Supplements warning: A vitamin B12 deficiency can worsen if you take an immune supplement

This Morning: Guest reveals symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency

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However, taking a certain popular supplement alongside the B12 tablets could interfere with treatment and, if anything, could possibly make the B12 deficiency worse. Dr Chris Airey pointed out that some research suggests that taking an immune-boosting supplement, specifically vitamin C, alongside vitamin B12 could cause issues. “Vitamin B12 plays an important role in red blood cell production and the proper functioning of your nervous system,” said Dr Airey.

“And B12 deficiency can lead to poorer nerve health and affect red blood cell development and function.”

Taking vitamin C is thought to break down vitamin B12, thereby reducing vitamin B12 absorption.

Am I deficient in vitamin B12?

The NHS warned that a vitamin B12 deficiency can cause a “wide range of symptoms”.

General symptoms tend to include seemingly harmless ones, such as mouth ulcers, to more worrying concerns such as a decline in your mental capabilities.

A vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to a pale, yellow tinge to the skin and it can also lead to feelings of depression.

Dr Airey advises anybody taking vitamin B12 supplements to take other supplements, such as vitamin C, two hours apart from one another.

By doing so, vitamin B12 reserves can be built up, thereby reducing the symptoms of a vitamin B12 deficiency.

Blood work can determine if you still suffer from a vitamin B12 deficiency, which involves a medical professional taking a blood sample and sending it off to a laboratory.

“It’s important for vitamin B12 deficiency anaemia to be diagnosed and treated as soon as possible,” stated the NHS.

“Although many of the symptoms improve with treatment, some problems caused by the condition can be irreversible if left untreated.”

Full symptoms of a vitamin B12 deficiency:

  • A pale yellow tinge to your skin
  • A sore and red tongue (glossitis)
  • Mouth ulcers
  • Pins and needles (paraesthesia)
  • Changes in the way that you walk and move around
  • Disturbed vision
  • Irritability
  • Depression
  • Changes in the way you think, feel and behave
  • A decline in your mental abilities, such as memory, understanding and judgement (dementia).

Full symptoms of anaemia, caused by a vitamin B12 deficiency:

  • Extreme tiredness (fatigue)
  • Lack of energy (lethargy)
  • Breathlessness
  • Feeling faint
  • Headaches
  • Pale skin
  • Noticeable heartbeats (palpitations)
  • Hearing sounds coming from inside the body, rather than from an outside source (tinnitus)
  • Loss of appetite and weight loss.

Vitamin C supplements

Also known as ascorbic acid, vitamin C can help to protect cells, maintain healthy blood vessels, bones, and cartilage, and help with wound healing.

Aside from supplements, good sources of vitamin C can be found in citrus fruits, peppers, strawberries, blackcurrants, and potatoes.

“You should be able to get all the vitamin C you need from your daily diet,” said the NHS.

However, as vitamin C can’t be stored in the body, it is needed in the diet everyday.

If you do decide to take vitamin C supplements, make sure you are not taking more than 1,000mcg daily.

Otherwise, if you do, toxicity can lead to stomach pain, diarrhoea, and flatulence.

“These symptoms should disappear once you stop taking vitamin C supplements,” the health body assured.

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