Over 50 Years Old? You Are At Risk in Having a Vitamin B12 Deficiency…
The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey estimated that 3.2% of adults over age 50 have a seriously low B12 level, and up to 20% may have a borderline deficiency. Your body needs vitamin B12 to make red blood cells, nerves, DNA, and carry out other functions. The average adult should get 2.4 micrograms a day through food or supplements. Some people just don’t get enough vitamin B12 through their diets, while others can’t absorb enough B12 no matter how much they try. The problem can be slow to develop, causing symptoms to appear gradually and then intensify over time.
A Severe Vitamin B12 Deficiency Can Lead to…
- Deep depression
- Paranoia and delusions
- Memory loss
- Loss of taste and smell
- And more
People at Risk for a B12 Deficiency
- People over 50
- Patients of weight-loss surgery
- People with food absorption problems such as celiac or Crohn’s disease
- People on commonly prescribed heartburn drugs
- People who don’t eat enough meat, eggs, poultry, dairy products, and other foods from animals.
Case Study: 62 Year Old Man with Numbness in His Hands
Over the course of two months, a 62-year-old man developed numbness and a “pins and needles” sensation in his hands, had trouble walking, experienced severe joint pain, began turning yellow, and became progressively short of breath. The cause was lack of vitamin B12 in his bloodstream, according to a case report from Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital published in The New England Journal of Medicine.
- Strange sensations, numbness, or tingling in the hands, legs, or feet
- Difficulty walking (staggering, balance problems)
- A swollen, inflamed tongue
- Yellowed skin (jaundice)
- Difficulty thinking and reasoning (cognitive difficulties), or memory loss
- Paranoia or hallucinations
A serious vitamin B12 deficiency can be corrected by weekly shots of vitamin B12 or daily high-dose B12 pills. A mild B12 deficiency can be corrected with a standard multivitamin.
What We Suggest…
If you are over 50, be proactive! Have an experienced physician determine if you have a B12 deficiency through a good interview, physical exam, and a blood test to get confirmation. If your body isn’t seriously deficient in vitamin B12, then find out from your physician what you can do with your diet to improve the amount of B12 you are getting. You can also supplement your daily intake of B12 by taking a standard multivitamin that delivers 6 micrograms, which is what the average body needs daily.
Contact us (513-985-0950) today to to get more information about B12 and getting more out of life through better health!