Best Way to Get B-12

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What is the best way to get vitamin B12?

What would you recommend as far as the best way to get B12 vitamins into our system, supplements? Will any over the counter supplement do? If one were lacto-ovo vegetarian, do they get vitamin B12 from cheese and eggs?

Vas Bouras / Originally asked in Vegan B12 Deficiency: Putting it Into Perspective

Answer:

I’m so glad you asked! In my opinion, the easiest and cheapest way to get our B12 is to take at least 2,500 mcg (µg) cyanocobalamin once each week, ideally as a chewable, sublingual, or liquid supplement (you can’t take too much–all you get is expensive pee). I have a video about it here: Cheapest Source of Vitamin B12.

Or, if you’d rather get into the habit of taking something daily (instead of once-a-week), I recommend at least 250mcg (I know the math doesn’t seem to “add up” but that’s due to the vagaries of the B12 receptor system–see my video Daily Source of Vitamin B12). I also cover B12-fortified foods in that video. Such foods can be as exotic as a certain type of “nutritional yeast” or as simple as a bowl of Cheerios.

As I showed in Vegan Epidemic, ovo-lacto vegetarians are also at risk for deficiency. For why fortified foods and supplements are the best sources of B12 see my video Safest Source of B12. Eggs and dairy are not optimal sources of vitamin B12 because foods come as a package deal and eggs and dairy may bring along as baggage saturated fatcholesterol, and hormones). For more see my blog Vitamin B12: how much, how often?

Image credit: dominiquegodbout / Flickr

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Michael Greger M.D., FACLM

Michael Greger, M.D. FACLM, is a physician, New York Times bestselling author, and internationally recognized professional speaker on a number of important public health issues. Dr. Greger has lectured at the Conference on World Affairs, the National Institutes of Health, and the International Bird Flu Summit, testified before Congress, appeared on The Dr. Oz Show and The Colbert Report, and was invited as an expert witness in defense of Oprah Winfrey at the infamous "meat defamation" trial.


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