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Vitamin B12 Vitamins are essential to keep you healthy maintain a good metabolism and to stimulate growth especially in children They aid in the formation of hormones blood cells and genetic material The vitamin B complex composed of eight forms of vitamin B works together to absorb and burn energy It helps convert proteins carbohydrates and fats into fuel and in the brain it helps synthesize mood controlling chemicals Vitamin B is also good for the body because it helps fight cancer cardiovascular diseases and mental deterioration When there is deficiency of this vitamin there is extreme weakness and it may develop into a psychiatric problem The vitamin B12 also known as cobalamin is one of the members of the B complex and although needed in very small amounts it plays a key role in the production of new cells and preservation of a healthy nervous system Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin found only in animal originated products The recommended amount of vitamin B12 is 3 micrograms per day and it can be found in liver eggs meat fish yeast poultry and dairy products This vitamin is bound to proteins and during digestion hydrochloric acid in the stomach separates it and binds it to a special substance called intrinsic factor that increases absorption in the small intestine Vitamin B12 works best with folic acid another type of vitamin B to produce red blood cells in the bone marrow form and replicate DNA and build and maintain myelin to protect nerve cells and speed up the conduction of nerve signals Other functions carried out by this vitamin are digestion of fats carbohydrates proteins and production of some neurotransmitters in the brain that influence mood sleep and hunger Vitamin B12 deficiency may be caused by inability of the stomach to produce the intrinsic factor which helps in the absorption of this vitamin or simply because of a poor diet with little
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