Vitamin B12 Injection – VitaJab
Who needs a B12 injection?
The recommended daily intake (RDI) of vitamin B12 is 6 micrograms per day. Making deficiency fairly common, especially for those who follow a vegetarian or vegan diet.
In fact, it is thought that up to 90% of people following these diets could have a deficiency. This is because vitamin B12 is only found naturally in animal-based foods.
However, deficiency is not limited to those following vegan and vegetarian diets. Even some people who eat meat don't absorb B12 very well.
Unlike other vitamins, the absorption of vitamin B12 depends on a protein produced in your stomach, called intrinsic factor.
Intrinsic factor binds to vitamin B12 so that you can absorb it into the blood. People who don’t produce enough intrinsic factor can become deficient.
Deficiency can be particularly common among elderly people, because the ability to absorb vitamin B12 can worsen with age.
Other people at risk of deficiency include those who have had intestinal surgery, including weight loss surgery. Those with diseases that affect the gut, such as Crohn’s disease or celiac disease, are also potentially at risk.
How do I get a Vitamin B12 injection?
Thanks to our partners VitaJab, Vitamin B12 injections are available in the Gartcosh and Elderslie Reach Pharmacy branches. Check out the VitaJab website and see where your closest branch is.
What is Vitamin B12?
Vitamin B12 is an essential compound that we get from animal-based food sources. It's vital to maintain the normal functioning of the brain, nervous system and the processes involved in producing red blood cells. Sub-optimal levels of B12 can lead the body to express symptoms of tiredness, fatigue, malaise, poor memory and reduced mental function also referred to as 'mental fog'.
Found naturally in meat, poultry, eggs and milk, Vitamin B12 is also a key component of many oral vitamin supplements aimed at increasing energy levels. Because the vitamin is water-soluble, it quickly leaves the body in our urine via our kidneys, meaning that we need regular amounts. It's not harmful in high doses and plays a vital role alongside other vitamins and minerals in optimising the various processes within the body.
Vitamin B12 supplementation is essential for those following a plant-based diet.
Vitamin B12 injection vs Tablets
Vitamin B12 can be found in animal-based foods, fortified foods such as cereals, and oral vitamin supplements. However, the problem can be that the digestive system isn't always efficient at absorbing the compound, meaning a large amount can simply pass straight through unabsorbed. Taking certain medicines regularly can cause this, just as having certain bowel complaints can too.
If we deliver the medicine directly into the deltoid muscle at the top of the arm, we dramatically increase the usable amount available to the cells in our body; this is the benefit of intramuscular supplementation. One injection may provide several weeks and months worth of benefit without the need to take a daily vitamin B12 supplement, given the amount administered each time.