Foods with Vitamin B12 Vegetarian: Risks and Complications

foods with vitamin b12 vegetarian

Vitamin B12 is an essential vitamin for cells. This is important for keeping your nerves, blood cells, and DNA healthy. Animal products contain this vitamin naturally. Meat, dairy, and eggs are especially good sources.

Plant-based foods do not naturally contain B12, so all vegetarians or those who follow a vegetarian diet should ensure adequate daily intake to avoid deficiencies. Lack of vitamin B12 can have serious health consequences such as pernicious anemia.

Benefits of Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 is a powerhouse of energy. It is very beneficial as it plays various roles from DNA synthesis to the prevention of anemia. Vitamin B12 plays an important role in every activity of the body.

Below are some important benefits –

  • Formation of red blood cells (RBC)
  • Prevent large birth defects
  • Prevent anemia
  • Support bone health
  • Prevent age-related eye problems
  • Increased mood and decreased frustration
  • Improve heart health

Healthy Vegetarian Sources of Vitamin B12 

Vitamin B12 is an essential nutrient that cannot be produced by our body, so you need to take it from outside. Most of the time it can be obtained from animal products. Thus, vegetarians and vegetarians have trouble taking adequate amounts of vitamin B12.

Here are some healthy vegetarian sources of vitamin B12,

Yogurt

Yogurt is a delight for vegetarians because it is one of the best sources of vitamin B12 for them. One cup of plain yogurt can provide about 28% of vitamin B12. Studies have shown that vitamin B12 in yogurt can be absorbed more easily than vitamin B12 in chicken or meat. Plain yogurt is best for reducing the symptoms of vitamin deficiency in many patients.

Milk and other dairy products

Milk is rich in vitamin B12 as well as protein, calcium, and minerals. Dairy products such as cheese, cheese is also a powerful source of this great vitamin. Milk can be absorbed quickly and easily in the stomach compared to other sources.

Fortified cereals

This is the best alternative to vitamin B12 for vegetarians. Protected cereals such as bran and whole wheat oats contain vitamin B12 as well as folate, iron, and vitamin A in regular cereals to help increase the levels of vitamin B12 in your body.

Fortified non-dairy milk

Soy and almond milk are not natural sources of vitamin B12, they are usually protected as a source of vitamin B12. One cup of soy milk or almond milk per day contains 2.1 mcg of vitamin B12.

Nutritional yeast

Protected yeast contains a lot of vitamin B12. A small amount of this yeast can give a nutty smell to food. One tablespoon of fully preserved yeast contains 2.4 mcg of vitamin B12. For better results, you can add this fortified yeast to sauces or curries.

Nori

Nori is an algae product that is rich in vitamin B12. It is also known as purple laver, commonly eaten in Asian countries. According to the study, 4 grams of dried nori is enough for daily requirements. You can take it as a simple snack or use it in sushi.

Eggs

If you are a vegetarian, this would be the best option to get vitamin B12. It is also high in vitamin B2, protein, and calcium. Studies have shown that egg yolks contain higher levels of vitamin B12 than egg whites. Therefore, it is recommended to eat whole eggs. You can have hard-boiled eggs for your breakfast or you can add them to the soup.

There are limited dietary items of vitamin B12 for vegetarians but you need to add them to your diet every day to avoid vitamin B12 deficiency.

Risks and complications

Common complications and conditions caused by B12 deficiency include anemia, neurological diseases, and the inability to divide cells.

If you do not have enough vitamin B12 in your body, you may experience the following symptoms:

  • nerve damage
  • fatigue
  • tingling in hands and feet
  • numbness
  • weakness
  • blurred vision
  • fever
  • excessive sweating
  • walking difficulties
  • digestive problems
  • sore tongue

If you experience these symptoms, talk to your doctor. Your doctor may need to perform some tests to determine if your B12 levels are normal.

FAQ

Where do vegetarians get B12?

Vegetarians have several options for sources of B12. These include eggs and dairy products, such as milk and cheese.

Do you need B12 if you are vegetarian?

Vegetarians need to make sure they get enough iron and vitamin B12, and vegans enough calcium, iron and vitamin B12. Women are thought to be at particular risk of iron deficiency, including those on a vegetarian or vegan diet.

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