vitamin B12 – cobalamin

  • Works with B6 and Folate in Methylation reactions
  • Required for hemopoietic functions and blood cell formation
  • Brain and nerve function: assisting brain make use of carbohydrate and protein, vital for producing myelin sheath that protects axons / nerves, works as partner with Folate acid in activities such as making neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine
  • Works with Folate acid in many processes, including synthesis of DNA; reactivates Folate acid
Sources notes
  • Best sources from animal foods
  • Vegans may find it in yeast or fermented foods as it is synthesized by bacteria
Vegetable Sources
Fruit Sources
Nut and seed sources
Absorption and function notes
  • Calcium needed for absorption
  • Heat sensitive – destroyed at moderate to high heats
  • Requires release of intrinsic factor from stomach parietal cells for absorption
Deficiency factors
  • Anemia
  • Brain and nerve function: impaired mental acuity / dementia, depression
  • Impaired nerve function leading to numbness, burning
Toxicity  Extremely rare – no known toxicity

Adapted from:

Murray, M. (2005). Encyclopedia of Healing Food. New York, N.Y.: Atria Books

Bland, J., Costarella, L., Levin, B., Liska, D., Lukaczer, D., Schlitz, B., Schmidt, M., Lerman, R., Quinn, S., Jones, D. (2004). Clinical Nutrition: A Functional Approach, Second Edition. Gig Harbor, WA: The Institute for Functional Medicine.

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