Vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin, is a form of vitamin B found naturally in animal products. It is essential for our body’s metabolism and needs to be consumed regularly. Although it can be bought as a supplement or added to other forms of food and drink, it can also be made in a laboratory environment or naturally through fermentation. In this article we will explain how you can make your own Vitamin B12 at home.
To make Vitamin B12, the process begins with obtaining some sort of raw material that contains cobalamin; this raw material can come from several sources including certain types of bacteria, yeast and algae. The raw material is then fermented which allows the bacteria or other microorganisms to reproduce and form colonies of cobalamin molecules within the culture medium. These colonies will then form crystals that are harvested from the liquid medium for further use in laboratories or for human consumption.
The next stage in making Vitamin B12 involves separating out the crystallized forms of cobalamin from other compounds within the culture medium such as proteins and fatty acids. This is typically done with a type of column chromatography which allows scientists to isolate the desired components from other materials that may be present within the mixture before finally purifying them through high temperature extraction methods.
Finally, after purification has been completed, these purified crystallized forms of vitamin B12 are packaged in tablets or capsules for easy ingestion by humans who wish to maintain optimal levels of this important vitamin in their bodies without having to buy supplements every month.
Sources of Vitamin B12
Vitamin B12 is an incredibly important nutrient for the human body. It helps regulate the nervous system, energy levels, metabolism, and so much more. Fortunately, vitamin B12 is available in a variety of forms, from fortified foods to supplements.
In this article, we will look at the various sources of vitamin B12 and the best ways to get it into your body:
- Fortified foods
Animal products are some of the most common sources of dietary vitamin B12. Animal proteins such as meat, poultry, fish, dairy, eggs and shellfish all contain B12. For example, a 3-ounce serving of cooked beef contains 2.7 micrograms (mcg) of vitamin B12. Fish is another excellent source; 3 ounces of cooked salmon contains 4 mcg and cooked tuna provides 1.8 mcg. Other seafood sources include clams (84 mcg per 3 ounces), scallops (2.4 mcg per 4 ounces), and crabmeat (3.5 mcg in a 4-ounce portion).
Eggs are also an excellent source of vitamin B12; one large egg contains 0.6 mcg. Dairy products such as milk, yogurt and cheese contain varying amounts depending on the product – skim milk 1 cup provides 1.2 mcgs while whole milk provides only 0.9 mcgs – but they are all an important source in a balanced diet.
Fortified foods can also be valuable sources of vitamin B12 – cereal, plant-based milks and mock meats often contain high levels although you should check the labeling to be sure!
Fortified foods are a popular source of vitamin B12, widely available in grocery stores. These foods are enriched with nutritional elements that either were not originally found or appear in limited quantities in the natural or original food. Examples of fortified foods include breakfast cereals, bread products, some plant-based milk alternatives, and yeast extracts such as Marmite and Vegemite.
Read the label to make sure it contains vitamin B12. As with any other food product, check the expiration date when buying fortified foods to make sure you get the most nutritional value from your purchase.
Vitamin B12 is a micronutrient that plays an essential role in the formation of red blood cells, the proper functioning of the nervous system, and the production of DNA. Since it cannot be made by the body, it must be obtained from dietary sources or supplements.
Supplements provide an easy way to ensure adequate intake of vitamin B12 for those at risk for deficiency. However, health experts advise against relying solely on supplements; instead, these should merely serve as an addition to a varied diet rich in fruits and vegetables.
Supplements are available in various forms and can be purchased without a prescription. The most common types include cyanocobalamin (most commonly found in multi-vitamins) and methylcobalamin (often used as a stand-alone supplement). Hydroxocobalamin is another form used as injection therapy but is not available OTC (over-the-counter). It’s beneficial to confirm which B12 form is best suited to meet your needs with your physician or nutritionist before taking any supplements.
Benefits of Vitamin B12
Vitamin B12 is an essential vitamin which is important for the normal functioning of our body. It helps regulate hormones, metabolism, and energy levels, as well as keeping the nervous system healthy. It also promotes good mental health and reduces stress. Vitamin B12 has various associated benefits including helping to reduce fatigue, aiding in digestion, and boosting immunity levels. It has also been linked to reducing birth defects in pregnant women, improving vision and memory, controlling cholesterol levels, and protecting against certain types of cancer.
In order to get adequate levels of Vitamin B12 in our diets we either need to eat foods that are naturally abundant in B12 or take supplements to ensure that we are getting enough of this vitally important nutrient. Foods such as:
- Fish – including salmon and trout
- Beans – including black beans and kidney beans
- Cereals like fortified bran flakes
- Dairy products such as yogurt and milk
are all excellent sources of Vitamin B12. Additionally, fortified foods such as some breakfast cereals will often contain added Vitamin B12 for an extra boost of this crucial vitamin. If a person chooses not to include these items as part of their diet there are several types of supplements that can be taken orally or injected into the body for increased efficacy. While these supplements can be used safely when taken according to package directions there can be unpleasant side effects like nausea if too high a dose is taken so it’s important to always follow instructions carefully when taking such products.
Recommended Daily Intake
Vitamin B12 is an important nutrient for many of the body’s vital functions. It plays a role in making DNA, helping the body to make new cells, and keeping the nervous system functioning correctly. It is recommended that people get a minimum of 2.4 micrograms (mcg) of vitamin B12 each day from either food or supplements. Other than sunlight exposure when supplemented with 35–200 mcg per day, food sources are the only way for vegans and vegetarians to get vitamin B12 in their diets.
The following foods are good sources of vitamin B12:
- Meat, poultry and fish: Beef, lamb, pork, chicken, turkey and fish contain good amounts of vitamin B12. Canned sardines are also a good source of this nutrient.
- Dairy products: Milk and yogurt contain smaller amounts but they’re still helpful in getting your daily dose of B12 if you eat multiple servings a day.
- Fortified breakfast cereals: Many brands offer fortified breakfast cereals that could supply 50% or more of your daily need for vitamin B12 if you’re not eating animal products such as dairy or eggs. It’s better to opt for unsweetened Iron Fortified multigrain cereal as it contains no added sugar and no artificial sweeteners.
- Eggs: One large egg contains around 0.6 mcg of vitamin B12 which is approximately 25% include foods made from fortified yeast such as Marmite or Vegemite can provide some Vitamin B12 but it is best to supplement with tablets due to their low strength tablets provide higher doses than producing organically in yeast cells.
For vegetarians and vegans who do not consume eggs or animal products on a regular basis, it may be necessary to take supplements as an adjunct to foods that naturally contain small amounts including legumes (such as peanuts), vegetables (such as spinach), fruits (such as strawberries), nuts (such as almonds) seeds and other plant-based sources including seaweed specifically many types brown algae like Wakame which can have naturally occurring type b 12 attached.
Tips for Increasing Vitamin B12 Intake
Vitamin B12 is an essential vitamin found naturally in certain animal-based foods and available as a supplement or fortified food. It helps your body produce red blood cells and keep its nerve and blood cells healthy. Getting enough B12 in your diet can be challenging, especially for people following a vegan or vegetarian diet. Here are some tips to help increase your vitamin B12 intake:
- Eat more fortified plant-based foods: many plant-based milks, cereals, breads, veggie burger products, and nutritional yeast contain added vitamin B12 which can help increase the amount of B12 you get from eating plant-based diets.
- Take supplements: taking an oral supplement or injections of vitamin B12 may be beneficial for people with poor absorption due to digestive issues or vegan/vegetarian diets.
- Increase your consumption of animal foods: fish such as clams, trout, salmon, tuna, mackerel and sardines are all great sources of vitamin B12 as well as eggs, cheese and yogurt. Be sure to look for organic options when available to limit exposure to pesticides and other additives.
- Ask Your doctor about Vitamin B12 Shots: if you think you may have a deficiency in Vitamin B12 then talking to your doctor about getting a Vitamin B12 shot might be beneficial for you as it can help provide you with an immediate dose of the Vitamin until you figure out how to adjust your diet accordingly if needed.
Vitamin B12 (cobalamin) is an essential nutrient that is required for healthy nerve cells, red blood cells, and DNA. The body cannot make Vitamin B12, so it must be obtained through adequate dietary intake.
Animal foods like eggs, dairy products and meats are the best sources of B12. For vegetarians and vegans, it can be difficult to obtain enough B12 from food sources alone, but fortified foods such as breakfast cereals can provide appropriate amounts of this important nutrient in the diet. In addition to dietary sources, supplementation with a Vitamin B12 supplement may be necessary for some individuals in order to ensure adequate intake and prevent deficiency.