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Does Vitamin B12 Deficiency Cause Memory Loss

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Symptoms Of A Vitamin B12 Deficiency: Nerve Damage And Memory Disorders

Does Vitamin B12 Deficiency Cause Hair Loss???

Since vitamin B12 is stored in the liver for a long period, a deficiency in this vitamin develops gradually, over a longer amount of time. The symptoms of deficiency are varied, due to the different functions of the vitamin, and can be dismissed for a long time as a sign of aging. A vitamin B12 deficiency is frequently only identified when the most typical symptom of a vitamin B12 deficiency hyperchromic anemia develops. Hyperchromic anemia is a special form of anemia which develops due to the insufficient proliferation of red blood cells. However, when it becomes noticeable, it is often too late for early diagnosis and treatment. This is because, the neurological damage triggered by the vitamin B12 deficiency may develop much earlier without being noticed and, if it remains untreated for too long, it may be irreversible. The problem: Associating the nonspecific neurological symptoms such as gait unsteadiness, confusion and memory disorders with a possible vitamin B12 deficiency still happens far too rarely and as a result, they remain untreated for a long time. A vitamin B12 deficiency is closely linked to the risk of developing dementia which associates a low vitamin B12 level with memory disorders and early-stage Alzheimers dementia. This is shown in a recent study that establishes a connection between a vitamin B12 level and mild cognitive impairment.

Vitamin B12 Deficiency Can Be Sneaky Harmful

What harm can having too little of vitamin B12 do? Consider this: Over the course of two months, a 62-year-old man developed numbness and a “pins and needles” sensation in his hands, had trouble walking, experienced severe joint pain, began turning yellow, and became progressively short of breath. The cause was lack of vitamin B12 in his bloodstream, according to a case report from Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital published in The New England Journal of Medicine. It could have been worsea severe vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to deep depression, paranoia and delusions, memory loss, incontinence, loss of taste and smell, and more.

These Symptoms Indicate A Deficiency Of Vitamin B12

The main symptoms are weakness, fatigue, weakness of the body, loss of appetite, irritability, tingling, stiffness, hair loss, mouth ulcers, constipation, memory loss, excessive stress, headache, shortness of breath, yellowing of the skin, eyesight. . If this happens to you, consult an expert immediately.

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Reduces Blood Flow To The Brain

As if homocysteine didnt cause enough damage to your brain, it also targets your vascular health. Elevated levels of homocysteine contribute to arterial thickening, stiffness, and the development of atherosclerosis. All of these effects reduce blood flow to the brain and contribute to stroke risk, which compounds damage to the brain.

How Much To Get

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The answer depends on things including your age, your eating habits and medical conditions, and what medications you take.

The average recommended amounts, measured in micrograms , vary by age:

  • Infants up to age 6 months: 0.4 mcg
  • Babies age 7-12 months: 0.5 mcg
  • Children age 1-3 years: 0.9 mcg
  • Kids age 4-8 years: 1.2 mcg
  • Children age 9-13 years: 1.8 mcg
  • Teens age 14-18: 2.4 mcg
  • Adults: 2.4 mcg

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Signs And Symptoms Of Vitamin B12 Deficiency

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Vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin, is an important water-soluble vitamin .

It plays an essential role in the production of your red blood cells and DNA, as well as the proper functioning of your nervous system.

Vitamin B12 is naturally found in animal foods, including meats, fish, poultry, eggs and dairy. However, it can also be found in products fortified with B12, such as some varieties of bread and plant-based milk.

Unfortunately, B12 deficiency is common, especially in the elderly. Youre at risk of deficiency if you dont get enough from your diet or arent able to absorb enough from the food you eat.

  • Those whove had surgery that removes the part of the bowel that absorbs B12
  • People on the drug metformin for diabetes
  • People following a strict vegan diet
  • Those taking long-term antacid drugs for heartburn

Unfortunately, symptoms of a vitamin B12 deficiency can take years to show up, and diagnosing it can be complex. A B12 deficiency can sometimes be mistaken for a folate deficiency.

Low levels of B12 cause your folate levels to drop. However, if you have a B12 deficiency, correcting low folate levels may simply mask the deficiency and fail to fix the underlying problem (

Here are 9 signs and symptoms of a true vitamin B12 deficiency.

Assessment Of Memory Functions

Learning and memory performances of all MCI patients were tested with the use of the German version of the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test . Patients were asked to learn a list of 15 words within 5 immediate recall trials followed by a 30-min delayed recall and delayed recognition test. Learning ability was defined as the sum of words learned in all 5 trials delayed recall represented the total number of remembered words after 30 min . For delayed recognition, MCI patients were asked to recognize the 15 original words presented within 35 distractor words subsequent to the delayed recall tests . All testing was conducted by trained staff members according to standard procedures.

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Aging Or B12 Vitamin Deficiency

Aging or B12 Deficiency is a topic that has become a serious concern especially for those over age 60. Sally M. Pacholok R. N. authored of a book about this common B12 Vitamin deficiency. She says that in her work as a nurse she saw many patients with missed diagnoses of this particular vitamin deficiency – including some who had been diagnosed with age related dementia and others who had to be rushed to the emergency room for care.

She finally teamed up with Jerffrey J. Stuart, D. O. to write a book on the topic, Could It Be B12? An Epidemic of Misdiagnoses

Symptoms that could be the result of either Aging or B12 Deficiency

  • Mental confusion, memory loss, irritability, apathy, sleepiness, personality changes, depression, hallucinations,violent behavior. Not all of these are seen in each case but any of them could be symptoms.
  • Abnormal sensations eg, pain, tingling, numbness, diminished sense of touch or temperature, clumsiness, tremor, weakness, incontinence, vision changes, damage to the optic nerve
  • TIAs , stroke, coronary artery disease, congestive heart failure, palpitations, bloodclots, low blood pressure when standing up – sometimes causes falls or fainting.
  • chronic fatigue, loss of appetite, gastrointestinal problems, osteoporosis, tinnitus, prematurely grey hair

Symptoms that could be the result of Aging or B12 deficiency

How To Ensure You Get The Right Vitamins And Minerals In The Right Amounts

Cancer, Depression and Memory Loss – Vitamin B 12 Deficiency

Vitamins and minerals are as essential for living as air and water. Not only do they keep your body healthy and functional, they protect you from a variety of diseases.

Vitamins and minerals get thrown together, but they are quite different. Vitamins are organic substances produced by plants or animals. They often are called “essential” because they are not synthesized in the body and therefore must come from food.

Minerals are inorganic elements that originate from rocks, soil, or water. However, you can absorb them indirectly from the environment or an animal that has eaten a particular plant.

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What If The Person Wont Go For Investigations And Tests

The person may be feeling frightened of getting a diagnosis and may think that they will lose their independence or have to go into care. In some cases, they may not understand that there are concerns about their memory or behaviour and deny they have a problem.

It is important to reassure the person that their symptoms may be due to another potentially treatable condition. This could mean they become more willing to visit the GP. If the person simply refuses to go to the GP, you can contact the surgery to explain the situation, either by phone, letter or email. The GP may be able to provide a home visit to speak to the person about their symptoms.

The GP may not be prepared to discuss confidential information with you, but they should welcome relevant information about the persons current health and concerns.

For more advice on encouraging someone who is reluctant to visit their GP, please watch our video, here.

Symptoms Of Vitamin B12 Deficiency:

A. The symptoms you describe are classic for vitamin B12 deficiency, so it is possible that was affecting your friend. Other complications arising from vitamin B12 deficiency include:

  • Depression, paranoia, personality changes and memory problems
  • Digestive upset including loss of appetite, weight loss and constipation
  • Anemia, pale skin, fatigue and weakness
  • Nerve problems including dizziness, numbness and tingling of feet or hands and movement disorders
  • Sore tongue or mouth
  • Heart palpitations and shortness of breath

People can experience just one or two symptoms or a range of problems when they have vitamin B12 deficiency.

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Vitamin D Deficiency And Memory Decline

Receptors for vitamin D are found throughout the brain andplay a critical role in making memories. A team of researchers at TuftsUniversity in Boston analyzed vitamin D blood levels in over 1,000 people overthe age of 65 to determine its relationship to cognitive function. Out of the1,000 study participants, 65% had insufficient or deficient levels of thesunshine vitamin. These people performedworse on tests of executive function , attention, and processing speed compared with those whohad optimal levels of vitamin D.

Other research appearing in a 2015 issue of JAMA Neurology showed that older adults with low levels of the sunshine vitamin experienced memory loss faster than those with healthy levels. The study included seniors with dementia, with mild cognitive impairment , and with normal cognitive function. The MCI group had lower levels of vitamin D than the cognitively healthy people, and those with dementia had even lower levels than the MCI group. The older adults with insufficient or deficient levels of vitamin D experienced accelerated rates of decline in terms of executive function and episodic memory compared with those who had normal levels.

How Does Vitamin D Deficiency Affect Your Memory And Mood

Overview of Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Are you getting enough vitamin D? If youre like mostpeople, you probably arent. Vitamin D deficiencies are becoming more common,affecting about half of the people on planet Earth. According to one study, 70%of adults and 67% of kids ages 1-11 have insufficient levels of vitamin D. Itsno wonder when you consider the increasing amount of time we spend indoors andall that sunscreen we slather on our bodies when were outside.

Vitamin D deficiency, or even just less-than-optimal levels of the sunshine vitamin, can spell trouble for your memory and moods. Low levels of vitamin D have been associated with depression, Alzheimers disease and other dementias, and cognitive decline, as well as psychosis, autism, heart disease, and about 200 other conditions.

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Pale Or Jaundiced Skin

People with a B12 deficiency often look pale or have a slight yellow tinge to the skin and whites of the eyes, a condition known as jaundice.

This happens when a lack of B12 causes problems with your bodys red blood cell production .

Vitamin B12 plays an essential role in the production of the DNA needed to make red blood cells. Without it, the instructions for building the cells are incomplete, and cells are unable to divide .

This causes a type of anemia called megaloblastic anemia, in which the red blood cells produced in your bone marrow are large and fragile.

These red blood cells are too large to pass out of your bone marrow and into your circulation. Therefore, you dont have as many red blood cells circulating around your body, and your skin can appear pale in color.

The fragility of these cells also means that many of them break down, causing an excess of bilirubin.

Bilirubin is a slightly red or brown-colored substance, which is produced by the liver when it breaks down old blood cells.

Large amounts of bilirubin are what give your skin and eyes a yellow tinge (

Summary: If you have a B12 deficiency, your skin may appear pale or jaundiced.

Dr Dawn Harper On Signs Of Vitamin B12 And Vitamin D Deficiency

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A deficiency in B12 can be slow to develop, showing subtle symptoms which appear gradually and intensify over time. The deficiency will be signalled through a host of complications that can manifest in as little as two months. One sign when you brush your teeth, however, could be warning that youve had low levels of B12 for a long time.

Researchers measured B12 levels, as well as pocket depth in the gum and clinical attachment loss, to reflect periodontal status.

According to the data, there was an association between vitamin B12 and risk ratios of tooth loss linked to periodontitis overtime.

Researchers revealed that individuals with chronically low levels of B12 were also at greater risk of severe periodontitis symptoms.

These include bright red, purplish gums, spitting out blood when brushing or flossing your teeth, bad breath, and pus between the teeth.

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Study Shows Vitamin B12 And Folate Deficiencies Are Common In Seniors

Scientists at Trinity College Dublin, in Ireland, conducted the study, called the Irish Longitudinal Study on Aging . In the study, 5,290 adults aged 50 and older submitted their medical records for research. Researchers then observed medical records for evidence of deficiencies in vitamin B12 and folate. The study, published in the British Journal of Nutrition, was the largest study on the status of B vitamins in seniors.

Once the data from the study was evaluated, the researchers discovered that 1 in 8 seniors was deficient or low in B-12 and 1 in 7 seniors had low folate levels or was considered folate deficient.

There are striking differences in the prevalence of deficiency across different lifestyle factors such as obesity and smoking both of which are modifiable risk factors, said Dr. Eamon Laird, the lead study author.

Distinguishing Between Types Of Dementia

Diagnosing and Treating Vitamin B12 Deficiency

For physicians and families intent on pinning down a diagnosis, one major complicating factor is the existence of so many kinds of dementia. More than 50 conditions can mimic or cause dementia.

Alzheimers disease is by far the most common intractable condition. But other causes of irreversible dementia include blood vessel diseasevascular dementia), other degenerative disorders , slow-growing brain tumors, or infections of the central nervous system .

In some types of dementia, treatment will improve mental functioning, and in a small percentage, the dementia is completely reversible if treatment begins before permanent brain damage occurs. Thats why it is important to report to a doctor any signs of dementia as early as possible.

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Vitamin Deficiency And Its Impact On Brain Health

A study from the University of Wisconsin found 40% of geriatric memory patients were deficient in at least one vitamin linked to brain health. Vitamins tested in this study included B1, B6, B12, and D, all of which play an important role in brain health. Dr. Robert Przybelski joins the podcast to discuss his study, the influence of vitamin deficiency on brain health, and the potential consequences of vitamin deficiency when treating a patient for a memory condition. Guest: Robert Przybelski, MD, associate professor, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health

Episode Topics:

  • Why is it important to look for vitamin deficiencies during a memory evaluation? 1:19

  • What were your research findings? 2:03

  • What do you focus on during a memory evaluation? 5:13

  • Is there a difference between normal vitamin levels and optimal levels? 6:40

  • What supplements do you take? 7:42

  • What diet do you think promotes brain health? 8:06

  • Why does your research look at general patients rather than participants? 8:41

Subscribe to this podcast through Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Podbean, or Stitcher, or wherever you get your podcasts.

How Is Vitamin B12 Deficiency Anemia Diagnosed

Your doctor will examine you and ask questions about your past health and how you are feeling now. You will also have blood tests to check the number of red blood cells and to see if your body has enough vitamin B12.

The level of folic acid, another B vitamin, will be checked too. Some people whose vitamin B12 levels are too low also have low levels of folic acid. The two problems can cause similar symptoms. But they are treated differently.

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/8vitamin B12 Deficiency Similar To Dementia

Vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin, is a water-soluble vitamin required for the formation of the blood and the functioning of the nerve system. The problem with this vitamin is that our body cannot produce it, so it has to depend on food sources and supplements for it. The deficiency of the B12 vitamin is common among vegetarians and vegans as this mineral is not found in plant-based food products. Studies suggest that up to 80- 90 per cent of vegans and vegetarians are vitamin B12 deficient. This disorder impacts the human body in several ways. Right from causing vitamin deficiency anaemia to underpins the central nervous system. Many times symptoms of Vitamin B12 deficiency is confused with dementia due to overlapping signs. This leads to wrong or delayed treatment. Here are four signs of dementia similar to that of B12 deficiency.

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