Vitamin b12
Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12: Food List, and Deficiency Risk Factors and Symptoms

Vitamin B12 is a vitamin that is beneficial for the formation of proteins, blood cells, and tissues. Daily vitamin B12 needs can be obtained through food or supplements.

Vitamin B12 is naturally contained in fish, shellfish, meat, liver, eggs, milk, yogurt, and cheese. In addition, vitamin B12 can also be found in cereals that have been fortified or enriched with this vitamin.

In general, the daily needs of vitamin B12 can be met by eating the food or drink mentioned above. However, in people suffering from indigestion, cancer, HIV infection, or malnutrition, there can be a deficiency of vitamin B12, so intake of vitamin B12 supplements (cyanocobalamine) is required.

Vitamin B12 deficiency can also occur in pregnant women, the elderly, people who often consume excessive amounts of alco**hol, and vegetarians.

Vitamin B12 Foods

The needs of vitamin B12 can be met by eating various types of foods containing vitamin B12, such as:


In 85 grams of cooked clams, it contained about 84 mcg of vitamin B12. Consuming shellfish in such quantities is also able to meet 15% of daily potassium needs. You can serve shellfish by stews or made pasta. But before the process, it is best to steam or boil the clams for 5 minutes, until the clam shells are open.


About 85 grams of crabs contain 10 mcg of vitamin B12. In addition to containing vitamin B12, crab meat also contains vitamins A, B, C, and magnesium. Crab can be served as an appetizer or as a salad mix.


Every 85 grams of sardines contains 7.5 mcg of vitamin B12. In addition, sardines also contain a lot of calcium, vitamin D, and omega-3 fatty acids.

Other Vitamin B12 Foods

Vitamin b12 foods
Vitamin B12: Food List, and Deficiency Risk Factors and Symptoms 2
  • Salmon
  • Tuna fish
  • Beef.
  • Milk.
  • Yogurt
  • Eggs.
  • Chicken meat

For those of you who are vegetarian, don’t worry. Vitamin B12 can also be obtained from plant food products, such as

  • Seaweed,
  • Mushrooms, and
  • Tempeh.

Vitamin B12 Deficiency Risk Factors

Since the source of vitamin B12 is only found in meat, vegetarian groups are one of the groups at high risk of vitamin B deficiency. Vegetarians and vegans who consume plant protein and other vegetable sources will find it difficult to get the source of vitamin B12. This makes the vegetarian group need to take B vitamin supplements.

Some people who may be at risk of this vitamin deficiency for example are the elderly. Seniors experience decreased gastric acid production, thus also lowering the absorption of vitamin B12 into the body. People with digestive system diseases can be at risk of decreased absorption of nutrients, one of which is vitamin B12.

Vitamin B12 Deficiency Symptoms

Some signs and symptoms of Vitamin B12 deficiency that you need to know, among others:

Pale or yellow skin

People whose body lack of vitamin B12 often look pale or have the little yellow color of the skin as well as white eyes. This is because lack of vitamin B12 will cause problems with the production of the body’s red blood cells.

Vitamin B12 plays an important role in the production of DNA needed to create red blood cells in the body. Without it, the instructions for building cells become incomplete and cannot divide.

These red blood cells are too large to be removed from the bone marrow and into circulation. Therefore, if it does not have many red blood cells circulating throughout the body, it will cause the skin to look pale or yellow.

Weak and easily tired

Another symptom that will be felt due to the body lacking vitamin B12 is easily tired and weak. This happens because it does not have enough vitamin B12 to make red blood cells that transport oxygen throughout the body.

As a result, the body is unable to transport oxygen efficiently to the body’s cells and makes a person who is lacking vitamin B12 weak and limp. People with pernicious anemia do not produce enough important proteins referred to as intrinsic factors.

Intrinsic factors are essential to prevent the lack of vitamin B12 in the body because the vitamins in the gut will bind and can be absorbed well.

Glossitis and mouth ulcers

Glossitis is a term used to describe inflammation of the tongue. If the tongue is inflamed, it will usually change color, shape, and pain until it swells. In addition to being painful, glossitis can change the way you eat and talks.

A study shows that a swollen and inflamed tongue is an early sign of vitamin B12 deficiency.

In addition, some people with B12 deficiency may experience other oral symptoms, such as thrush, feelings of pins and needles, as well as burning and itching sensations.

Other symptoms

  • Shortness of breath and dizziness
  • Impaired vision

Read also:
Causes of Shortness of Breath After Eating

Last Updated on August 22, 2020 Reviewed by Market Health Beauty Team

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