Often asked: What Should Vitamin B12 Levels Be?

What level of B12 is considered low?

Values of less than 160 pg/mL (118 pmol/L) are a possible sign of a vitamin B12 deficiency. People with this deficiency are likely to have or develop symptoms. Older adults with a vitamin B12 level less than 100 pg/mL (74 pmol/L) may also have symptoms.

What happens when your vitamin B12 is low?

Not having enough B12 can lead to anemia, which means your body does not have enough red blood cells to do the job. This can make you feel weak and tired. Vitamin B12 deficiency can cause damage to your nerves and can affect memory and thinking.

Can you have B12 deficiency with normal levels?

However, a normal blood value cannot rule out a B12 deficiency, as has often been shown in scientific medical literature. Serum B12 can be false normal or even false high, while a deficiency is present.

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Is a B12 level of 300 normal?

A serum vitamin B12 level between 200 pg/mL and 900 pg/mL is considered normal, but a threshold of 300 to 350 pg/mL is recognized as a marker for a desirable status in the elderly. The laboratory diagnosis is usually based on low serum vitamin B12 levels or elevated serum methylmalonic acid and homocysteine levels.

How long does it take to recover from B12 deficiency?

Recovery from vitamin B12 deficiency takes time and you may not experience any improvement during the first few months of treatment. Improvement may be gradual and may continue for up to six to 12 months.

What does a low B12 blood test mean?

Low. Levels of vitamin B-12 are low if they are below 200 ng/mL. This result suggests a vitamin B-12 deficiency, pernicious anemia, or an overactive thyroid. People with low vitamin B-12 levels often experience neurological symptoms.

How can I raise my B12 levels fast?

To increase the amount of vitamin B12 in your diet, eat more of foods that contain it, such as:

  1. Beef, liver, and chicken.
  2. Fish and shellfish such as trout, salmon, tuna fish, and clams.
  3. Fortified breakfast cereal.
  4. Low-fat milk, yogurt, and cheese.
  5. Eggs.

How long does it take for B12 supplements to work?

A response usually is seen within 48 to 72 hours, with brisk production of new red blood cells. Once B12 reserves reach normal levels, injections of vitamin B12 will be needed every one to three months to prevent symptoms from returning.

Can low B12 cause weight gain?

People with vitamin B12 deficiency are likely to experience a wide range of symptoms, though weight gain is unlikely one of them. If you’re experiencing unexplained weight gain, consider discussing it with your healthcare provider or a registered dietitian to determine the root cause.

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Should I be worried if my B12 is high?

Though daily high doses of B12 are unlikely to cause harm in most people, extremely high doses should be avoided unless prescribed by a healthcare professional. If you think you may be deficient in B12, speak with your doctor, who can recommend an appropriate treatment based on your level of deficiency.

What does a B12 deficiency tongue look like?

B12 deficiency will also make the tongue sore and beefy-red in color. Glossitis, by causing swelling of the tongue, may also cause the tongue to appear smooth.

What are the neurological symptoms of B12 deficiency?

A lack of vitamin B12 can cause neurological problems, which affect your nervous system, such as:

  • vision problems.
  • memory loss.
  • pins and needles (paraesthesia)
  • loss of physical co-ordination (ataxia), which can affect your whole body and cause difficulty speaking or walking.

Is 500 a good B12 level?

The vitamin B12 standard reference range is 200–700 pg/ml whereas the proposed optimal range is 500–1300 pg/ml [10]. Higher vitamin B12 ranges have been associated with increased cognitive function, and reflexes, decreased brain atrophy, confusion, weakness and depression [10].

Can low B12 cause hair loss?

When vitamin B12 levels are low, your hair follicles may not be able to grow new hair as efficiently, resulting in hair loss. A vitamin B12 deficiency can also cause symptoms of anemia, which is associated with low iron levels, hair thinning, and hair loss.

Can lack of vitamin B12 cause dizziness?

Breathlessness and Dizziness

If you become anemic due to a B12 deficiency, you may feel short of breath and a bit dizzy, especially when you exert yourself. This is because your body lacks the red blood cells it needs to get enough oxygen to your body’s cells.

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