Vitamin B12 is a nutrient that is essential to your body’s ability to function properly, especially functions that are related to body weight and metabolism. If you are deficient in B12, your metabolism, energy levels, mental health, and the ability of your blood to transport oxygen may be effected. If you’ve been having trouble losing weight, vitamin B12 injections might help you. Call Nubo Spa in Berkeley, CA to discuss your options.
What Is Vitamin B12?
Vitamin B12 is one of eight B vitamins that assist with the body’s ability to metabolize food into energy. They help maintain healthy skin, hair, eyes, and nails, as well as keep your liver functioning properly. They’re water-soluble compounds, which means they’re not stored in the body. This means you must ingest vitamin B12 every day to ensure you’re getting enough.
How Does It Work?
For the body to absorb vitamin B12, a substance known as intrinsic factor must be present. This substance attaches itself to vitamin B12 molecules and carries them to the intestines where they can be absorbed into the body. Some people have medical or genetic conditions that prohibit their bodies from producing enough intrinsic factor to meet their body’s daily B12 needs, often resulting in a deficiency.
Once absorbed into the body, vitamin B12 helps maintain healthy nerve cells by strengthening the myelin sheath that protects the network of nerves as it courses its way through your body. B12 also aids in the production of DNA. In conjunction with vitamin B9, B12 helps in the creation of hemoglobin in red blood cells. Hemoglobin is what makes red blood cells red and is involved in the transport of oxygen.
B12 Deficiency Symptoms
Injections are often prescribed by doctors for patients who are experiencing a deficiency. The symptoms can include fatigue, digestive issues, weakness, numbness or tingling in the fingers, cognitive and emotional impairment, and shortness of breath.
Sometimes, a person can be deficient in vitamin B12 and not exhibit any symptoms at all. However, if the deficiency is severe, it can result in joint pain, depression, and even a reduction in your senses of taste and smell.
How Vitamin B12 Injections Aid in Weight Loss
B12 injections can help with many functions of the body related to weight loss and metabolism. It assists in digestion, boosting the body’s efficiency in breaking down the food you eat and converting it into energy. Additionally, B12 assists in cell respiration, which is the metabolic process that takes place inside a cell to convert biochemical energy from nutrients into chemical energy that the cell uses.
B12 can help restore energy levels in people who are feeling a lack of motivation or experiencing lethargy. It can boost concentration, improve your mood, and keep your metabolism moving efficiently.
What Is Metabolism?
Metabolism, sometimes referred to as metabolic rate, is essentially a series of chemical reactions that occur in your body that create and break down energy necessary for life. Put simply, it’s the rate at which your body burns calories.
Your metabolism isn’t just how quickly your body breaks down a meal and leaves you feeling hungry again. It includes all the metabolic processes that occur in every cell in your body. The better it is at turning the food you eat into energy (instead of fat) the more likely you are to lose weight.
How Does the Body Burn Calories?
Our bodies burn calories in many ways, including through exercise, everyday activities, and most importantly, through the energy required to keep the body functioning while at rest (heart beating, breathing, cellular respiration, etc.).
Metabolism’s Role in Weight Loss
Your metabolism can increase or decrease based on many things, but most importantly it’s based on the food that you eat and the lifestyle that you live. A sedentary lifestyle can signal your body to slow down its metabolism because it needs less energy to perform everyday tasks or exercise. This can lead to a decrease in overall energy levels as your weight increases, which in turn leads to a further decrease in energy levels and, often, a further increase in body weight.
When you engage in regular exercise, your body knows it needs to raise its metabolic rate to meet the increased energy needs. This is one of the areas where vitamin B12 injections can be beneficial. Not only does it aid in your body’s ability to metabolize food efficiently, but B12 can also help you maintain adequate energy levels necessary for exercise.
How Does Exercise Help You Lose Weight?
Losing weight naturally involves burning more calories than you take in. This results in what is known as a “caloric deficit” and, in theory, this will help you lose weight as your body is forced to turn fat into energy to make up for it. This is where vitamin B12 comes into play.
The faster your metabolism is, the more fat your body will be able to turn into energy. It can be extremely difficult (and often unhealthy) to seriously limit your caloric intake in an effort to create a larger “caloric deficit” necessary for weight loss. Instead, receiving vitamin B12 can ensure your metabolism is capable of burning as much fat as possible while maintaining a diet that meets your body’s needs to maintain proper functioning.
What Is the Best Exercise for Weight Loss?
The “best” exercise for weight loss will depend largely on your physical condition. People who have little or no history of exercise and a significant amount of excess weight should begin by walking. As you lose weight and raise your cardiovascular capacity, you can begin jogging or doing other more intense exercises.
Weight training is also considered an essential part of the weight loss journey in anyone physically capable of doing so. Weight training burns glucose, and vitamin B12 plays an essential role in your body’s ability to turn the food you eat into glucose. As such, adequate levels of B12 are essential in reaping the benefits of both weight training and cardiovascular exercise.
Do Vitamin B12 Injections Have Mental Health Benefits?
B12 plays a role in regulating depression and anxiety as well as aiding in memory retention.
While B12 is not a “cure” for depression, it does play a role in producing important neurotransmitters, including serotonin, that help control your mood and other mental functions. Low levels of serotonin have long been linked with depression. If you’re experiencing a deficiency in B12, even a relatively mild one, it could be having a negative effect on your mood.
Another negative mental side effect of being B12 deficient is anxiety. Anxiety has been linked to B12 deficiencies due to the effect B12 has on red blood cells and the nervous system. When your red blood cells cannot carry oxygen as efficiently as they need to, the effects on the brain can be myriad, though anxiety is a relatively common symptom. Taking vitamin B12 injections may improve symptoms of anxiety and help you feel more relaxed and less stressed out.
Aside from B12’s ability to help regulate your mood, it also has a role in proper memory and cognitive functioning. People with chronically low levels of B12 may be at higher risk for Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. To help avoid these serious degenerative conditions, it’s important to get enough B12 throughout your life.
Where Does Natural B12 Come From?
B12 is found in foods that come from animals, including meat, eggs, and dairy. Often, vegetarians and vegans are found to be deficient in B12 since these diets do not include animal products. For individuals who eat fewer animal products than average, some plant-based foods can be found that have been fortified with B12.
Sometimes, the body has difficulty obtaining enough B12 from food or over-the-counter supplements regardless of how much you’re ingesting. As a result, many doctors and other health experts recommend vitamin B12 injections in people who may be experiencing a deficiency. Injections can get more B12 into the body more quickly than changing your diet or taking oral supplements can.
Where Can You Get the Most B12 in Food?
High amounts of B12 can be found in organ meats, such as livers and kidneys. It can also be found in seafood, including clams, sardines, salmon, and tuna. Beef is one of the highest sources of B12 you can find and should be grilled or roasted as opposed to fried. Frying, studies have shown, can reduce some of the food’s nutritional value, including the amount of B12 it contains.
As mentioned, fortified foods can be an option for people whose dietary restrictions or lifestyle choices preclude eating foods naturally high in B12. Cereals, some non-dairy milk substitutes, and nutritional yeast are commonly found fortified with vitamin B12.
When Should You Get Vitamin B12 Shots?
Since the vitamin B12 is coming in the form of an injection, you need to have it prescribed by a medical professional. The frequency with which you should be getting the shots will depend on the nature of your deficiency and your doctor’s recommendation.
In the beginning, vitamin B12 injections can be administered as often as once or twice a week. Once the symptoms of B12 deficiency have subsided, the frequency with which you’ll be taking injections can be reduced to as little as once a month. Your doctor will assess you over the course of your treatment to determine when, and how much, B12 you will need in the future.
Are Vitamin B12 Injections Safe?
Generally, vitamin B12 injections are considered to be very safe. The vitamin is essential to a body that functions healthily. It’s very important that you work with a medical professional if you plan to supplement vitamin B12 in your diet. They will be able to prescribe the proper amounts and frequency with which you should be receiving your injections to promote optimal health.
Get the Vitality You Deserve
Vitamin B12 plays an essential role in numerous bodily functions, including aiding in an efficient metabolism, the creation of red blood cells, all of your cells’ ability to produce energy, and maintaining proper mental functioning. A deficiency in B12 can lead to numerous adverse health effects, many of which can be reversed by taking vitamin B12 injections.
If you’d like to lose weight but just don’t have the energy or motivation, or if you think you may be suffering from a vitamin B12 deficiency, contact Nubo Spa in Berkely, CA today to learn more about how we can help. A medical professional is available to answer any of your questions or to schedule an appointment.