Vitamin B-12 (cobalamin) performs an important position in red blood cell formation, cell rate of metabolism, nerve functionality and the production of DNA, the molecules inside of cells that carry genetic facts.

Food items resources of vitamin B-12 contain poultry, meat, fish and dairy goods. Vitamin B-12 is also included to some meals, these as fortified breakfast cereals, and is offered as an oral dietary supplement. Vitamin B-12 injections or nasal spray may well be approved to treat vitamin B-12 deficiency.

Vitamin B-12 deficiency is not typical in the U.S. Having said that, people who abide by a vegetarian or vegan diet plan may well be inclined to deficiency mainly because plant meals will not incorporate vitamin B-12. More mature grownups and people with digestive tract conditions that have an impact on absorption of nutrition also are vulnerable to vitamin B-12 deficiency.

Left untreated, a vitamin B-12 deficiency can guide to anemia, tiredness, muscle weak spot, intestinal issues, nerve problems and temper disturbances.

The advisable every day amount of money of vitamin B-12 for grownups is 2.4 micrograms.


Exploration on the use of vitamin B-12 for specific pursuits and conditions reveals:

  • Coronary heart and blood vessel condition. Scientists experienced earlier thought that vitamin B-12, when put together with folic acid (vitamin B-nine) and vitamin B-six, may well prevent diseases of the coronary heart and blood vessels by lessening the amounts of an amino acid in the blood (homocysteine). Having said that, reports demonstrate that the blend of these vitamins will not appear to lower the possibility or severity of cardiovascular condition and stroke.
  • Dementia. Vitamin B-12 deficiency is related with dementia and very low cognitive functionality, but it truly is not obvious irrespective of whether vitamin B-12 supplements may well aid prevent or treat dementia.
  • Athletic efficiency. Unless you have a vitamin B-12 deficiency, there’s no evidence that vitamin B-12 supplements will boost your electrical power or make you a better athlete.

Our consider

Green light: Generally safe

Frequently safe

Most people get enough vitamin B-12 from a well balanced diet plan. Having said that, more mature grownups, vegetarians, vegans and people who have conditions that have an impact on their skill to take in vitamin B-12 from meals may well advantage from the use of oral supplements.

Vitamin B-12 supplements also are advisable for ladies who are pregnant or breastfeeding exclusively and abide by vegetarian or vegan diet plans.

Basic safety and facet consequences

When taken at suitable doses, vitamin B-12 supplements are commonly deemed safe. Whilst the advisable every day amount of money of vitamin B-12 for grownups is 2.4 micrograms, larger doses have been found to be safe. Your overall body absorbs only as much as it requires, and any extra passes through your urine.

Significant doses of vitamin B-12, these as people made use of to treat a deficiency, may well result in:

  • Headache
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Tiredness or weak spot
  • Tingling feeling in arms and toes


Achievable interactions contain:

  • Aminosalicylic acid (Paser). Taking this drug made use of to treat digestive issues may well lower your body’s skill to take in vitamin B-12.
  • Colchicine (Colcrys, Mitigare, Gloperba). Taking this anti-inflammatory drug made use of to prevent and treat gout attacks may well minimize your body’s skill to take in vitamin B-12.
  • Metformin (Glumetza, Fortamet, other individuals). Taking this diabetic issues drug may well lower your body’s skill to take in vitamin B-12.
  • Proton pump inhibitors. Taking omeprazole (Prilosec), lansoprazole (Prevacid) or other belly acid-lessening drugs may well minimize your body’s skill to take in vitamin B-12.
  • Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) supplements. Taking vitamin B-12 with vitamin C may well lower the offered amount of money of vitamin B-12 in your overall body. To keep away from this interaction, consider vitamin C two or additional several hours just after getting a vitamin B-12 dietary supplement.

Your physician may well advise modifying drugs or timing doses to offset any possible interactions.