vitamin b-12 in the vegan diet

Since becoming a vegan, I hadn't paid as much attention to the need for Vitamin B-12 from an external source as I should have. I'm on it now!!! Vitamin B-12 can only be manufactured by fungi and bacteria. Soil micro-organisms used to produce this nutrient, and transfer it into our food more when we were a hunter-gatherer society. However, the natural micro-biome has been largely destroyed due to modern over-fertilization and pesticide use. Adding in the our society's obsession of hyper-clean produce in stores and even farmer's markets, we have lost this natural source of Vitamin B-12 in the plant kingdom.Vitamin B-12, can be found in animal based products like meat, eggs, fish, dairy. The bacteria from the soil is able to be stored in the animals tissues, and transferred to humans when they eat them. Because of the lack of animal products in their diet, vegans are highly susceptible to Vitamin B-12 deficiency. Adults older than 50 are also at risk, as nutrition and digestive function often begins to deteriorate as people age. Mushrooms, as they are fungi, produce and contain Vitamin B-12, as do fermented foods (bacteria) like tempeh and miso. Nutritional yeast is a good source as well. Nutritional yeast can provide one of the best vegan sources of Vitamin B-12, supplying 150% of daily needs in 3 tbsp (this is from the brand KAL).Why do you need Vitamin B-12? Vitamin B-12 is essential for the formation of hemoglobin, the protein responsible for red blood cells to carry oxygen. Without enough Vitamin B-12, hemoglobin cannot form, and often leads to anemia. The presentation of anemia is exhaustion. Your body isn't getting enough oxygen to supply vital muscles and organs, and therefore cannot perform basic metabolic activities. B-12 helps in cardiovascular support and DNA production, and a deficiency can lead to cardiovascular disease . Without this vitamin, you can have neurologic issues as well. If the brain isn't supplied with enough oxygen, its function is greatly diminished. Nerve cells need the supply of this vitamin as well, and without it, breakdown of nervous tissue begins to occur. Side affects can include fogginess, neurological pain, and numbness in hands and feet. Osteoporosis, or the breakdown of bone health, is also more common if this nutrient goes missing. For more info on Vitamin B-12 click here.It is HIGHLY recommended that if you lead a vegan life you should take a Vitamin B-12 supplement. How much do you need? There are various levels mentioned. Many multivitamins state the daily percentage they provide. This can be misleading. These numbers assume the body assimilates all that is taken in, which is not usually the case. If you are vegan, it is often recommended that you take a Vitamin B-complex or a Vitamin B-12 supplement. It is recommend that you obtain 2,500 mcg/week of Vitamin B-12 specifically. To take a sublingual (under the tongue), a daily tablet/capsule, or a once a week dose, is your choice. For an excellent video on Vitamin B-12 deficiency, check out Dr. Gregor's video on www.nutritionfacts.orgIf you're looking for a recipe that uses nutritional yeast, try my tofu ricotta, that you can find in my Vegan Lasagna! Perfect to use on noodles or top on zucchini or eggplant and bake it up!Remember-when someone tells you that a vegan diet can't provide all of the nutrition that you need, agree with them. It's true-we lack Vitamin B-12. However, I'd also add, a plant-based diet also doesn't supply an increased risk of diabetes, heart disease, & cholesterol!Happy eating!-Jessica of

Related Blog Posts

your sugar detox guide

are you vitamin d deficient?

juice cleanse success plan

here’s what happens to your body on a juice cleanse

top 5 benefits of a detox diet to reset yourself

war on waste: are fresh veggies healthier than frozen?

got milk? the dairy industry’s mass deception

what happens to your body when you go vegan?

what difference can one person make by going vegan?

how easily can the pope go vegan?

supercharge your sex life

is it possible to prevent and reverse disease?

5 ways plants power us in 2019

detox your body

lose weight simply: eat smart

4 reasons plant-based eating helps with weight loss

eating healthy doesn’t have to be scary - 5 simple tips

the most unusual facts about berries

can you get enough protein from plants?

5 foods you should never eat

spotlight on: activated charcoal

5 superfoods for women's health

ancient remedies we use today

5 plant-based foods that help you lose weight

five magnesium-rich foods for stress relief

why detox?

10 ways to sneak in more veggies

high fiber foods you can snack on

myth vs fact: 5 things you didn't know about vitamin c

plant-based aphrodisiacs that work

5 heart-healthy foods

8 underrated veggies & why you should be eating them

probiotics - your best friend around the holidays

5 winter superfoods for more energy

5 easy ways to detox after overindulging

the key benefits of juicing

should you take supplements?

veggie anatomy 101: carrots

is plant-based good for kids?

are plant milks good for you?

good carbs vs. bad carbs

food facts: tomatoes

frozen vs. fresh: know your veggies

10 seasonal superfoods

5 summer foods to keep you hydrated

how much water should you really drink?

plant foods that boost your energy

men's health month: five plant-based benefits for men

5 protein-packed veggies

five concerns about plant-based calories

is soy good or bad for men?

sodium's effects on health and weight

5 winter squashes you need for better health right now

halloween inspired veggies to help you live longer

fat vs. sugar: the battle rages on

the soybean saga: myths and facts

5 reasons to fall in love with kale all over again

top reasons to have an apple a day

food facts: watermelon

plant based protein to keep you satisfied

rockin the rhubarb

iodine on a vegan diet

the truth behind antioxidants and food

eat your greens

do you get enough energy from your food?

healthy snacking tips for you & your kiddos

is it a flower or a vegetable: discover the artichoke

foods that fool you

root down with your root veggies

6 foods that help reduce inflammation

cacao for your loved ones


pulses-the superfood that always has bean

cooking without oil

pumpkin seeds and their health benefits

turmeric and it's powerful benefits

growing edamame & health benefits of soy

pumped for peppers!

what's sugar doing to us?

benefits of basil

benefits of raw foods

check out cherries!

nih guide: how to lower blood pressure with a dash eating plan

eat more dark chocolate and lower your blood pressure!

beans v. beef: an infographic

boost your healthy gut bacteria with plant-based foods

stop the madness! treat heart disease with a healthy diet -- not drugs!

cabbage-it's history, use, and nutritional benefit

a plant-based diet is key to controlling diabetes

want to lower your cholesterol? a pill is not a magic bullet!

are you at risk for heart disease?

can eating more veggies save your eyesight?

don't have breakfast without one of these three!