Vitamin B12 is an important vitamin when it comes to producing red blood cells in the body. If the body does not get enough vitamin B12 the body will fail to make enough red blood cells and they will become unusually large. A short supply of red blood cells deprives the body's oxygen tissues and organs, triggering vitamin B12 deficiency anemia called in full. This can then lead to problems with the heart and lungs as the heart gets it difficult to get oxygen to vital organs.
So what are the symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency?
One sign that may mean you have the condition is yellow eyes.
If you have a vitamin B12 deficiency you could develop jaundice, according to Bupa.
This makes a person look bright or has a spindle register on the skin.
The eyes can also be affected, with the white turning yellow.
Red blood cell fragility when vitamin B12 deficiency means many of them break the dawn and cause excessive bilirubin.
Bilirubin is produced by the liver when it breaks down old blood cells and is slightly red or brown.
Large amounts of bilirubin are what gives a yellow cover to the skin and the eyes – jaundice.
Other signs of vitamin B12 deficiency are: t
- Feeling very tired
- Even disorder after a little exercise
- Heart palpitations
- Smaller appetite
- Sore mouth and tongue
Vitamin B12 is found naturally in foods that come from animals only, but there are also some non-animal products that contain extra vitamin B12.
London North West Healthcare lists sources of vitamin B12 – five are:
- Milk – all milk contains vitamin B12, but boiling can destroy vitamin B12 so it is important to drink milk that is not boiled. A 200ml glass of milk each day is enough to meet the vitamin B12 requirement.
- Flakes Bran
- Spread of milkless sunflower
Adults aged 19-64 need about 1.5mg of vitamin B12 a day.
If someone has trouble getting enough vitamin B12 in their diet, their GP may recommend that they have injections or tables.
The Department of Health advises if you take vitamin B12 supplements, not to take too much as this could be harmful.
Take 2mg or less per day of vitamin B12 in supplements if it is unlikely to cause any harm.