If you are a vegan or vegetarian, you should make sure you know about the importance of getting enough vitamin B12 in your diet. According to the National Institutes of Health, vitamin B12 helps the body make DNA and keeps the body's nerve and blood cells healthy. It's essential that everyone get enough B12 in their diet or they can run into health problems, including tiredness, constipation, anemia, numbness or tingling in your hands and feet, depression, dementia, poor memory, balance problems, and more.
Vitamin B12 is found naturally in animal based foods (the animals get it from the soil), and it is added to many vegetarian and vegan products (such as cereals, nutritional yeast, etc.). Still, as a vegetarian or vegan, you want to make sure you are meeting your B12 needs. If you wonder if you have a B12 shortage, you can order up your own blood test to have it tested. About a year ago, I got mine tested and found that it was low, so I've been diligently taking a B12 supplement ever since. Truth be told, many people are not getting enough vitamin B12, it's not just vegetarians and vegans who are not getting enough. According to Harvard Health, 3.2% of adults over the age of 50 have seriously low B12, and up to 20% of the population have borderline B12 deficiency. This is just not vegetarians and vegans they are referring to, this is the general adult population in the US.
The recommended amount of B12 you are supposed to get is 2,500 mc per week. You can take a tablet per day to equal up to that amount per week, or you can just take one per week that covers it. In our house, we take the one per week route, opting for a B12 supplement that is 3,000 mc. This ensures we meet our weekly B12 requirements. We take the Nature's Made sublingual B12 that is 3,000 mc. It's vegan and one tablet gives you all the B12 you need for the week. The jar has 40 tablets, so if you take one per week it will cost you around 23 cents per week to meet your B12 needs. That's a good deal!
Don't take chances when it comes to vitamin B12. Spend the quarter per week to ensure your B12 needs are being met, so that you can help to avoid the many health problems that can result if you become deficient.