poultry, eggs and seafood, there are a few plant sources.
However, plant foods like seaweed, algae and mushrooms aren’t reliable sources. Some actually act as vitamin B12 analogs that, instead of helping, block the uptake of vitamin B12 and increase your body’s requirements.
Surprisingly, there’s a long list of individuals, in addition to vegetarians and vegans, that may be at an increased risk of developing a vitamin B12 deficiency:
- Anyone over age 50 will likely have a limited ability to absorb B12 due to decreased intrinsic factor.
- Those with gastrointestinal issues that may affect absorption of B12
- People who regularly drink alcohol, as B12 is stored in your liver
- Pregnant women
- Those who drink more than four cups of coffee daily
- Women taking birth control pills for extended periods as estrogen impairs absorption
So now that you know who may be at greater risk for low levels of vitamin B12, why does it matter?
12 Ways Vitamin B12 Supports Your Well-Being
Your body requires adequate levels of vitamin B12 for at least a dozen different functions, including helping to:
- Maintain normal energy levels by converting carbohydrates to glucose and fatty acids into energy – two major sources of fuel for your body.*
- Support healthy cognitive function, mental clarity, alertness and concentration.*
- Ease stress and promote a positive mood and feelings of well-being.*
- Promote healthy neurological activity, including maintaining healthy nerve endings to support normal nerve growth and development.*
- Break down homocysteine in your blood for healthy heart and brain function.*
- Maintain healthy circulation by helping to regulate the formation of red blood cells and the proper use of iron.*
- Promote optimal adrenal health and hormone production.*
- Ease occasional sleeplessness by supporting normal melatonin production.*
- Support female reproductive cell health.*
- Maintain healthy cell growth and repair, and promote healthy cellular aging.*
- Promote healthy immune function.*
- Support normal carbohydrate and fat metabolism.*
As you age, it can become more challenging to get a good night’s sleep, partly because your body becomes less efficient at making melatonin, your “sleep hormone”. Taking vitamin B12 early in the day may help you sleep better at night.*
Are You Getting Enough of the Right Kind of Vitamin B12?
It’s important to know that not all forms of vitamin B12 are the same. Vitamin B12 contains the mineral cobalt, so any compound with vitamin B12 activity is called a “cobalamin”.
The most common form of vitamin B12 in dietary supplements is cyanocobalamin. This form only becomes biologically active after your body converts it to methylcobalamin. Being more biologically active, methylcobalamin, or “methyl B12”, is the most bioavailable and most absorbable form of vitamin B12.
Studies suggest that methyl B12 is better utilized and retained in your body because it’s already in the active coenzyme form naturally found in your body.
The next question to ask yourself is… Are you getting enough?
Most supplements contain 100-200 micrograms (mcg) of B12, but even if the dose was as high as 500 mcg, with an absorption rate of one-third of 1%, you would only actually get about 1.8 mcg total.
And then, there’s the issue of analogs…
Many multivitamin products on the market today contain potentially hazardous B12 analogues. Analogues are created when crystalline B12 interacts with other nutrients in multivitamin products, such as vitamin C, iron and copper.
Vitamin B12 analogues resemble the real vitamin, but they aren’t, and they compete with the real B12 molecules by binding to intrinsic factor. This makes it more difficult for your body to absorb the real vitamin B12 and raises your risk for deficiency.
To help optimize your levels of vitamin B12, I recommend taking it without other unrelated nutrients, like iron, copper and vitamin C.
Introducing Organic Chewable Vitamin B12 Methylcobalamin
I personally use our B12 spray but for those that want an alternative we developed a simple way for you to get the vitamin B12 you need – in a tasty, natural cherry-flavored chewable tablet.
Each tablet of Organic Chewable Vitamin B12 Methylcobalamin provides 1,000 mcg of Vitamin B12 in the preferred active form, Methylcobalamin – and without any questionable analogs.
Unlike some other chewable supplements, our delicious Chewable Vitamin B12 contains zero grams of total sugars and no artificial sweeteners.
With a chewable tablet, you receive methylcobalamin in a rapidly absorbed form that deposits directly into your circulatory system and then in your tissues and cells, unlike pills and capsules that must be absorbed through your gut.*
In addition to the benefit of rapid absorption, there’s something else that allows Chewable Vitamin B12 to deliver more benefits.
In fact, I promise you this formula is unlike any other vitamin B12 supplement you’ve seen. That’s because we’ve taken vitamin B12 supplementation to a whole new level…
Revolutionary Chewable Vitamin B12 Helps Your Body Make Its Own B12
In addition to providing you with a substantial dose of the preferred active form of vitamin B12 – Methylcobalamin – Chewable Vitamin B12 contains a special prebiotic that actually helps your body make its own supply.
As you know, your body can’t normally make vitamin B12 on its own and instead relies on animal dietary sources – specifically animals that host certain microbes that produce vitamin B12.
Specific bacteria strains can produce their own vitamin B12 in your gut. This includes the strain L reuteri, one of the few strains common in the human gut that has been shown to help produce vitamin B12.
Each tablet of Chewable Vitamin B12 Methylcobalamin provides a total of 1 gram of an organic prebiotic called Xylooligosaccharides, or XOS, that supports the growth of L reuteri. This matches the dosage level used in studies (1.4 grams of compound to yield 1 gram of XOS per serving).
Beyond its usefulness for the production of vitamin B12 in your gut, the XOS in Chewable Vitamin B12 boosts levels of beneficial bacteria that promote healthy microbiota.*
Studies show this supports healthy lipid levels as well as digestive function, healthy blood sugar levels already in the normal range, and metabolic, and immune health.* So what exactly are prebiotics – and how does the unique strain in Chewable Vitamin B12 work?
Prebiotics vs. Probiotics – What’s the Difference?
Probiotics are live organisms that live in your digestive tract and help keep it balanced and healthy. You add these “beneficial” bacteria to your intestinal tract through eating fermented foods or by taking a probiotic supplement.
Two of the most common probiotics are Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus.
However, probiotics aren’t the only way you can influence the beneficial bacteria in your gut. Instead, you can provide your microbiome with the nutrients, or food, that the ‘good’ guys need to thrive and multiply. These nutrients are known as prebiotics.
Prebiotics support and act as “fertilizer” to stimulate the growth and activity of the beneficial bacteria already present in your gut. One of the key roles prebiotics play in your well-being is to promote the growth of Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus bacteria.*
Mostly found in foods containing fiber, prebiotics are non-digestible and remain in your gut to feed your beneficial bacteria. In that role, they can have profound effects on your bowel flora.*
Prebiotics are just as beneficial for your gut health as probiotics.*
Here are some of the most common types of prebiotic compounds:
- Inulin – A type of water-soluble, non-digestible polysaccharide that supports digestion and regularity, and helps nourish the beneficial bacteria in your gut.
- Fructooligosaccharides (FOS) – A type of carbohydrate made up of short chains of fructose, or sugar, molecules. Produced by enzymes, FOS supports regularity.
- Xylooligosaccharides (XOS) – A natural prebiotic extracted from plant fiber, it selectively feeds the beneficial bacteria and supports digestive health.*
- Galactooligosaccharides (GOS) – Produced by an enzymatic reaction using lactose or from plant fibers, this prebiotic helps promote the growth of specific beneficial bacteria.
- Resistant Starch (RS) – Unlike other dietary starches that are broken down and digested, RS is a type of starch that is unaffected by digestive enzymes and passes through your digestive tract intact, feeding beneficial bacteria in your colon.
Most of the prebiotic products on the market are FOS- and GOS-based ingredients. However, “newcomers” Xylooligosaccharides, or XOS, are gaining recognition for their unique qualities and benefits.
Xylooligosaccharides Unlock the Growth Potential of Beneficial Gut Bacteria*
Your gut microbiome is your unique combination of bacterial species. The diversity of your gut microbiome is established in your infancy and is affected by genetics. As you grow older, your diet increasingly affects your microbiome.
Processed foods and excess sugar have a negative effect on your microbiome and your overall health, as they can reduce gut diversity. Fiber has the opposite effect.
When you are young, your body produces an abundant supply of bifidobacteria, one of the most important naturally-occurring beneficial bacteria in your gastrointestinal (GI) tract. This strain is especially plentiful in healthy, breast-fed infants.
As you age, levels of bifidobacteria decline. Your diet, lifestyle factors and medications can affect the survival of beneficial gut bacteria. Xylooligosaccharides, or XOS, has been shown in studies to stimulate growth of beneficial bacteria… and only beneficial bacteria.
Specifically, XOS promotes the growth of healthy Bifidobacteria in your colon.*
In one study, plates prepared with XOS were inoculated with various strains of Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus. XOS was found to stimulate all 35 strains of Bifidobacterium and 62% of the Lactobacillus strains.*
When different types of prebiotics were compared, Bifidobacterium favored XOS.
Plus, XOS was able to effectively support healthy microbiota levels – with fewer intestinal side effects – using a lower dose than the much higher daily doses required with the use of FOS and GOS.
Because of its smaller required dose, XOS doesn’t commonly create gas with accompanying discomfort and cramping like other prebiotics.
How XOS Can Benefit Your GI, Heart and Brain Health*
It’s been estimated that as many as 70 million people are impacted by digestive issues, including food intolerances, bloating and gas, irregularity and other gastrointestinal complaints.
All those issues can negatively impact your immune health, as about 70% of your immune system lies in your gut – specifically the gut associated lymphatic tissues (GALT). Your GALT is your body’s front line of defense to help you stay healthy.
The fact that both digestive and immune functions are known to decline with age makes supporting your digestive function and GI health vitally important to do – at any age. Prebiotics are emerging as one of the most promising tools for supporting not only digestive and gut health, but also immune and cardiovascular health.*
XOS has been shown in studies to help:
- Optimize gut health by promoting growth of beneficial bacteria.*
- Promote healthy stool consistency and regularity through XOS’s dietary fiber.*
- Replenish age-related gut bacteria loss.*
- Work together with probiotics to support a healthy microbiome.*
- Increase levels of beneficial short chain fatty acids (SCFAs), including butyrate, important for health. *
- Promote a healthy pH in your colon for optimal absorption of calcium and magnesium*
- Support healthy immune function*
- Promote cardiovascular health*
- Support normal, healthy brain function*
Your healthy gut bacteria help break down the foods you eat and ferment fiber, such as XOS, turning them into beneficial SCFAs, which promote a healthy immune response and an already normal inflammatory response.*
Make Chewable Vitamin B12 With XOS Your Metabolic Health Partner
Your microbiome is involved in multiple aspects of metabolic health, including healthy weight management. Through signals it sends via your hormones and nervous system, your microbiome controls energy balance, food intake and satiety – or that feeling of fullness after a meal.
Any disruption or changes in the composition of your microbiome can affect the healthy signaling of these important functions.
Three different groups of microbes make up your microbiome: Bacteroidetes, Firmicutes and actinobacteria. Your gut is populated by more than 1,000 species – 90% of which are Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes.
People with metabolic issues, especially those who tend to pile on extra pounds, can have as much as a 40% decrease in diversity, including an increased Firmicutes-to-Bacteroidetes ratio.
Those with weight and metabolic issues often have higher proportions of Firmicutes and Lactobacillus, and lower proportion of Bacteroidetes and Bifidobacterium, compared to normal weight individuals. An increased Firmicutes-to-Bacteroidetes ratio is associated with an increased capacity of harvesting energy from food.
Especially for those with metabolic issues, the xylooligosaccharides, or XOS, in Chewable Vitamin B12 Methylcobalamin can help promote growth of Bifidobacterium and optimize your firmicutes-to-bacteroidetes ratio.*
Help Maintain Optimal Vitamin B12 Levels and Your Digestive and Metabolic Health With Organic Chewable Vitamin B12*
Why take just a vitamin B12 supplement when you can provide your body with the tools to help make its own supply of B12? And this isn’t just any ordinary tool… the revolutionary prebiotic XOS in our Chewable Vitamin B12 supports your gut, digestive and metabolic health, too.*
Let’s face it… Most people today need extra vitamin B12 for so many things – energy, cell health, immune function, feelings of well-being, circulation, a healthy brain and nerves… and even sleep.
So why not combine it with the prebiotic that’s clinically shown to support your digestion and healthy, normal metabolism? Order Organic Chewable Vitamin B12 Methylcobalamin today, and experience what you’ve been missing.