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Vitamin B12

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vitamin b12Vitamin B12 is one of the most popular and widely used of all the supplements in the industry today. We have heard of its use for all sorts of reasons, from energy and carbohydrate metabolism to general health and increase in appetite, Vitamin B12 has helped a large percentage of supplement believers. However, something we don't think of when we are measuring our grams of protein, carbohydrates, fats, and calories is how supplements like Vitamin B12 can help us as bodybuilders. The macronutrients are easily tracked and can be taken in at the right levels regularly but micronutrients such as Vitamin B12 can be tougher and therefore must be supplemented.

What is Vitamin B12?

Vitamin B12 is a water soluble vitamin, meaning that it must be taken daily because its supply is regularly diminished by daily hydration in the human body and because it can not be produced in the human body. It assists in metabolism for all cells but specializes in the metabolism of fat for energy. Also, called cobalamin it is of no surprise that it comes from the rare element cobalt and is made to function through a bacterial process.

Types of Vitamin B12

They're many types forms of B12 and they all depend on the way they are intended to be absorbed, the process intended to prepare them and their cost to manufacture. There is cyanocobalamin which is seen in most supplements featuring or containing vitamin B12. This form is semi-synthetic and is normally converted to more biologically available forms in the body from the removal of cyanide. Methylcobalamin is another form of Vitamin B12 in which the cyanide of cyanocobalamin is replaced by a methane delivery system and is more useful to humans upon ingestion. Another form of cobalamin is cobabamide which is another active form that can be supplemented and can be taken by tablet.

How To Take B12

As previously mentioned, no matter what form of Vitamin B12 the user decides to take this vitamin must be taken every day and in fairly high dosages. It has also been shown to work better when taken with a group of B vitamins in a B-complex or in a complete multivitamin. As with most vitamins it is also better absorbed when taken with food and can be digested as part of a meal. The RDA of B12 is 2.4 mcg but because of the absorption right as well as its rapid depletion due to it being a water soluble vitamin mega-dosing and taking a higher dosage than that is recommended to see the powerful effects of B12.

Who Should Be Taking B12?

Everyone can benefit from taking a B12 supplement. Adding more B12 to the amount you are getting out of your regular diet can add to the metabolism of carbohydrates leading to less fat and well as using those carbohydrates for what they are intended to be used for, energy. If that doesn't add appeal to this supplement for this bodybuilding crowd, there are some additional benefits. The presence of B12 will increase appetite. This will allow us to take in those big meals and get bigger than ever. Also it helps support your CNS or central nervous system, which will have you functioning and firing on all of your biggest compound lifts.


    • A study done in Italy speaks to the effectiveness of Vitamin B12 in people with definicies as well as nerve damage due to Alzheimer's Disease ( a degenerative nerve disease). A B complex was administered and it helped repair neurological pathways and helped aid in symptoms
    • A Polish study revealed just how important B12 can be to normal human brain function. The study suggested that a lack of B12 can result in various mental disorders as well as depression. B12 regulates serotonin which helps improve the conditions caused by a B12 deficiency
    • Some studies have shown that B12 can improve brain function in those diagnosed with ADHD


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Written by
Albert Wolfgang is a professional medical writer with over 20 years of experience. He hold multiple personal training certifications, including the coveted NASM and AFAA certificates. He graduated with honors with a B.S. and M.S. in biochemistry with a minor in physical studies. Albert and his team have trained over 100 IFBB professional bodybuilders, including Hollywood stars and many up and coming fitness stars.

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