With live blood analysis I see so much vitamin B12 lacking – deficiency in almost everyone – and not all for the same reasons. As more and more (young) people switch to eating vegetarian and vegan foods exclusively – for whatever reasons – environmental, spiritual or financial – and often doing it on the advice of ad-vertorials in dastardly “health” magazines that are covertly plugging products such as un-fermented soy products and spirulina and such. I shudder.
Also quite “shuddering” is the mis-diagnoses of a B12 deficiency due to masked symptoms from those we trust with our health. Depression, for example is never considered as a possible coming together of three related issues: B12 deficiency, a low thyroid and fatigued adrenals.
And inappropriate tests abound for all three of these above challenges! Instead anti-depressants (with their side-effects) are the first choice. So here are some B12 details just in case it may have some bearing on your health choices. I hope it makes a difference!
I always assumed GP’s tested for B12 once in a while to make sure all their patients have enough of this… Lack of B12 causes many issues that mimic symptoms that receive / promote many prescription medications: depression, anemia, chronic fatigue, some nervous disorders, etc.
The most important thing to know is that there are several kinds of B12 and several kinds of B12 tests – and they are not at all created equal – and described below.
For example, Analog B12, the kind that you cannot absorb, is removed from the body through the stool. If your doctor’s lab tests your stool for B12 then it’s Analog (not humanly active) that they will find and they’ll say it’s fine as after all they have just found it! The fact that that particular form of B12 is on it’s way out due to mal-absorption, doesn’t seem to occur to the interpretation. You can actually be quite deficient of the real and active absorbable B12 in spite of mainstream medical tests. We take in analog type B12 mostly from eating plant based foods, green powdered plant meal substitutes, blue-green algae, etc and it can actually block the good / right B12 from metabolizing and being absorbed.
(Analog is also found in spirulina, chlorella, sea vegetables, tempeh, barley, malted syrup, shitake mushrooms, and above all (the ultimate culprit) un-fermented soy (the beans, soy flour, many fillers, tofu, soy milk, etc) and more. It’s presence blocks the absorption of any good methylcobalamine type B12 which may also be in the meal.
Hydroxocobalamine and Methylcobalamine are the two bio-available kinds of B12’s which are found mainly in red meat: beef, lamb, buffalo and bison; less but still some is bio-available in shell fish such as clams, mussels, oysters; and also some in wild salmon, trout, haddock, tuna and most other fish; and we find a bit in egg yolks. There is virtually no B12 in chicken and pork.
For example – one egg has the same amount of physically usable B12 as 1/2 a chicken – and this is still very little). An omnivore who turns into a vegetarian can become VERY deficient in as little as 4 months! We store B12 in our livers when we take in more than our bodies require – so there’s never any wasted B12.
B12 – the Hydroxocobalamine and Methylcobalamine varieties – is what you want to see your supplements and possible B12 shots made of, too. This is the kind our bodies need, use, absorb and store.
Without B12 we can become very ill. Look for the right kind at quality health food stores – methylcobalamine – as a lot of poor quality abounds – it is very telling which companies will spend a bit more on quality content and which ones want us to blindly swallow the analog variety – the kind also known as cyanocobalamine.
B12 deficiency can parade / mimic as many conditions such as inflammation, indigestion, constipation, poor co-ordination, mood swings, depressions, the beginnings of MS such as numbness and tingling in the limbs, chronic fatigue, adrenal fatigue, infertility and increases in existing autism symptoms.
When methylcobalamine B12 is bio-available (through food and quality B12 supplements), then there is help with improving sleep quality, degenerative neurological diseases, depression, detoxing through methylation and many more important chemical reactions. B12 is intricately involved with the health of the bone marrow (where all your red and white cells are created) and the nervous system. B12 is also, as with so many complex factors in our body, a co-factor in OTHER intricate chemical pathways and a necessary and essential requirement that the body has that is not just directly related to bone marrow and nerve health.
B12 together with folic acid (B9), is a critical co-factor for the production of enzymes which methylation depends on (crucial) and which, in turn, neurotransmitters, hormones, energy production at the cellular level and detoxification are dependent upon.
What kind – some is useless – the right kinds support us?
Cyanocobalamine B12 supplements – the kind most often seen on the store shelves (always in all the big box stores) is ineffective and requires much higher dosages for only a small advantage. After this article was first published one particular MLM company that sells the cheap cyanocobalamine really lashed out – but not with any science – merely accusations and virtue-signalling.
B12 is part of a complex dance – the stomach’s hydro-chloric acid, intrinsic factor, R-protein, the intestine’s enzyme Pepsin, the intestinal bacteria and the intestinal-wall villi, all have to be in good supply, in good health and in great working order. These tend to decrease in effectiveness with age, or when not given attention while on meds and can be completely depleted and lacking from medications, anti-biotics, chemo-therapy, incorrect colon cleansing, yeast busters, chronic illness and even more chronic neglect… And all of this can cause dysbiosis (leaky gut syndrome).
Low hydrochloric acid in our stomachs causes less control of the bacteria’s environment there and then improperly creates more of the analog B12 in the intestines that blocks the beneficial B12, in spite of good food choices and supplementation (and this can lead to the common bloating complaint).
Dysbiosis reduces the necessary intrinsic factors which MUST be present for the B12 in food to be absorbed nicely in the gut. Many people have this challenge – and it is easy to fix. When there is B12 deficiency – for whatever reason – then a resultant/concurrent homosisteine deficiency can also be measured (low levels are not good for the heart). Guesswork is not advisable with an unhappy intestine. And speaking of ‘unhappy’ – the large and small intestines are responsible for a large percentage of your ‘happy’ hormone – serotonin!
Live Blood Analysis will show where the weaknesses are.
GP’s may offer various tests for B12 deficiency. This is a great idea – as long as it is not a blood test. These often deliver false positives and false negatives and also measure the free analog B12 – unproductive. It’s of no value to know that you are circulating the stuff your body doesn’t want towards the kidneys and then be told that there you have it! Your B12 is fine!
hmmm… any methylcobalamine B12 from food and supplements are immediately absorbed by the two systems that really need it – the nervous system and the bome marrow – there should be NONE left in circulation to show up in any blood test!
The most accurate and useful test is a methyl malonic acid (MMA) urine test as methyl malonate is elevated in the urine in people with B12 deficiency. In BC the urine test must be demanded or else the standard blood test is trotted out at the lab!
People taking drugs such as Omeprazole (Prolosec), Tagament, Pepsid, Zantac, Lansoprazole (Prevacid), and Metformin and people with celiac disease, malabsorption and / or Chrohn’s disease or people receiving infusions to depress white blood cels are more likely to have challenges – even when eating the right food sources.
When the digestive system is compromised, then sub-lingual (under the tongue) methylcobalamine B12 supplements can make small and gradual improvements.
Your GP may offer B12 shots – a great idea if your mercury fillings have been replaced with porcelain – otherwise there will be more harm than good. Again, check to see what kind your physician or naturopath is actually using – they may have had an eager salesperson persuade them to get the cheaper cyanocobalamine variety. Then you’ll want to get a prescription for methylcobalamine and get it filled at a natural health apothecary and take the vials home and refrigerate them and take one with you when you need your shot (doctors don’t need to refrigerate the useless cyanocobalamine).
Eating your way to B12 energetic health is a wonderful alternative option – the best option. Eat the right foods and maintain a healthy intestinal track to metabolize your fine B12 containing foods and get this essential health factor working in your favour at all times.
Use a live blood analysis session to see where your weak spots are, so that there is no guessing.
KNOW YOUR OPTIONS
Merrie Bakker B.Sc, M.Arch, CN
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Merrie Bakker – Live Blood Analyst / microscopist – Health Educator – Author – Teacher – Speaker – Editor – Hands-on-Healer – Reflexologist – Dowser – Reiki Master – Nutritional Coach – a life-long student of holistic medicine and preventative health who believes with a passion that cellular disorganization can be prevented or reversed by ortho-molecular medicine, emotional healing work, environmental detoxification (many areas of concern) and nutritional and lifestyle re-balancing (many possibilities). Combined with vigilance, monitoring and team work, clients are encouraged to detox, rebuild, re-nourish, resolve and re-educate.
This analysis is invaluable. Merrie is extremely thorough and knowledgeable and if she doesn’t know, she’ll let you know that, too. If you need a specialist, she’ll suggest that, too. This is my idea of health care versus health carelessness… But she’s also clear that you’re in your own driver’s seat.