Vitamin B12 is needed by the body in order to produce red blood cells. Our red blood cells are responsible for carrying oxygen throughout the body. When your body does not have enough of this vitamin B12, it could lead to anemia. When you have anemia, it means that your body does not have enough red blood cells to perform its functions.
As a result of this deficiency, you body will feel tired and weak all the time.
A deficiency in Vitamin B12 can also lead to nerve damage, which will, in time, affect your memory as well as will inhibit your thinking abilities.
Causes of Vitamin B12 Deficiency Anemia
Individuals can get Vitamin B12 from consuming eggs, meat, cheese and milk. The vitamin found in these foods is absorbed by the body’s digestive system, mainly the intestines and the stomach. Vitamin B12 deficiency anemia occurs when your body is unable to absorb the vitamin from the foods that you are eating.
It happens when;
- A person has pernicious anemia. Pernicious anemia destroys all body cells found in the stomach that aid in the absorption of vitamin B12 from food.
- An individual has undergone surgery to remove a part of their stomach, or more specifically the last part of the small intestine known as the ileum.
- An individual has problems with the way the body digests food e.g. celiac disease, Crohn’s disease or when the body has a parasite.
It can also occur when a person does not consume food that has enough B12, though it is very rare. For vegans and other adults that do not combine their diets, they may need to take a vitamin pill each day so as to ensure that they will get enough B12.
The amount of B12 needed by the body will depend on your age. For instance, children between the ages of one and three years require a daily amount of 0.9 micrograms daily, while pregnant women need 2.6 micrograms of B12 on a regular basis.