THE REAL SKINNY ON VITAMIN B12. WHAT IT CAN AND CANNOT DO FOR YOU
Written by , Article reviewed and edited by Dr. Fine M.D.
Published on 05 June 2020
of the scariest deficiencies known to doctor's is a B12 deficiency.
This is because it can lead to anemia and injury to the nervous system.
If not detected promptly, serious injury may occur with the patient
experiencing increasing imbalance and falling issues actions that can
be fatal for the elderly population. When red blood cells are not
produced efficiently (anemia) the results can be fatal. Therefore,
vitamin b12 is vital for life. Read on to learn what vitamin B12 really
is and how adequate intake of this vitamin is crucial for your health.
What is Vitamin B12?
B12 is a water-soluble vitamin and not a fat-soluble vitamin like
vitamin E. It is naturally found in some food items, is fortified in
others and also available as a vitamin supplement in pill form or even
prescribed as an injection. As with most vitamins, it can be found in
different forms but all forms contain the cobalt mineral. Cobalt on its
own can be found in the earth's crust and is considered a trace element
for humans. It forms the center of the B12 vitamin as well as other
co-enzymes known as cobalamins. Two forms of vitamin B12 are active in
human metabolism: methylcobalamin and 5-deoxyadenosylcobalamin.
What Does Vitamin B12 Do in the Body?
B12 is required for three major activities in the human body: red blood
cell formation, neurological function and DNA synthesis. Without enough
vitamin B12, the red blood cells do not divide normally and become too
large. Because of this, they may not be able to leave the bone marrow
where they are produced. This means oxygen is not being adequately
carried around the bloodstream.
the process of DNA synthesis, vitamin B12 supplies the methyl groups
for both the proteins and DNA itself. Around our nerves, we have a fatty
substance called myelin sheaths. They cover and protect the nerves of
the central and peripheral nervous system ensuring proper transmission
of impulses. Vitamin B12 maintains the structure and functioning of
these myelin sheaths. Specifically, B12 is a co-factor in the synthesis
of methionine, an amino acid that is required for methylation reactions,
including the synthesis of myelin. In addition, methionine is
synthesized from homocysteine, another amino acid that is associated
with neurodegenerative diseases when it is found in high levels,
damaging the brain and cognitive health. Vitamin B12 helps to synthesize
methionine, thus lowering levels of homocysteine in turn.
Sources of Vitamin B12
vitamin B12 is found in basically all animal products such as meat,
eggs and dairy products. It is usually not found in plant foods, but
recently, scientists have found it to be present in the edible aquatic
plant duckweed. Otherwise, it must be added to breakfast cereals or
plant milk. Nutritional yeast is also a great source for B12, adding a
cheesy flavor to vegetarian or vegan meals.
a dietary supplement, vitamin B12 is typically found in the form of
cyanocobalamin, a form that the body can easily convert to the active
forms, methylcobalamin and 5-deoxyadenosylcobalamin. Some supplement
brands may include methylcobalamin and other forms of B12 in them
including the cyano form. There does not appear to be a difference in
absorption or bioavailability between the various forms.
Vitamin B12 is also available in the form of tablets, lozenges and even sprays.
are available through a prescription when medically necessary and are
administered via intramuscular injection. Injectable B12 is used to
treat a deficiency caused by pernicious anemia and other conditions
cause vitamin B12 malabsorption and severe B12 deficiency. A nasal spray
is also available via prescription.
Vitamin B12 Deficiency
population most prone to vitamin B12 deficiency are older adults. They
may suffer from pernicious anemia (increased immature red blood cells),
have reduced stomach acidity or other intestinal disorders that reduce
the ability to absorb B12 from food. This may happen in younger adults
as well. In addition, vegans and vegetarians who do not supplement or
eat eggs/dairy may need to carefully monitor their B12 supplementation
or fortified food intake.
symptoms of deficiency include anemia, weakness, constipation, fatigue,
loss of appetite and weight loss. If the nerves are affected, patients
will experience numbness and tingling in the hands and feet. Other
symptoms include balance difficulties, depression, confusion, dementia,
memory loss and soreness of the mouth and tongue.
conclusion, vitamin B12 is a necessary vitamin, without which we would
suffer serious adverse effects and possibly death if not treated. Both
the circulatory and nervous systems of our bodies are critically
affected by a deficiency in B12. If you think you may be suffering from
such a deficiency, we recommended getting a blood test as soon as
possible to determine whether this is an issue for you. We can set you
up with a simple blood test and prescribe B12 injections if necessary.
It is a simple process to get blood drawn for testing and a simple
diagnosis once complete.
WHY IS IT SO HARD TO LOSE WEIGHT AND KEEP IT OFF?
Written by , Article reviewed and edited by Dr. Fine M.D.
Published on 01 June 2018
Most people in America today have been concerned about their weight at least once in their lives. Millions of men and women have turned to diet and exercise to lose weight, frequently with success. The biggest issue that folks have when trying to maintain a new goal weight is that the human physiology makes it difficult to maintain weight loss.
This is the reason why modern humans have such issues with Weight Cycling—also known as Yo-Yo Dieting. Through effort and conscientiousness, it's a challenge to lose weight, but not impossible. While most people can lose weight, the hardest part is maintaining a healthier weight after reaching a goal weight.
Metabolism Slows Down In Response to Weight Loss
At first, losing weight isn't that hard. Your body reacts to increased activity levels and dietary restriction by burning calories as a response. Over time, however, the body will recognize continued weight loss and register it as a potential threat. In response to that threat, the body slows down metabolism to maintain existing stores of body fat. This also means that if you return to your old habits, you will gain the weight back more quickly. Often, people will achieve their weight loss goals only to return to their former weight, even adding on a couple of extra pounds. How frustrating!
That's because the human body is obsessed with homeostasis. If you've been overweight for a long time, your body is fine-tuned to operate under those conditions. Losing weight causes a strain on that balance, and your body will react against it, attempting to gain the weight back and return to its prior state of (unhealthy) balance. Your body can eventually adapt to your new weight, but it puts up a fight which causes most diets to ultimately be unsuccessful.
Our bodies are designed to store fat and ward off starvation. For millions of years, human beings and their ancestors have dealt with food scarcity, and evolution has not prepared us for the life of nutritional excess that we have achieved in the 21st century. Our bodies are designed to operate under a feast or famine cycle. The human metabolism treats body fat as if it is highly precious because it once was. That's what makes dieting such a struggle—we're literally fighting millions of years of evolutionary programming.
Weight Loss Triggers Hormonal Changes
As you likely know, our Hormones are largely responsible for maintaining physiological balance. As metabolism slows down, it triggers a cascade of hormonal changes. It triggers changes in Digestive Hormones which encourage increased intake of calories. While Serotonin and other hormones play a role in digestion, the two biggest culprits are Leptin and Ghrelin. Leptin is responsible for triggering the feeling of satiation, while Ghrelin activates hunger response. If you've recently lost weight, your body will not produce as much Leptin, which leaves you susceptible to overeating.
Weight Loss also leads to increase production of Ghrelin, which causes you to get hungry more often, and to experience stronger feelings of hunger. There is even evidence that losing weight makes you respond to the sensations of eating more positively. Food just tends to taste better, which further encourages you to overeat and cancel out all that you've achieved with your diet.
Achieving Weight Loss Goals Often Leads to Lax Habits
By their nature, humans are goal-oriented, which is beneficial to weight loss. The problem is that, once we've achieved a goal, the inspiration often fades, which can have consequences for maintaining positive change. It's a lot of work to lose weight, and as we said, the human body doesn't like change. The combination of lack of motivation, slowed metabolism, and hormone imbalance is incredibly difficult to overcome, which has disappointed millions of men and women across the world.
Once you achieve your weight loss goals, your brain remembers your old habits and wants to return to the past, comfortable ways. Maintaining a new goal weight requires hard work and diligence. The National Weight Control Registry follows the lives of individuals that achieved and maintained significant weight loss for more than a year.
By studying the habits of successful dieters, we can help more people achieve their long-term goal of maintaining a healthy weight. Researchers discovered that keeping the weight off actually required more work than losing it in the first place!
What Steps Can I Take To Preserve My Weight Loss Results?
It's important to recognize that good habits and hard work don't end once you've achieved your goal weight. The fight never ends. Acknowledging that fact will arm you for the road ahead. It's essential to maintain an atmosphere of encouragement and support. Let your friends and family hold you accountable for your weight loss. Your loved ones want you to be healthy, and it doesn't take a lot of effort for them to show their support.
You can also look for outside clinical and social support. There are weight loss clinics nationwide that work with patients just like you, as well as nutritionists and dietitians. Consider joining a weight loss support group! Surrounding yourself with other people with the same goals works wonders for long-term success.
Understand that the diet doesn't end when you've lost the weight. Continue to make the concerted effort to live a healthy and conscientious life, and you'll find that keeping the weight off is easier than it seems. It's all about education, psychology, and perseverance!
DRINK RIGHT TO LIVE WELL
Written by , Article reviewed and edited by Dr. Fine M.D.
Published on 30 May 2018
When it comes to living well, everything that we put into our bodies affects our wellness. While most people pay attention to the food that they eat, they may be less conscientious about what they drink. Even if you're eating well, your beverage habits may be having an adverse effect on your diet, your teeth, your heart, and your health.
While alcohol is one of the biggest offenders when it comes to poor drinking choices, sodas, juices, energy drinks, and other beverages all have their downsides as well. If you're looking to improve your health or just preserve your wellness, it would be wise to think about your beverage choices.
Should I Drink Alcohol For My Health?
As we learn more about the effects of alcohol on the body, it becomes clear that there are both benefits and drawbacks to the regular consumption of alcohol. While those with addictive tendencies should forgo alcohol altogether, having a drink or two per day can provide some cardiovascular benefits, though the downsides of alcohol may somewhat outweigh them. If you enjoy the occasional pint or glass, there's little harm in continuing the tradition.
On the other hand, most, if not all of the benefits of alcohol can be sought after from other sources, so there's no reason to drink more alcohol to get more benefits or start drinking if you're not a regular drinker already.
Excess alcohol consumption does have a negative impact on Testosterone Levels. That's because alcohol encourages the conversion of Testosterone into Estrogen. This is one reason why alcoholics tend to be overweight and suffer from gynecomastia, known colloquially as man-boobs. Alcohol suppresses Testosterone and contributes to Low-T.
Are Fruit Juices Healthy?
One of the biggest misconceptions about a healthy diet is that fruit juices are good for you. While apple juice, orange juice, pomegranate juice, and other fruit beverages are better than drinking soda, you have to be careful. Many fruit juices contain more sugar than your average can of pop! Also, many fruit juices have loads of added sugar, such as cranberry juice. Without the added sugar in cranberry juice, most people wouldn't be able to stomach the sour flavor.
When it comes to fruit, eating fruit will always provide better health benefits than drinking fruit juice. A lot of the vitamins and most of the fiber in fruit come from the pulp, which is usually processed out of most juices. Fruit will also help fill your stomach, whereas fruit juices can still leave you hungry. There's nothing wrong with treating yourself to a glass of fruit juice occasionally, or even daily, but be aware that you're better off pairing a nice glass of water with a snack of fruit than relying on fruit juice in your diet.
Limit or Eliminate Sodas From Your Diet
Carbonated, sugary sodas contribute more to the obesity epidemic than almost any other single factor. Not so long ago, sodas were treated like a dessert or a special treat. Now they are a staple of tens of millions of people's lives across America. The average can of soda contains 150-200 caloriesYou'd have to run 13-17 minutes at 6 miles per hour to make up the cost of a single can of soda. That means if you drink four cans of soda per day, you would have to run for about an hour to make up for the calories that you consumed.
Furthermore, our bodies are designed to break down complex nutrients. Simple sugars and carbohydrates are very bad for your teeth because they eat away at enamel and lead to cavities, root canals, and other unfortunate dental mishaps. Even diet sodas can contribute to these risks because the acids in soda are also corrosive.
While Diet Sodas are much healthier for you than regular sodas, you're still better off drinking water. Diet Sodas contain sugar alternatives that can have adverse effects on your digestive tract. Artificial sweeteners make it harder to feel full, which can contribute to overeating. This is because the taste of sugar primes the brain to expect incoming calories. When the body doesn't receive calories from soda, the brain amps up feelings of hunger to compensate.
Do Sodas and Coffees Contribute to Dehydration?
Many people believe that drinking beverages high in caffeine can have a negative effect on hydration levels. While this has been widely accepted for decades, there is little truth in the belief. While caffeine does have some diuretic effects, they are minimal in comparison to the amount of liquid that you consume.
Alcohol, on the other hand, does lead to dehydration. Alcohol suppresses the production of Antidiuretic Hormone (ADH), which significantly increases the amount of liquid evacuated during urination. Any time you do go out to have a few drinks, remember to drink lots of water, and you'll minimize the nasty effects of dehydration on the body, which is one of the prime factors in the dreaded morning-after hangover.
How Much Water Should I Drink Per Day?
The commonly accepted wisdom regarding hydration is that you should drink 64 ounces of water per day to stay hydrated. In reality, you may need to drink quite a bit more water to that to stay hydrated. According to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, how much water you need depends on many factors, even your gender. The National Academies suggest that men consume around 15-16 cups of water per day and that women consume 11-12 cups daily.
This, of course, includes water that you absorb as a result of your food intake, but this still means that men need around 12 cups of water per day and women need roughly nine. If you're sick, active, or in a hot climate, you'll need even more! Listen to your body. Chronic dehydration doesn't necessarily lead to feelings of thirst. Often, it presents itself fatigue. If you've been feeling tired lately, you may need to drink more water!
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If your doctor only prescribes testosterone by itself, you will
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High estrogen negates a lot of the positives from testosterone
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The solution is to add a drug called Arimidex. It's called an
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This is where HCG (human chorionic gonadotropin) comes in. It
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