Vitamin B12 Shots

What is B12?

B12 is a group of cobalt-containing compounds, collectively called “cobalamins”.  For example, methylcobalamin is a coenzyme form of vitamin B12 that plays a role in metabolism. While cyanocobalamin is a synthetic compound used in many nutritional supplements. Cyanocobalamin needs to be converted before it becomes active.

What does B12 do?

Vitamin B12 participates in DNA synthesis, red blood cell formation, Homocysteine metabolism, and synthesis of S-adenosylmethionine (SAMe).

It may play a role in the prevention and treatment of anxiety, depression, postpartum depression, infertility, fatigue,  and weight management.

B12 Absorption

In food, B12 is usually bound to protein. It gets released from the protein by stomach acid and pepsin. It then binds to intrinsic factor before being absorbed into the bloodstream. If stomach acid is comprised (ie. if you are taking a proton pump inhibitor like omeprazole), then you are at a high risk of developing a deficiency of this vitamin.

Signs of B12 Deficiency

  • Weak Muscles
  • Numb or tingling feeling in hands and feet
  • Trouble walking
  • Nausea
  • Decreased appetite
  • Weight Loss
  • Irritability
  • Lack of energy or tiring easily (fatigue)
  • Diarrhea
  • Smooth and tender tongue
  • Fast heart rate

Risk Factors for B12 Deficiency

  • A family history