Symptoms of B-12 Deficiency and How to Avoid It

Symptoms of B-12 Deficiency and How to Avoid It

A B-12 deficiency can be permanently damaging. The good news is that it isn’t that hard to avoid if you pay attention.

Tip: Just because your B-12 lab results start out good, doesn’t mean that they’ll stay good. It can take as long as a year of low intake to show up in your lab results. Get your labs done as recommended, at least annually, and take your B-12 to prevent permanent nerve damage.

Always consult your doctor if you think you have a B-12 deficiency or are at a higher risk for deficiency. And remember, there’s an easy fix: taking Vitamin B-12 everyday can help safeguard against risk and help prevent negative effects of a deficiency. OPURITY® Vitamins has always used methylcobalamin which has advantages vs other options.

For most bariatric patients, if your labs are good, OPURITY® Bariatric Multis provide excellent levels of B-12. No need to add more B-12 to your diet unless advised by medical professional (e.g. if your lab results are low).

So how do you know if you are at a higher risk of a B-12 deficiency?

Who is at increased risk:

  • Older individuals 
  • Some autoimmune disorders 
  • Crohn’s disease 
  • Gastric bypass or gastric sleeve 
  • Type 1 Diabetes 
  • Strict vegans 
  • Poor eating habits
  • Use of PPI’s such as Nexium, Prilosec, Prevacid 

Common Symptoms of Vitamin B-12 Deficiency

There are three categories of symptoms (and problems) with B-12 deficiency: Neurological (nerve-related), digestive tract, blood-related. Most common, and perhaps most worrisome, are the nerve problems.

Neurological complications are present in 75-90 percent of individuals with clinically observable B-12 deficiency.

Neurological effects:

Vitamin B12 deficiency may lead to nerve damage which can sometimes be irreversible.


  • tingling and numbness in your hands and feet 
  • muscle weakness 
  • loss of reflexes 
  • unsteadiness, loss of balance, trouble walking 

Severe cases can have:

  • confusion 
  • dementia 
  • depression 
  • memory loss 

Digestive tract effects:

  • nausea (feeling sick to your stomach) 
  • vomiting, 
  • heartburn, 
  • abdominal bloating and gas, 
  • constipation or diarrhea, 
  • loss of appetite, and 
  • weight loss. 
  • an enlarged liver 

Blood-related effects:

Finally, B-12 deficiency can cause hematological (blood-related) problems:

  • weakness 
  • fatigue 
  • shortness of breath 
  • palpitations (feeling that the heart is beating either too hard or too fast, or skipping a beat, or fluttering

That’s a long list of symptoms and many of them can be caused by other deficiencies and diseases, so you cannot assume that a B-12 deficiency is the cause. Always consult your doctor.

The good news with Vitamin B-12 is that no negative effects have been linked to taking higher doses of B-12. So OPURITY Vitamin B-12 Plus Folic Acid gives you a safe, but high-level dose, and all varieties of OPURITY® Bariatric Multis are excellent sources of B-12 as well.

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