Are You missing this Vital Nutrient?

One Crucial Vitamin You are NOT Getting Enough Of

“Eat a balanced diet and there’s little need for supplements.”

It’s a refrain we hear a lot, whether from doctors, dieticians, or even our mothers. And in many cases, it’s true. Why waste your money on pricey vitamins when you can easily get them from food?

Well, when it comes to vitamin B12, supplements not only aren’t a waste of money – they’re a crucial part of optimal health for many people.

See, not everyone can get enough B12 from diet alone. If you don’t eat animal products – the richest source of this vitamin – you could be missing out.

And if you’re over age 60, you might not even be able to absorb B12 from food.

The result: anemia or other potentially fatal deficiencies.

That’s reason enough to seek out supplements.

An added bonus?

Vitamin B12 may have big benefits for your heart, too.

A Healthy Diet Isn’t Always Enough…

There’s no doubt that vitamin B12 is essential for good health. Our bodies need the largest and most complex of the eight B vitamins to form blood cells, nerve sheaths, and certain proteins.

Researchers discovered the benefits of vitamin B12 in the 1930s, when they found that consuming large amounts of raw liver – which is high in B12 – could save the lives of patients diagnosed with pernicious anemia, a previously untreatable condition.

It was a finding so impressive that the researchers won the Nobel Prize.

But raw liver? Yuck!

Fortunately, other scientists later isolated B12 from liver, making it easier – and more palatable – to get enough of this crucial vitamin.

That’s even more important, since some groups of people just can’t get B12 from their diet.

See, no plants naturally contain B12 – it’s only found in meat and other animal-based foods, as well as fortified products like cereal.

And that’s a problem for vegetarians and vegans.

Even if you do eat meat, you still might be dangerously low in vitamin B12. That’s because an estimated 15 percent of people over age 60 lack enough intrinsic factor, a compound that helps the body absorb B12 from food.

The result?

These groups are at higher risk for developing pernicious anemia and other potentially life-threatening deficiencies.

A Natural Blood Booster…

Pernicious anemia occurs mostly in older people who lack the ability to absorb vitamin B12 properly. When B12 is low, the red blood cells don’t function as well as they should, which reduces their ability to ferry oxygen throughout the body.

Other deficiencies of B12 can lead to neurological and psychiatric problems, including muscle weakness, incontinence, dementia, and mood changes.

Research has looked at the effects of vitamin B12 supplementation on the risk of anemia and deficiency.

For example, one study of elderly people who had lower-than-normal levels of B12 found that supplementing with 50 micrograms (mcg) of the vitamin daily led to significant increases in their blood levels of B12.1

This and other evidence suggests that vitamin B12 is a necessary supplement for keeping our blood healthy.

This Vitamin’s Got Heart…

But B12 may have other benefits, too.

In fact, a newer area of research suggests that vitamin B12’s effects on the cardiovascular system may be even more impressive.

There’s good evidence that supplementing with B12 can lower blood levels of homocysteine, a compound that’s been linked to a higher risk of heart disease and stroke.

One study of 300 people found that taking 2 to 10 mcg of B12 a day was associated with decreased levels of homocysteine.2

Another study followed 299 older men for two years. The researchers found that those who supplemented with 400 mcg of B12 a day had significantly lower homocysteine levels, especially if they were previously deficient in the vitamin.3

And a study of 209 people showed that B12 supplementation (0.5 mg) lowered homocysteine after just 4 months.4

Now that’s worth taking a daily supplement!

When Supplements are a Must…

Vitamin B12 is naturally found in animal products such as beef, poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy products, as well as in some fortified foods (like cereal). But if you don’t normally consume these foods – or if you’re over age 60 – supplementation is a must.

B12 is typically combined with other B vitamins, such as B6 and folic acid, and sold as B-complex supplements. You may also be able to find individual B12 products.

The recommended daily allowance of B12 to prevent deficiency is just 2.4 mcg daily. But higher doses may be necessary if you have already been diagnosed with pernicious anemia: Sources recommend up to 1,000 mcg a day. To lower homocysteine, take 500 mcg of B12 daily, along with folic acid and vitamin B6.

Vitamin B12 appears safe even in very high doses. That said, it may rarely cause side effects in some people, including itching, diarrhea, and even blood clots. And you should avoid taking B12 if you have an allergy to cobalt, cobalamin, or other ingredients found in these supplements.

Otherwise, vitamin B12 can’t hurt – and may very well help – your health.

When Supplements are a Must…

Vitamin B12 is naturally found in animal products such as beef, poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy products, as well as in some fortified foods (like cereal). But if you don’t normally consume these foods – or if you’re over age 60 – supplementation is a must.

B12 is typically combined with other B vitamins, such as B6 and folic acid, and sold as B-complex supplements. You may also be able to find individual B12 products.

The recommended daily allowance of B12 to prevent deficiency is just 2.4 mcg daily. But higher doses may be necessary if you have already been diagnosed with pernicious anemia: Sources recommend up to 1,000 mcg a day. To lower homocysteine, take 500 mcg of B12 daily, along with folic acid and vitamin B6.

References

1 Seal EC, Metz J, Flicker L, et al. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of oral vitamin B12 supplementation in older patients with subnormal or borderline serum vitamin B12 concentrations. J Am Geriatr Soc.2002 Jan;50(1):146-51.

2Deshmukh US, Joglekar CV, Lubree HG, et al. Effect of physiological doses of oral vitamin B12 on plasma homocysteine: a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial in India. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2010 May;64(5):495-502.

3 Flicker L, Vasikaran SD, Thomas J, et al. Efficacy of B vitamins in lowering homocysteine in older men: maximal effects for those with B12 deficiency and hyperhomocysteinemia. Stroke.2006 Feb;37(2):547-9.

4 Lewerin C, Nilsson-Ehle H, Matousek M, et al. Reduction of plasma homocysteine and serum methylmalonate concentrations in apparently healthy elderly subjects after treatment with folic acid, vitamin B12 and vitamin B6: a randomised trial. Eur J Clin Nutr.2003 Nov;57(11):1426-36.

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Eat Everything!

Eat Everything!

Some people have a hard time with the idea of enjoying food, I think that feeling good is part of enjoying life and being healthy. We all have to eat- right?

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Of course, if you struggle with this part of your “food story”, and would like to rewrite it to include joy, freedom, and deliciousness – all the while working toward a better body – I can help.

Cheating Well
Most people have come across the idea of cheating on a diet… But most find it difficult to let go, eat what they really want. Frightened that once they start they won’t stop! They choose ‘naughty’ foods that are not really what they crave and long for – the trigger foods that, in the past, have led to a binge. I want you to be completely honest and select your favourite treats.

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I’m not talking some low-fat, gluten-free, protein-packed, artificially sweetened, possibly-hiding-beets, “healthy” version of a treat. I’m suggesting you include your REAL favourite foods – Pizza, Pasta, Roasters or Chips, Cake, Coke, Beer, Wine, Takeaways, Sweets, Chocolate, Cheese, BREAD…. You get the idea. From a fat loss point of view I need you to relax every 4-7 days to allow your hormones to re-set.

You will plan your cheat meal to include your REAL favourite foods, you’ll take your time selecting, eating and maybe sharing the experience with family and friends. I want you to eat guilt free, no shame, no rushing – but with intent, give yourself time to enjoy with all your senses – knowing that you’ll be increasing your Fatloss results over the following days.

Deciding how often and how many cheat meals you have is my job. Together we have to look at your physical activity, work output, diet and lifestyle.
You might fear that you’ll revert back to your ‘old thinking’ about food – fearing some ‘bad’ foods ….. Which is crazy, no food is BAD in itself! Your attitude to food may be the reason you have gained weight and unhealthy eating habits?

Over time we’ll work on what you eat, when you eat and how you eat and importantly what you believe about food. Your nutrition will improve, cravings vanish and stored body fat melt away.

Eat Clean. Train Hard. Expect Results.

Jax