Vitamin B12 is one of those essential nutrients that our bodies need to function. It plays a crucial role in the production of red blood cells, supports a healthy nervous system, and helps in converting food into energy. Now, who wouldn’t want a bit of extra energy, right?
Here’s the kicker, though – lots of women are unwittingly running on low B12 levels, and they might not even know it! Here are some of the reasons why you might be running low:
One of the common reasons for B12 deficiency is simply not getting enough of it in the diet. Women who follow strict vegetarian or vegan diets are more susceptible because B12 is primarily found in animal products like meat, fish, eggs, and dairy. If these foods aren’t part of their regular diet, their B12 intake may be insufficient.
Even if a woman consumes enough B12 through her diet, certain medical conditions can interfere with its absorption. One such condition is pernicious anemia, an autoimmune disorder that affects the body’s ability to absorb B12 from food. Other gastrointestinal issues like celiac disease, Crohn’s disease, or surgeries involving the removal of parts of the stomach or intestines can also lead to malabsorption.
As we gracefully age, our bodies may become less efficient at absorbing nutrients, including B12. This means that older women, especially those over 50, are at a higher risk of B12 deficiency.
Now, let’s move on to the symptoms that we might start experiencing when we are running low on B12:
Fatigue and Weakness:
Feeling tired and run-down even after a good night’s sleep is one of the classic signs of B12 deficiency. If you find yourself dragging your feet throughout the day, B12 could be the culprit.
Paleness and Shortness of Breath:
B12 deficiency can lead to anemia, causing your body to have fewer red blood cells than it needs. As a result, you might experience paleness and feel short of breath, even with minimal physical exertion.
Numbness or Tingling:
B12 plays a crucial role in maintaining a healthy nervous system. When levels are low, some women may experience tingling sensations or numbness, especially in their hands, feet, or legs.
Difficulty concentrating, memory lapses, and brain fog can be symptoms of B12 deficiency. If you find yourself feeling forgetful or struggling to focus, it might be time to check those B12 levels.
Mood Swings and Depression:
Low B12 levels have been linked to mood disorders, including depression and anxiety. So, if you’ve been feeling blue, it’s worth considering a B12 check-up.
Oddly enough, deficiency in B12 can also lead to digestive issues like diarrhea or constipation.
Now, I know what you’re thinking: “Injections? Yikes!” But hear me out. These injections are quick, painless and super effective. Plus, they deliver a direct dose of B12 goodness straight into your muscles, bypassing the whole absorption issue.