Is Vitamin B a Must?

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A study by a group of Finnish researchers found that Vitamin B12 may help stave off Alzheimer’s. The participants in their study with the highest levels of B12 in their systems reduced their risk of developing the disease by 2%1.

Now, I know there is a lot of scientific information in the study that I could throw out here, but the bottom line is that they found enough overwhelming evidence to suggest that increasing your levels of B12 could be very beneficial to you later on.

None of us really want to think about developing Alzheimer’s, but if we know of something we can do now to prevent it later on, isn’t it worth giving a shot? You can increase your B12 levels in various ways. I suggest, first and foremost, adding foods rich in B12 to your diet. This would be things like fish, clams, oysters, mussels, caviar, liver, octopus (EWWW!), crab, lobster, beef, lamb, cheese and eggs2.

If you’re a non-meat eater, you can find B12 in protein/energy bars and fortified cereals-just make sure to read the nutrition labels and find those with low sugar! Whey powder and low-fat or skim milk also provide some B12, as does yogurt and even chicken. So it is out there, you just have to be conscious to take it in2.

If you are in doubt, though, about how much you are taking in, and worry it’s not enough, you can take Vitamin B12 supplements.
If you are deficient in B12, you can find yourself suffering from one or more of these symptoms: anemia, mania, depression, or fatigue. Taking B12 can provide a host of health benefits in addition to staving off Alzheimer’s. It protects against heart disease, protects and repairs DNA that is crucial to fighting off cancer and helps slow the aging process, and it gives you energy and endurance. So, if you are an athlete, a little extra B12 can keep you at the top of your game, longer2.

So, folks, I’ve told my pack to go out and stock up on B12 fortified foods, and hopefully you will do the same!

Sources:
1) Mann, Denise. (2010). “Study: Vitamin B12 may help ward off Alzheimer’s”. http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/10/18/health.vitamin.b12.alzheimers/index.html
2) “Top 10 Foods Highest in Vitamin B12.” (2010). Retrieved from http://www.healthaliciousness.com/articles/foods-high-in-vitamin-B12.php

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