Vitamin B12 is vital in brain and nervous system functions, as well as forming red blood cells and creating DNA. It also enables the release of energy in the body as it helps your body convert food into glucose. As it is such an important vitamin, it is vital that you avoid a deficiency – so a vitamin B12 vegan supplement is beneficial for your health.
While veganism is beneficial in many ways – for the environment, for animals, and for your health – you could be deficient in vitamins and minerals usually found in animal products, and vitamin B12 is a key example. A 2014 study into B12 deficiency suggested that vegans should ‘give strong consideration’ to the use of vitamin B12 vegan supplements ‘to ensure adequate vitamin B12 intake’. Vegetarians and vegans are more likely to be deficient in vitamin B12, and symptoms of this include mouth ulcers, irritability, pins and needles, irritability, and a decline in abilities such as memory, judgement and understanding. However, if you have (unknowingly) been deficient in vitamin B12 for a while you could become anaemic – meaning you have fewer red blood cells than necessary – and symptoms to look out for include fatigue, pale skin, feeling faint, breathlessness, heart palpitations, and headaches.
There are plenty of vitamin B12 vegan fortified foods that you can use to boost your B12 levels, and these foods have proven a reliable tool to avoid deficiency. These include nutritional yeast, milk (including almond, soy and coconut), and cereal. However, to get enough vitamin B12 you would need to consume these fortified foods two or three times a day, meaning that a vitamin B12 vegan supplement can help if you don’t want to consume them that often.
Different groups of people are recommended different amounts of necessary vitamin B12, including:
- People age 14 or over – 2.4 mcg
- For pregnant females – 2.6 mcg
- For lactating females – 2.8 mcg
Vitamin B12 supplements are recommended for people over 50, regardless of if they are vegan or not. Studies have shown that a vitamin B12 deficiency can put older adults at risk of dementia – so a vitamin B12 supplement is beneficial. The stomach acid that is necessary for absorbing vitamin B12 begins to decline during your 50s, so deficiencies are more likely, and vitamin B12 vegan supplements are recommended.
Vitamin B12 vegan supplements come in different forms, so you can choose the best kind for you. The most common form of supplement is in tablet form, which are the most cost-effective form and have the longest shelf-life. Also, taking a tablet rather than a capsule guarantees that it is vegan, as some capsules are made of gelatine – making them not vegan. Another option is oral sprays, which boast clinically proven superior absorption in comparison to tablets, because the B12 it offers can quickly enter the blood stream. This is also superior to capsules as you don’t have to worry about gelatine being used to encase the supplement. The last option is a B12 patch, which allows for fast and easy absorption, especially for those with digestive issues. These patches allow for direct transmission of B12 into the blood stream. With these three different options – and how each of which has its own benefits – you can use a vitamin B12 vegan supplement which is best for you in order to avoid a deficiency.
As you can see, vitamin B12 is really important and vitamin B12 vegan supplements can benefit your health and wellbeing, especially on a plant-based diet. At Vegan Supplement Store, all of our supplements are entirely vegan, and our health and wellbeing range includes a ton of healthy vitamins and minerals to support your vegan diet.