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Vitamin B-12 or Cobalamin is an important nutrient that your body needs to perform essential functions like the production of red blood cells, proper nerve function, and DNA synthesis. Its deficiency can result in problems like fatigue, nerve problems, anemia, poor vision, depression, and dementia. This nutrient is not manufactured by the body and can only be obtained from vitamin B-12 foods. It is found primarily in animal foods like fish, meat, dairy, and eggs. Therefore, vegetarians are most likely to suffer from a B-12 deficiency. Here is a list of foods high in B-12 (along with some vegetarian options as well):
Fish lovers, rejoice! Salmon is one of the best sources of vitamin B-12, with one serving offering 4.9 mcg of the nutrient. In addition, salmon also provides other essential nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids, proteins, and calcium.
Beef is another dietary inclusion you should consider if you want to increase your B-12 intake. One serving of beef provides 2.2 mcg of vitamin B-12. Beef is also a rich source of the antioxidant vitamin A that improves eye health, fights cancer and revitalizes the skin. However, ensure that you enjoy beef in moderation as it is high in saturated fat that can increase your cholesterol levels. Opt for lean beef instead.
3. Fortified Cereals:
You can also obtain your daily dose of this vitamin from cereals high in B-12. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reports consumption of one cup of fortified breakfast cereal daily helps increase B vitamin levels and decreases homocysteine concentrations, thereby helping prevent cardiovascular diseases, stroke, and dementia.
Chicken is another good source of vitamin B-12 and healthier source of this vitamin as compared to beef. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Nutrient Database, 1-cup, of cooked chicken breast meat contains 0.48 mcg of vitamin B-12. Chicken is also rich in protein, calcium, zinc, magnesium, and vitamins B-5 and B-6.
A powerhouse of nutrients like proteins that fight wear and tear, lutein and zeaxanthin that improve eyesight and choline that prevents birth defects in infants, eggs are also rich in vitamin B-12. One hard-boiled egg contains 0.7 mcg of vitamin B-12.
Trade your plate of red meat with a heart-healthy plate of turkey. 3 ounces of roasted white turkey meat contains 0.31 mcg of vitamin B-12. A 3-ounce serving of roasted dark turkey meat contains 1.4 mcg of vitamin B-12. Turkey is also a good source of protein, iron, zinc, potassium, and phosphorus.
Amongst the limited choices of vitamin B-12 foods for vegetarians, cheese is considered a good source of the nutrient. One cup of cottage, Swiss, cheddar and feta cheese contains 1.5, 1.7, 0.4, and 0.9 mcg of vitamin B-12, respectively.
Fancy a cup of yoghurt with your breakfast? Lucky for you, yoghurt is an excellent source of B vitamins including vitamin B-12. One cup of plain low-fat yoghurt offers 1.4 mcg of vitamin B-12. The other B vitamins contained in yoghurt include riboflavin, thiamin, niacin, folate, pantothenic acid, and vitamin B-6. Yoghurt also increases the good bacteria in your gut, thereby improving your digestive health.
Hereâ€™s something to encourage you to pour a glass of milk for yourself, not just for your kids. One cup of low-fat milk contains 1.15 mcg of B-12. In addition, milk also provides a solid dose of bone-boosting calcium.
10. Sea Plants:
Though there are no fruits high in B-12, the veggies high in B-12 include primarily sea plants. These comprise of seaweed, alaria, nori and blue-green algae. These vegetables are often used as key ingredients in salads and soups.
The other foods high in B-12 include crab, mushrooms, lamb, fortified soy, clams, mackerel, trout, and herring. According to The Mayo Clinic, the daily recommended dietary amounts (RDAs) of B-12 are 2.4 micrograms for those aged 14 years and over, 2.6 micrograms for pregnant women and 2.8 micrograms for breastfeeding women.
If you are over 60 years old, it is recommended that you take B-12 supplements to prevent the deficiency of this nutrient. It can so happen that your bodyâ€™s ability to absorb B-12 from food sources can get curbed with age. Find the best general physicians at sehat who treat vitamin B12 Deficiency to know more about how you can maintain healthy B-12 levels, depending upon your age and health condition. Bon AppÃ©tit!