Vegetarians and Vit B 12 - McDowell's Herbal Treatments


Where do Vegetarians obtain Vitamin B12 from?

Traditionally vegetarians thought that Vitamin B12 was readily avaialble in Mushrooms, however the latest research may disput this Some reseacrh on mushrooms is being done at Uni of western Sydney that is meant to be finished in 2008 / 9.

However, those who do not eat meat should not rely on mushrooms as they provide only about 10% of daily requiremnets as a source of vitamin B12. Eggs and dairy products will supply vitamin B12 for vegetarians, but those who eat no animal products should get B12 from a supplement or from some soy products to which the vitamin has been added. Getting enough vitamin B12. Animal foods provide all the B12 you need -- so if you have dairy foods or eggs you're OK. Vegans can get B12 from soy milk and cereals that have it added, and studies are under way to check if the type of B12 found in mushrooms is used by the body. Elecampane and spirulina, once thought to be sources of B12, have been found to contain a form the body can't use. There are also questions regarding the body's ability to use the B12 found in fermented soya products such as tempeh. It's hard to spot a B12 deficiency until after damage has occurred -- once you can notice the damage to blood cells and nerves, it's too late -- so it's a good idea to have your blood B12 levels checked regularly if you're a vegan, and pregnant or breastfeeding vegans may need a supplement.

Children may too, once breastfeeding stops, unless they are having a formula or soy drink that has added B12.

click here to read the CHOICE article on "Going Vegetarian"

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