Diets lacking in vitamin B-12 can be hazardous to your health – and your immunity.
It’s no surprise that one study showed a stunning 92 percent of strict vegetarians who shunned all meat and dairy were deficient in vitamin B-12.1
As a regular reader, you know that I consider vegetarian diets to be one of the most unhealthy things you can follow. Not only will it leave you feeling weak and sluggish – but it could also wreck your immunity. Let me explain.
Federal health officials have intimidated doctors into constantly cautioning patients about the dangers of red meat. But they ought to be alerting them that inadequate B-12 can compromise your immune system.
Patients deficient in B12 have fewer white blood cells and natural killer cells. These are the frontline defenders your immune system relies on to destroy viruses before they can mount an invasion.2
B-12 is also essential to red blood-cell production… patients deficient in B-12 tend to be anemic. Diabetics and those who take protein pump inhibitors like Prilosec or Prevacid are especially vulnerable.3
There’s not a single cell in your body that doesn’t need B-12. Yet the FDA’s recommended daily allowance is just 2.4 mcg. That’s way below what you need.
B12 is one of the safest vitamins there is. Whatever your body can’t use is naturally excreted.
There are several ways to get more B12 in your diet. Good food-based sources include grass-fed beef, fish, eggs, cheese, and other quality dairy products.
My advice: Focus your meals around high-quality protein… pastured beef, lamb, chicken, and other properly raised organic foods. Avoid grains and starchy potatoes.
Grass-fed red meat with organic fruit and vegetables comprise one of the most nutritious, balanced meals anyone can eat. My simple rule is buy local, organic food that’s in season.
You’ll also need a good B-12 supplement. Big Agra’s diminished food quality makes it almost impossible to get what you need from food sources alone.
One common B-12 supplement may not help you much. Called cyanocobalamin, it’s completely synthetic… an artificial, man-made form.
Your body excretes this artificial form of B-12 three times faster than natural B-12. So it may be gone before your body has a chance to use it.4
That’s why I tell my patients to supplement with the natural form of B-12, methylcobalamin. I recommend 3,000 mcg a day to keep your immune system in peak condition.
Also, look for a lozenge you can dissolve under your tongue so it gets directly into your blood stream.
With an adequate supply of B-12, you’ll step outside your door each day with renewed vigor and strength.
To Your Good Health,
Al Sears, MD, CNS
1. W. Hermann, H. Schorr, R. Obeid, J. Geisel. (2003, July) Vitamin B-12 Status, Particularly Holotranscobalamin II and Methylmalonic Acid Concentrations, and Hyperhomocysteinemia in Vegetarians. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, https://doi.org/10.10193/ajcn/78.1.131.
2. Pan, M.-H., Maresz, K., Lee, P.-S., Wu, J.-C., Ho, C.-T., Popko, J., … Badmaev, V. (2016). Inhibition of TNF-α, IL-1α, and IL-1β by Pretreatment of Human Monocyte-Derived Macrophages with Menaquinone-7 and Cell Activation with TLR Agonists In Vitro. Journal of Medicinal Food, 19(7), 663–669. https://doi.org/10.1089/jmf.2016.0030
3. Gordon, S. (2010, December 13). Acid-Reflux Drugs Tied to Lower Levels of Vitamin B-12. Retrieved November 13, 2020, from WebMD website: https://www.webmd.com/heartburn-gerd/news/20131210/acid-reflux-drugs-tied-to-lower-levels-of-vitamin-b-12#1
4. Link, R. (2020, May 12). Methylcobalamin vs. Cyanocobalamin. Retrieved November 16, 2020, from Healthline website: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/methylcobalamin-vs-cyanocobalamin#bioavailability