October 17, 2018

B vitamins are pretty crucial to our daily health, as they provide our bodies with energy, help with stress management and support cognitive function. The specific focus here is Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin) as a naturally occurring nutrient in SP2 Life Spirulina. B12 is necessary for optimal nervous system function, as it plays a role in the formation healthy nerve cells. B12 is commonly found in animal proteins but that doesn’t mean you can’t get it from plants!

 

Each packet of SP2 contains 10.7 mcg of B12, which is 53.3 mcg/100g (see chart below for comparison). The vitamin is naturally abundant in spirulina as well as bio-available for our bodies to use. This means that B12 is digested and absorbed the same way as any protein source; HCL in the stomach removes B12 from amino acids, making it available for use by the various body systems as described above. The only other way to get B12 is via supplements, which isn't an issue b/c the B12 is not complexed to a protein. But why take the fun out of eating nutrient dense food and adding SP2 to get your daily dose of B12, right?!

Good Sources of Vitamin B12

Food

µg vitamin B12/100g

Panfried beef liver

83.1

Simmered turkey giblets

33.2

Braunschweiger pork liver sausage

20.1

Raw pacific oysters

16.0

Cooked Alaska king crab

11.5

Raw clams

11.3

Swiss cheese

3.34

Beef (uncooked sirloin)

1.15

Egg (raw, whole chicken's egg)

0.89

Whole cow's milk

0.45

Raw chicken breast

0.20

 

1. Functions

  • Vitamin B12 functions in two coenzyme forms: adenosyl-cobalamin (with methylcalonyl-CoA mutase and leucine mutase) and methylcobalamin (with methionine synthetase).
  • In these reactions, these forms of the vitamin play important roles in the metabolism of propionate, amino acids, and single carbons. These steps are essential for normal metabolism of all cells, especially for those of the GI tract, bone marrow, and nervous tissue. 

 

2. Deficiency

  • Megaloblastic macrocytic anemia
  • Manifestations of deficiency occur in stages:
    • Serum vitamin B12 concentrations diminish
    • Cell concentrations of the vitamin diminish
    • DNA synthesis decreases and serum homocysteine and methylmalonic acid concentrations increase
    • Morphological and functional changes occur in blood cells and in precursor blood cells in bone marrow resulting in a macrocytic megaloblastic (large immature cell) anemia
  • Deficiency signs and symptoms
    • Skin pallor, fatigue, shortness of breath, palpitations, insomnia, tingling and numbness, in extremities, abnormal gait, loss of concentration, memory loss, disorientation, swelling of myelinated fibers, and possibly dementia.
  • The most common cause of deficiency is malabsorption of the vitamin because of inadequate production and secretion of intrinsic factor.
    • Common disorder in elderly adults, largely due to atrophic gastritis and food cobalamin malabsorption.

 

3. Toxicity

  • No clear toxicity from massive doses has ever been recorded, neither any benefit been noted from an excessive intake of the vitamin by people with adequate vitamin status.


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