If weight loss were a question, there would be a lot of given responses. The problem is identifying which is the right one. According to some, Vitamin B12 falls into the category of correct answers.
The use of Vitamin B12 for weight loss is part of a growing trend of supplementing deficiencies to allow the body to correct and effectively manage itself. The ratio behind it is that if you give the body what it needs, you will have the proper tools to get optimum performance from it.
Vitamins are considered prime resources for weight loss because of how they help the metabolic processes of the body. In this case, here is a rundown of the role of Vitamin B-12 for weight loss.
What is Vitamin B12?
Vitamin B12 is a naturally occurring vitamin in some types of food. It is mainly found in food high in protein, like eggs, fish, and shellfish.
It is a water-soluble substance, meaning it can dissolve in water. This is an advantage for Vitamin B-12 for weight loss supplements because it means that it can easily be absorbed by the body. It does not need any special delivery methods. If you consume it, it can be dissolved and distributed with no absorption issues from an inability to mix with fat.
As a practical result, Vitamin B12 can be taken orally or by syringe. It can also be given as medication for severe cases or as a supplement to improve the levels found in the body.
The importance of Vitamin B-12 for weight loss is associated with the way it functions. This vitamin can come in many forms and each form has its own task to perform.
Examples of these are Methylcobalamin and 5-deoxyadenosylcobalamin, which are essential for human metabolism. The Vitamin B12 works by helping turn the food that you eat into glucose.
Glucose a type of sugar that acts as the body’s fuel to do everyday activities. Getting the right amounts of glucose is essential because, without it, a person feels lethargic.
Vitamin B12 also functions as a cofactor, which means it assists, the enzyme L methylmalonyl-COA in fat and protein metabolism.
Its association with metabolism and energy-provision is the reason why Vitamin B12 is considered a tool for weight loss.
Why is Vitamin B12 Useful for Weight Loss?
Vitamin B12 works to assist in weight loss in several ways. Some are more direct, such as a means to influence metabolism. Others, on the other hand, are less direct. An example of this is by addressing the symptoms of mental stress.
First, it is necessary to see what happens when you have a deficiency to know how Vitamin B12 can assist in weight loss.
A deficiency can occur when you do not get enough Vitamin B12. This can be caused by certain factors. Older people are susceptible to deficiency because they do not produce enough hydrochloric acid in their stomachs to absorb the Vitamin B12 in the food they eat.
In fact, most people over the age of 50 will most likely need to eat fortified food items or take dietary supplements to offset their body’s inability to get enough levels of Vitamin B12 from regular food.
Medical conditions like pernicious anemia and those who have had gastrointestinal surgery also cannot absorb enough Vitamin B12.
Since the main source of Vitamin B12 is food, the stomach is its usual gateway. If there are diseases that make digestion difficult such as celiac disease or Crohn’s disease, then it also can lead to a Vitamin B12 deficiency.
Lifestyle choices are also associated with insufficient amounts of Vitamin B12. Those who choose to refrain from animal consumption like vegetarians and vegans cannot access Vitamin B12 naturally. This is because this vitamin only appears in animal food. They will need to supplement.
Lack of Energy and Mental Issues
One of the results of a deficiency is anemia, which is a condition where the body has low levels of red blood cells. Vitamin B12 is tasked with helping form hemoglobin inside the red blood cells.
Without these hemoglobin molecules, it can be difficult to transport oxygen to the different parts of the body. Low oxygen levels result in fatigue, weakness, shortness of breath, and even nausea.
Another way the Vitamin B12 can help in weight loss is by addressing anxiety and stress. A deficiency can cause psychiatric symptoms like panic and trigger existing conditions of anxiety and depression. The reasoning behind this is that vitamin B12 regulates the proper function of the nervous system.
Nerves have a protective covering surrounding them called the myelin sheath. If there is not enough Vitamin B12, the myelin sheath is damaged. A mild deficiency can interrupt the proper functions of the brain. At its worst, the deficiency can cause permanent damage.
When it comes to weight loss, the mental effects of Vitamin B12 relates to the connection of chronic stress with an increased risk of weight gain. People with anxiety, stress, or depression can feel lethargic and feel a lack of motivation to do physical activities.
When someone is physically limited, it can be difficult to lose weight. The same goes when they do not feel the desire to do physical activities.
In the instances mentioned, Vitamin B12 is then considered an essential component in providing a person the motivation to engage in physical activity. Studies have repeatedly shown that those who get regular exercise are more likely to be within the normal weight range.
Cardio activities like walking and running are vital in any weight loss method. The same goes for muscle-building activities. An increase in muscle means more fat-burning capability. The body uses the respiratory and circulatory systems in order to properly do these activities.
But in both these types of exercises, it is important to be physically and mentally prepared. If there is a Vitamin B12 deficiency, the lack of exercise can produce low results in weight loss simply because the body is not equipped to do so.
In addition, prolonged inactivity can lead the body to have metabolic issues. There are studies that indicate that a sedentary lifestyle can affect the body’s metabolic flexibility. This is a term that is used to refer to how effectively the body can go from using carbohydrates to using fat as energy for the body.
In a healthy metabolism, the body will use fat for energy while resting and in even most kinds of exercise. If you do not have a healthy metabolic flexibility, you will have difficulty mobilizing fat stores. There is also a tendency to have more fat in the blood. Poor metabolic flexibility also reduces the muscles that burn fat and instead stores more fat tissue.
A deficiency in B12 can lead to this cycle of being unable to exercise and increasing fat. In the long-run, this can lead to even more difficulty resulting in a compounded weight-loss problem.
Vitamin B12 as an essential component of metabolism
The next part in which Vitamin B12 helps in weight loss is in its role in metabolism. It is generally believed that vitamins and minerals are part of the metabolic process. In the case of Vitamin B12, it acts as a key to activate the succinyl-CoA, which is a part of the Krebs cycle.
The Krebs cycle is a series of reactions done by living cells to produce energy during aerobic respiration. Inside the mitochondria of the cells, the Krebs cycle allows for the consumption of oxygen and then the production of carbon dioxide and water.
If you have a Vitamin B12 deficiency, this sequence is disrupted. As a result, your body is unable to get the energy from the breaking down of sugar. An inefficient metabolism leads to the body trying to store more fat as a reserve for energy.
Vitamin B12 is also essential in the metabolism of fatty acids and proteins. Fatty acids are important in the body because that is where energy is stored. A deficiency in Vitamin B12 leads to inefficient use of energy, making it more difficult to do physical activities for weight loss.
It should be noted that there’s some controversy when it comes to Vitamin B12 as a weight loss tool. However, most of criticism is the lack of scientific studies surrounding it, rather than an actual critique of its effectiveness.
It is generally considered that supplements do not improve the metabolic rates of people who have sufficient levels of Vitamin B12. However, it can be extremely useful for those with deficiencies.
What is an Effective Vitamin B12 Dose for Weight Loss?
Vitamin B12 can be consumed in different ways. First, it can come as a pill or a tablet. Vitamin B12 supplements are purchased over-the-counter from supermarkets or health food stores.
The most natural way to increase the intake of Vitamin B12 is by the consuming more food items that contain Vitamin B12. It is found primarily in animal products, such as fish, shellfish, and byproduct items like cheese and milk.
As for the fastest way to address a Vitamin B12 deficiency, an option is to get prescribed a Vitamin B12 injection. This method requires the assistance of a licensed medical professional.
In an injection, the Vitamin B12 is more concentrated. It delivers the vitamin directly into the bloodstream and is usually prescribed to people with severe anemia. An injection is also given to people who cannot tolerate the oral absorption of Vitamin B12.
The standard intakes of Vitamin B12 widely used are based on the age of a person. The average daily recommended amounts for adults are 2.4 mcg. It increases to 2.6 mcg for pregnant women.