What is Vitamin B12 - Methylcobalamin
Methylcobalamin is a form of bio-active Vitamin B12 that is well absorbed and crosses the blood-brain barrier more effectively than other forms of B12. This makes it suitable for general/systemic wide B12 deficiency, and more uniquely for brain/nerve disorders. It is the form of vitamin B12 active in the central nervous system. It is essential for cell growth and replication. In some people, the liver may not convert cyanocobalamin, the common supplemental form of vitamin B12, into adequate amounts of methylcobalamin needed for proper neuronal functioning. Methylcobalamin may exert its neuroprotective effects through enhanced methylation, acceleration of nerve cell growth, or its ability to maintain already healthy homocysteine levels. For methylcobalamin to be available to the brain, it should be allowed to dissolve in the mouth.*
The body relies on the efficient conversion of carbohydrates and fatty acids to glucose, the body's fuel. Vitamin B12 plays a major role in that conversion.
Why vitamin B12 deficiency should be resolved
The body depends on vitamin B12 for many vital processes, including those listed below
- Maintaining normal energy levels*
- Healthy neurological functioning, including mental alertness and clarity*
- Supporting normal homocysteine levels for healthy cardiac function*
- Helping to ease occasional stress and sleeplessness*
- Maintaining healthy cell growth and repair*
- Promoting normal immune function*
- Supporting normal metabolism of carbohydrates and fats*
Extra energy is just one of B12's many health benefits, Vitamin B12 confers other health benefits too, some of which are listed below
- Helps folic acid regulate the formation of red blood cells*
- Helps the body use iron*
- Essential for proper digestion, food absorption, carbohydrate and fat metabolism*
- Help keep your nervous system healthy*
- Helps in cell formation and cellular longevity*
- Supports female reproductive health*
- Promotes normal nerve growth and development (by maintaining the fatty sheaths that cover and protect your nerve endings*
- Critical to circulation and adrenal hormone production*
- Helps boost your immunity*
- Supports a healthy mood and feelings of well-being*
- Excellent support for your memory, mental clarity, and concentration*
Some of the symptoms of Vitamin B12 deficiency include....
- Tiredness and feelings of weakness*
- Less-than-optimal nervous system functioning*
- Less-than-optimal eye health*
- Loss of appetite and unintended weight loss*
- Occasional constipation and gas*
- Feelings of mild moodiness*
- Less-than-optimal memory*
- A tendency toward nervousness*
- Less-than-optimal balance*
- Less-than-optimal liver or heart health*
- Premature grey hair*
- Occasional digestive issues*
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When blood levels of vitamin B12 are low, one or more of these processes may be affected. Without adequate B12, one can experience symptoms related to low energy, mental fatigue, mood changes, sleep difficulties, and even occasional indigestion.
The body relies on the efficient conversion of carbohydrates and fatty acids to glucose, the body's fuel. Vitamin B12 plays a major role in that conversion.
The older one gets the more likely a vitamin B12 deficiency becomes. Vitamin B12 deficiency comes about from either not getting enough in your diet and/or from losing the ability to absorb it.
As one age the digestive system deteriorates (especially with a western diet). The lining of the stomach loses its ability to produce hydrochloric acid which releases vitamin B 12 from your food. The use of antacids or anti-ulcer drugs will also lower your stomach acid secretion and decrease your ability to absorb vitamin B12. Infection with Helicobacter pylori, a common contributor to stomach ulcers, can also result in vitamin B12 deficiency.
However the main cause of vitamin B12 deficiency is a term researcher’s call "food-cobalamin malabsorption syndrome". Cobalamin is the scientific term for vitamin B12. This typically results when the stomach lining loses the ability to produce the protein that binds to vitamin B12 and allows your body to absorb it at the end of your small intestine.
Many people often feel tired, run-down, and lacking in energy. Low energy is a major health complaint. One of the main reasons for this is the regular consumption of refined/processed foods, which are:
- Depleted of vital nutrients
- Loaded with sugar
- Full of chemicals
- Overloaded with food colorings and preservatives.
Add to this the harmful effects of caffeine, pollution, conventional therapies, and the stress most people experience every day.
Vitamin B12 Deficiency Dangers
B12 Deficiency can lead to a wide variety of health problems and reduce the quality of life of the sufferer significantly. Because Vitamin B12 is tied so closely with our cellular function and health, too little could mean problems in any of our body’s systems.
People who are most at risk of a Vitamin B12 deficiency are those with an MTHFR genetic mutation, vegans, vegetarians and anyone who doesn’t normally consume seafood and red meat. See below to find out what MTHFR genetic mutations is, but simply put: There are over 50 variants of MTHFR, it is most commonly broken down into either C677t or A1298. The C667t variation is more commonly associated with heart disease and stroke, while the A1298 variation is most commonly associated with chronic illnesses. However, with either variety you can experience an extremely wide variety of ailments and health conditions.
Numerous elderly people suffering from neurological impairment find that B12 supplementation greatly improves their cognitive function. Published studies show that vitamin B12 in supplement form is absorbed better by elderly people than vitamin B12 that is bound to food.
Are you or do you know someone who is a shift worker? It has been shown Vitamin B12 Methylcobalamin can help. It's well established that shift workers have more trouble falling asleep and staying asleep. Poor sleep quality is probably why they have a greater susceptibility to illnesses, including cancer, and have more accidents than other sectors of the population.
In a recent study, subjects that were given Methylcobalamin, experienced improved sleep quality and increased daytime alertness and concentration, and in some cases, they also reported improved mood. Much of the benefit appears to be a result of Methylcobalamin's influence on melatonin secretion and resetting the biological clock. Specifically, Methylcobalamin causes a significant decrease in daytime melatonin levels while increasing nighttime levels.
B12 Methylcobalamin makes adrenaline from norepinephrine and melatonin from serotonin. It is crucial for the transcription of DNA and other entities. To convert harmful homocysteine into the beneficial antioxidant, methionine, a methyl group is required. Methylcobalamin provides it thereby protecting your cardiac system.
Roughly 45% of people suffer from a MTHFR defect, causing nutrient deficiencies and impeding countless bodily functions. This leads to poor cellular health, hormonal imbalances, decreased immune function, mitochondrial dysfunction and more, all leading to the manifestation of disease and the onset of cognitive decline.
The MTHFR gene mutation inhibits Glutathione production, which makes you far more vulnerable to damage from stress and exogenous toxins. The accumulation of these toxins and heavy metals combined with damage caused by oxidative stress, leads to disease and rapid premature aging.
Broken down into categories, here is a sample of some of the symptoms of MTHFR.
Symptoms of MTHFR C677t
· Elevated Homocysteine Levels
· Cardiovascular Disease
· Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
· Peripheral Neuropathy
Symptoms of MTHFR A1298C
· Parkinson’s Disease
· Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
If you suffer from both MTHFR C677t and A1298C the symptoms of both apply, and often much more severely.
MTHFR Aggravating Factors
Aggravating factors for MTHFR include excessive exposure to heavy metals through certain fish, cookware, amalgam fillings, and hygiene products. This is because MTHFR inhibits our body’s ability to chelate these heavy metals, allowing them time to accumulate in the body and cause severe damage to our health. Especially detrimental to our cognitive health.
A poor diet that is high in processed foods and void of nutrients will be magnified by the MTHFR gene mutation. This is because MTHFR causes nutrient deficiencies all its own, hampering our body’s ability to process and manufacture vital nutrients. Making it absolutely essential to practice a healthy diet and supplement key nutrients to promote overall health and improve the methylation cycle.
Supplements for MTHFR Treatment
In order to target the cause of MTHFR you need to supplement your levels of a few key vitamins. Specifically Vitamin B12 Methylcobalamin, Vitamin B6 Pyridoxal-5-Phosphate and Vitamin B9 Methyl folate. These vitamins are essential for the methylation cycle, allowing the body to perform countless vital functions including produce Glutathione.
Acetyl Glutathione is another key supplement for MTHFR treatment. Because the body’s levels of GSH are severely lowered in individuals with MTHFR, promoting Glutathione levels directly is extremely beneficial. While most oral Glutathione supplements are virtually ineffective due to a breakdown in the GI tract, Acetyl Glutathione allows for optimal absorption and maximum benefit. Making it crucial to choose a top-quality Glutathione supplement formulated specifically for maximum absorption and benefit.
Once the methylation cycle begins to return to normal, homocysteine levels will drop, energy levels will increase and the folate required for DNA synthesis will allow damaged cells to be repaired properly. This leads to an increase in endogenous Glutathione production and a substantial improvement in well-being and total health.
Understanding the MTHFR Gene Mutation
The methylation cycle is a process in which a single molecule (the methyl donor) transfers a methyl group, consisting of 3 hydrogen atoms and 1 carbon atom (CH3) to another molecule. This second molecule becomes methylated, this is an essential process that is responsible for our body’s Glutathione production and a myriad of other effects.
MTHFR defects are classified as heterozygous or homozygous. The heterozygous form of MTHFR means you have 1 affected gene and 1 normal. Translating into roughly 60% methylation efficiency. The homozygous class means both genes are abnormal and methylation efficiency drops to between 10%-20%.
MTHFR Put Simply
Broken down more simply, the methyl group is responsible for repairing the damaged cell. When our cells are damaged due to free radical damage or toxins, this methylation cycle inserts the new methyl group into the protein cell.
The transfer of information from one generation of DNA cell to the next is heavy influenced by the methylation cycle. An optimal methylation cycle ensures protein cells and DNA cells remain healthy and function properly.
This very same repair process detoxifies our body by neutralizing harmful homocysteine amino acids and turning them into methionine. The level of homocysteine in our body is a direct indicator of how old we are biologically speaking. Increasing the risk of heart disease, stroke, high cholesterol, dementia, liver disease, birth defects, and depression.
The Methylation Cycle’s Effects
· Vital for the production of Coenzyme Q10, Energy, Creatine, Melatonin, Phosphatidylcholine and Carnitine.
· Responsible for the synthesization of proteins that make hormones, neurotransmitters and numerous immune components.
· Preventing gene overexpression.
· Regulating sulfur metabolism which is required to detoxify our body and cells.
· Involved in the fabrication of phospholipids and myelin in the brain and our nervous system.
· Required for our cellular mediated immune function such as T-Cells.
· A necessary piece of the metabolism of Folic Acid.
· Needed to convert hazardous homocysteine into mood-elevating methionine.
Staying Young with Methylation
If there were a best single way to determine how rapidly you were aging, it would definitely be gauged by methylation rate.
Just as Glutathione levels start to diminish as we age, as does our rate of methylation. The methylation process is responsible for Glutathione production as well as a plethora of other vital functions.
It is easy to see why we become susceptible to disease, infection, cellular dysfunction, and cognitive decay as we age. As soon as our methylation cycle begins to diminish, the process of dying starts. This process lasts a few decades, but signs and symptoms can appear rather quickly.
By promoting a healthy methylation cycle, you are promoting total cellular health, immune function and decreasing your biological age substantially. At the very root of anti-aging, methylation is the key to a long healthy life.
Vitamin B12 deficiency is more common than previously thought, not limited to vegetarians who were previously seen as the "primary" group suffering from this deficiency. It is common also in the over-60s (as high as 25% of this group). Furthermore, the evidence is now emerging that other age groups may also have a deficiency.
If You Avoid Meat, You Probably Need to Take B12
Vegetarians have an increased need for vitamin B12
Many people avoid red meats for a large variety of reasons. However, this puts one at high risk for developing a vitamin B12 deficiency, because plant sources have virtually no vitamin B12 and most oral (non-sublingual) forms of B12 in nearly all supplements are practically useless, as little is absorbed into your bloodstream.
Vegetarians should take this essential micronutrient to ensure an adequate supply of it, because it is found almost exclusively in animal tissues. The few plant foods that are sources of B12 are actually B12 analogs, not the form that provides all the benefits of the real deal. A B12 analog is a substance that blocks the uptake of true B12, the result being, the body's need for the nutrient actually increases.
Vitamin B12 Role in Insomnia
If you suffer from sleeping difficulties, daytime B12 supplementation may help. B12 plays a vital role in melatonin production. Melatonin has been called "the sleep hormone" because it is responsible for letting you get a good night's sleep. As one age, it becomes increasingly more difficult to get a good night's sleep because the body becomes less efficient at making this hormone.
Sometimes even those who eat foods rich in B12 may need to supplement. Even if one eats plenty of meat, poultry, lamb's liver, brewer's yeast, clams, eggs, herring, mackerel, kidneys, milk, dairy products, seafood, low levels of B12 may still prevail. This is possible because the body is unable to absorb it from the gut. Vitamin B12 needs the help of a protein in order to be absorbed. That protein is called intrinsic factor. And because the lining of your stomach makes intrinsic factor, people with less-than-optimal gastrointestinal health often need to supplement with B12.
Likewise, most people over the age of 50 have a limited ability to absorb B12 too, thus, the need for supplementation.
Sublingual B12 is preferred as evidence indicates that most of the vitamin goes via the lymphatic system. Therefore, this treatment model may yield more benefit by avoiding the digestive system.
Methylcobalamin is the form of vitamin B12 active in the central nervous system. It is essential for cell growth and replication. In some people, the liver may not convert cyanocobalamin, the common supplemental form of vitamin B12, into adequate amounts of methylcobalamin needed for proper neuronal functioning. Methylcobalamin may exert its neuroprotective effects through enhanced methylation, acceleration of nerve cell growth, or its ability to maintain already healthy homocysteine levels. For methylcobalamin to be available to the brain, it should be allowed to dissolve in the mouth.
Vitamin B12 for Serious Health Conditions
High-dose sublingual Vitamin B12 has been found, in many cases, to help relieve Alzheimer's disease, multiple sclerosis, bipolar disorder (especially depression), psychotic depression, violent behavior, paranoid psychosis, asthma, allergies, low immunity and chronic fatigue. Vitamin B12 in the form of Methylcobalamin is non-toxic and crosses the blood-brain barrier and is therefore especially beneficial in the brain and neurological disorders.
LifeSource Vitamins Methyl B Lozenges. Methylcobalamin is a form of bio-active B12 that is well absorbed and crosses the blood-brain barrier more effectively than other forms of B12. This makes it suitable for general/systemic wide B12 deficiency. *
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Disclaimer: All the information contained throughout this website is based upon the opinion of the founder of LifeSource Vitamins, Bruce Brightman, and the entire team at LifeSource Vitamins whose relentless research and studies have been ongoing since 1992. Other articles and information are based on the opinions of the authors, who retain the copyright as marked on the article. The information on this site is not intended to replace your health care professional, but to enhance your relationship with them. Doing your own studying and research and taking your health care into your own hands is always best, especially in partnership with your health care professional. If you are pregnant, nursing, taking medications, or have any medical conditions, always consult your health care professional before taking supplements based on the information on this site.