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Potential Health Benefits
Given the vital roles that vitamin B12 plays in your body, a deficiency can have serious health consequences.
In fact, low blood levels of the vitamin have been linked to several health problems.
Low levels of vitamin B12 have been linked to a decline in brain function.
However, results have been mixed and treatment with vitamin B12 wasn’t effective at improving brain function in people with normal brain function (19Trusted Source, 20Trusted Source, 21Trusted Source).
It’s been suggested that there may be a link between low vitamin B12 levels and depression.
However, one review found that treating depression with vitamin B12 didn’t reduce the severity of symptoms.
Nevertheless, it was suggested that taking the vitamin on a long-term basis could help prevent a relapse into depression (22Trusted Source).
Currently, there is a lack of quality research in this area. Higher quality studies are needed to find out if there is a link between vitamin B12 and depression (23Trusted Source).
Osteoporosis is a disease in which the loss of bone mass results in weaker bones and an increased risk of bone fractures.
Interestingly, low blood levels of vitamin B12 have been linked with reduced bone mass (24Trusted Source).
Age-related macular degeneration is a condition that causes you to gradually lose central vision, usually in both eyes.
In people aged 50 and over, adequate consumption of vitamin B12 is thought to be important for maintaining good vision and protecting against macular degeneration.
7 years later, the study found a 35% lower risk of age-related macular degeneration among the women who took the supplements.
Although the reduction in risk can’t be attributed to vitamin B12 only, it does suggest that getting enough may be important.
Recently, vitamin B12 injections and infusions have become popular among healthy people who don’t appear to have a deficiency.
Advocates of this approach claim that regular injections can boost energy levels and help with weight loss and mood.
Vitamin B12 Shots Are Very Effective
An untreated vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to neurological problems or pernicious anemia, which occurs when your body doesn’t have enough B12 to produce the amount of red blood cells it needs (16Trusted Source).
Vitamin B12 shots are the most common way to prevent or treat a deficiency. The injections are prescribed by a doctor and given intramuscularly, or into muscle.
Injections are usually given as hydroxocobalamin or cyanocobalamin. These are very effective at raising blood levels of B12 and preventing/reversing a deficiency.