What is the Vitamin that Makes You Happy? Vitamin B12 is Your Mood Booster
The Happy Vitamin
Vitamin B12 is your secret super power.
We all know that vitamins are fundamental in our lives, but I'm not sure that we think that much about what nutrients we are deficient in.
Low levels of vitamins can have a cascade of negative effects in our brains and bodies which can creep up on us. We just get used to our brains slowing down, not sleeping like we used to and having to cope with a different digestive system.
Vitamin B12 could be just what you need to feel like yourself again. To feel happy, calm and full of energy.
Vitamin B12 as a nootropic can improve your alertness, energy levels, boost your attention span, concentration, intelligence and memory.
B12 supplementation can help relieve your stress, depression, insomnia and help balance your mood.
B12 is important for everyone. And the symptoms of low levels can be easily missed.
It is vital for a healthy brain.
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin) is one of 8 water-soluble B-vitamins that are absolutely vital to the highly optimized brain. And is essential to every cell in your body including your brain.
Vitamin B12 increases cognition. Vitamin B12 is a precursor in the biosynthesis of all major neurotransmitters in your brain including acetylcholine, dopamine, GABA, norepinephrine and serotonin.
It helps make DNA, nerve and blood cells. It is also crucial for your metabolism and your immune system.
How does it feel to have enough Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)?
Neurohackers who supplement with Vitamin B12 report a reduction in brain fog and better sleep.
They report better focus and mood, colours seem brighter and more intense, energy levels improve, and an overall improved sense of well-being.
If you are Vitamin B12 deficient you may feel a big boost in energy. And feelings of deep exhaustion can disappear within a few days.
What is B12?
Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin with only a little being able to be stored in your body and you only absorb what you need at that time. This is good news if you need to boost your levels but you are worried about taking too much.
Your body does not produce this vitamin so you get it from the food you eat or from supplements.
Foods to eat for B12
B12 is only found in animal products like:
fortified foods (like some non-dairy milks, some meat substitutes, some cereals and grains)
People at risk
Up to 26% of people don't get enough B12 and they're more likely to be vegan or vegetarian. It is one of the recommended vitamins for all vegans to take.
Other people who may be more likely to be deficient are:
Over 50s (due to reducing stomach acidity)
Celiac or Digestive issues (and medications for stomach acidity)
Women on the Contraceptive Pill
Any woman, at any age, can encounter a Vitamin B12 deficiency.
There are certain groups of women, however, at increased risk of Vitamin B12 deficiency, including: menopausal and postmenopausal women. The hormonal imbalances that occur during and after menopause can lead to Vitamin B12 deficiency in women.
Getting enough vitamin B12 through your diet is very difficult.
You cannot get adequate amounts of Vitamin B12 from plants.
Vegetarians and vegans are especially in danger of B12 deficiency.
However, if you struggle to obtain enough or have a condition that affects absorption, supplements are a simple way to increase your B12 intake.
It’s a huge piece of the jigsaw if you want to take care of your brain and mental health.
B12 is also known as the energy vitamin. Low levels affect red blood cell production and this leads to feelings of:
difficulty processing information
slow reasoning and decision making
Symptoms often mimic those of dementia and are also common symptoms of the menopause. If you are experiencing any unexplained cognitive decline please get tested for B12 deficiency by your doctor.
Vitamin B12 helps reduce depression. Vitamin B12 is a precursor in the biosynthesis of GABA and serotonin.
GABA is an amino acid and neurotransmitter produced by glutamate in your brain. This inhibitory neurotransmitter prevents other ‘excitatory’ neurotransmitters from being released.
This results in an anti-anxiety and calming effect.
Serotonin is a neurotransmitter made from the amino acid tryptophan Adequate serotonin levels make you feel confident, easy-going, flexible, happy and positive.
B12 plays a vital role in making serotonin, the neurotransmitter responsible for regulating your mood.
Serotonin helps with your sleep, reduces your anxiety and enhances your mood.
It plays a big part in making your happy chemicals.
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin) to Treat Depression
Research shows that people with major depression often have low blood levels of folate and Vitamin B12. Low folate levels are also linked to poor response to antidepressants. And treatment with folic acid and/or Vitamin B12 has been shown to improve response to antidepressants.
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin) is one of 8 water-soluble B-vitamins that are absolutely vital to the highly optimised brain. And is essential to every cell in your body including your brain.
Vitamin B12 as a nootropic can improve alertness, energy levels, boost attention span, concentration, intelligence and memory.
B12 supplementation can help relieve stress, depression, insomnia and help balance your mood.
What B12 to take?
Low quality Vitamin B12 supplements, and B12 found in multivitamins or B-Complex formulas, is usually cyanocobalamin.
This form of B12 is not well absorbed, and produces a small amount of cyanide in your body (cyanocobalamin).
Higher quality Vitamin B12 comes as methylcobalamin which is the form of B12 naturally occurring in your body.
Methylcobalamin is your better choice if you are deficient in B12, or have the MTHFR genetic defect which reduces your ability to methylate this vitamin.
The Bottom Line
Vitamin B12 is crucial to your healthy psychological functioning. Or in other words - you need good levels of B12 for your brain to function properly and to take care of your mental health.
You would find it hard to add anything more powerful to boost your mood into your daily routine.
So if you only do one thing this week for your future health then start taking B12.
How you feel tomorrow, starts today.
Back to THE VITAMIN SMITH