Have you ever wondered why energy drinks often have vitamin B12 as one of their ingredients? It's simple. We've known for a long time that vitamin B12 boosts your metabolism. What medical science has refused to acknowledge, though, is the vitamin's role in metabolic disorders, such as type-2 diabetes.
In fact, if you go to the Mayo Clinic's web page on type-2 diabetes, you won't see anything listed about vitamin B12. This could be due to a lack of research, though many alternative doctors will prescribe it for their patients with diabetes. Fortunately, a new study in infants is beginning to break down the scientific barrier for this essential nutrient's role in metabolic disorders.
While this study is in infants, the application is just as valid for adults. In this study, researchers found that when a mother has a B12 deficiency, it significantly increases the baby's risk of having a metabolic disorder, such as diabetes. It turns out, the deficiency causes the baby's body to produce abnormal levels of leptin. This is the hormone that tells you when you're full after eating. When you eat, the levels of leptin in your body increase.
However, a B12 deficiency can cause the body to keep these leptin levels high. When this happens, your body can develop a leptin resistance. When this happens, your body doesn't tell you it's full. So you keep eating. The obvious result is weight gain. But it also causes an increased risk of insulin resistance and then diabetes.
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The researchers in this study found that the moms who had a vitamin B12 deficiency passed the problem on to their infants. This is a major problem and could explain why childhood obesity rates are skyrocketing.
There are a lot of people on the Internet saying that a vitamin B12 deficiency leads to weight loss. However, this study found that most of the women who were deficient in B12 had a higher Body Mass Index (BMI) score. In other words, they were overweight. And this isn't the only study to find this. Another study from 2013 found that "Low vitamin B12 level was associated with obesity and overweight." This study didn't find any correlation with diabetes. But this new study suggests there might be a connection.
Because B12 increases your metabolism, it makes sense that a deficiency will lead to weight gain. It also makes sense that this would lead to diabetes. We'll need more research to make that connection. But for now, it makes sense for everyone - children and adults - to make sure they have adequate vitamin B12 levels.
The best way to take B12 is through an injection. But that requires you to find a doctor who is willing to give you the shots. The next best way to take vitamin B12 is with sublingual tablets. These are easy to take and are fairly inexpensive. You can find sublingual B12 by following this link. Vitamin B12 is destroyed easily in the gut, so taking pills you swallow is the least effective way to take it. And poor digestion can impact your ability to absorb it as well.
Your insider for better health,
Steve Kroening, ND.