Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin, is a water-soluble B vitamin. Good food sources of vitamin B12 are: beef, chicken, clams, mussels, milk, eggs, Brie cheese, fermented beans and vegetables.1 The 100% Daily Value of vitamin B12 (based on a 2,000 kcal diet) is 6 µg,but it has been revised to 2.4 μg as of May 27, 2016.The 100% Daily Value for pregnant or lactating women is 2.8 μg, effective as of July 26, 2018.6

Form

  • Cyanocobalamin: Cyanocobalamin is produced naturally by yeast fermentation.

Major Health Benefits

Vitamin B12 functions in the metabolism of carbohydrate, protein, fat, and folate. It is also involved in the synthesis of genetic material within cells, and the maintenance of the protective sheath around nerve fibers. Vitamin B12 is essential for normal psychological function, homocysteine metabolism, red blood cell formation, as well as normal immune system.3,4

Adequate intake of Vitamin B12 can help prevent deficiency symptoms such as chronic stomach inflammation, tongue soreness, appetite loss, pernicious/megaloblastic anemia, and neurological disorders (e.g., numbness and tingling of the hands and feet, memory loss, or disorientation).5

References

  1. Higdon, J. Vitamin B12. Linus Pauling Institute, Oregon State University. 2000. (Reviewed by Miller, JW in 2014) (Food Sources) http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/vitamins/vitamin-B12 Accessed 7/2015.
  2. US Food and Drug Administration. Guidance for Industry: A Food Labeling Guide (14. Appendix F: Calculate the Percent Daily Value for the Appropriate Nutrients). US Department of Health and Human Services. 2013 January.
  3. European Food Safety Authority. Scientific Opinion on the substantiation of health claims related to vitamin B12 and contribution to normal neurological and psychological functions, contribution to normal homocysteine metabolism, maintenance of normal bone, maintenance of normal teeth, maintenance of normal hair, maintenance of normal skin, maintenance of normal nails, reduction of tiredness and fatigue, and cell division. EFSA Journal 2010;8(10): 4114.
  4. European Food Safety Authority. Scientific Opinion on the substantiation of health claims related to vitamin B12 and red blood cell formation, cell division, energy-yielding metabolism and function of the immune system. EFSA Journal 2009;7(9): 1223.
  5. Higdon, J. Vitamin B12. Linus Pauling Institute, Oregon State University. 2000. (Reviewed by Miller, JW in 2014) (Symptoms of Vitamin B12 Deficiency)
  6. US Food and Drug Administration. Food Labeling: Revision of the Nutrition and Supplement Facts Labels. US Department of Health and Human Services. Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 103, p. 33982 / May 27, 2016. https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2016-05-27/pdf/2016-11867.pdf