“Taking too little of Vitamin B12 cannot harm me,” thought Taanya, after reading her blood investigations. Taanya, a young woman entrepreneur got her annual preventive health checkup done and was wondering how Vitamin B12 deficiency was affecting her body.
Vitamin B12 deficiency can be slow to develop, causing symptoms gradually but intensifies over a period of time. With the varied symptoms it causes, the condition many a time is overlooked or confused with something else.
Check out the frequent complaints or symptoms people experience when suffering from Vitamin B12 deficiency.
1. Fatigue, lack of energy, or generalized weakness:
Fatigue is one of the first sign to reflect low levels of Vitamin B12 in your body. This is because Vitamin B12 helps in making of red blood cells which are responsible for carrying oxygen throughout your body. And, without enough oxygen, you feel tired all the time despite a good 8-hour sleep.
2. Pale skin:
Your rosy skin complexion starts getting yellowish. This happens due to lack of red cells production because of deficiency of Vitamin B12. It leads to the paleness of skin or a slight yellowish tinge in the skin.
3. Numbness and tingling in hands and feet:
You may feel strange sensation often described as pins and needle sensation in hands and feet. This happens because of nerve damage caused by a decrease in oxygen levels in the cells. This happens if you are low on Vitamin B 12 for a long duration.
4. Confusion, brain fog, forgetfulness :
If you often struggle hard to recall your relative’s name or if you forgot where you kept your specs or just get confused about simple basic daily routine things then get your Vit. B12 levels checked. You might be deficient in Vitamin B12.
Lack of Vitamin B12 wrecks a havoc on your moods. You seem to be easily agitated and have a depressing mood all the time. A small trigger is enough to make you cry inconsolably. Factually, Vit. B12 helps in the release of few mood enhancer hormones such as serotonin and dopamine.
6. Breathlessness, lightheadedness:
Vitamin B12 deficiency can make you feel dizzy on exertion. You may also feel shortness of breath with mild exercise or by just climbing a flight of stairs. It happens because of lack of oxygen to your blood cells.
7. Loss of balance:
If vitamin B 12 deficiency is untreated for long, there is a damage to your nervous system which would affect your balance and coordination making you more vulnerable to falls.
8. Swollen, red tongue or bleeding gums :
People with Vitamin B12 deficiency tend to suffer from sore and red throat known as Glossitis and mouth ulcers. It has been commonly observed that people with long-standing deficiency have decreased taste sense.
If you are having any of the above symptoms, consult your doctor. Your recommended daily intake of Vitamin B12 should be around 2.4 micrograms per day as an adult(14 years plus)while children of age group 9-13 years require only 1.8 micrograms per day. This deficiency is, however, more common in strict vegetarians and vegans.
Following are some Vitamin B12 rich foods which you may include in your diet:
– Shitake mushrooms
Taking a healthy and a nutritious diet plays a vital role in our life. Listen to your body for the signs, to ensure a timely preventive approach.
Be informed, Be healthy.