Are you curious about the vitamin B12 gum showing up by the checkout counter at your local stores? It’s available in vegan, gluten-free, and sugar-free formulas and claims to offer the same benefits of B vitamin dietary supplements. But, how do you know if you need more B12 and does the gum really work? Read on to find out!
What is vitamin B12 gum?
B12 gum offers an FDA approved alternative to taking B12 supplements. It looks and tastes pretty much like any other chewing gum. It comes in a variety of flavors, including spearmint, cinnamon, and various fruits. Most vitamin B12 gum is sugar-free and sweetened with either xylitol or aspartame.
Every B12 gum product is a bit different, but most manufacturers include anywhere from 125mcg to 500 mcg of B12 in each piece of gum. Some manufacturers also include additional B vitamins, such as folic acid, vitamin B6, biotin, and niacin.
Manufacturers like B-fresh also include calcium in their formula because B12 improves calcium absorbency. There are also formulas that contain immune system boosting herbs, antioxidants, zinc, iron, vitamins A, C, D, E, and much more.
The Health Benefits of Vitamin B12
Raising your B12 levels offers a host of benefits for your overall health. It’s the go-to vitamin for boosting energy and metabolism, but it does so much more than that. Increasing your B12 levels supports your immune system and helps the body fight off illness.
Healthy B12 levels also support cognitive function, memory, and focus. It also works in conjunction with melatonin to regulate the circadian rhythm so you can fall asleep and stay asleep more easily.
B12 is important for healthy skin, hair, and nails, too! It reduces inflammation, redness, and dryness in the skin, and can also reduce hair breakage and keep nails strong.
What You Need To Know About Vitamin B12 Deficiency
Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin that is also called cobalamin. It essential for nervous system function and the production of red blood cells and DNA. This is essential vitamin is plentiful in animal products like meat, poultry, eggs, fish, and dairy. In addition to gum and mints, bread and plant-based milk alternatives can also be fortified with B12 for those who are on a vegan diet.
Vitamin B12 deficiency is quite common in those with dietary restrictions, digestive issues, and the elderly. Those who take antacids regularly or take metformin for diabetes are also more likely to be deficient.
Unfortunately, vitamin B12 deficiency can go on for years before you begin to show symptoms, and it’s often mistaken for folate deficiency. Low B12 levels can actually cause a deficiency in folate, but increasing folate levels simply masks the real problem.
Here are the nine signs of vitamin B12 deficiency everyone should know:
- Skin that is jaundiced or pale due to a lack of red blood cell production.
- Fatigue and weakness due to poor oxygen circulation caused by a lack of red blood cells. This can lead to an auto-immune condition called pernicious anemia.
- Long term B12 deficiency can cause nerve damage and paresthesia, or a sensation of pins and needles in the feet and hands.
- Over a long period of time, undiagnosed vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to balance issues and may even change the way you move and walk.
- Inflammation of the tongue and mouth ulcers, a condition called glossitis.
- B12 deficiency anemia can lead to a feeling of breathlessness and dizziness.
- B12 deficiency can affect the optic nerves in your eyes and lead to disturbed or blurred vision.
- Mood issues, such as anxiety/depression and dementia have been linked to vitamin B12 deficiency.
- B12 deficiency can lead to periodontitis, gum disease, bad breath, and tooth loss.
Is Vitamin B12 Gum Effective?
So, is chewing vitamin B12 gum an effective way to deliver vitamins to the body? Studies show that it actually does raise B12 levels in the bloodstream. It’s also effective for other water-soluble vitamins like vitamin C.
However, it doesn’t work as well for all vitamins. Fat-soluble vitamins like vitamin E aren’t completely released by the gum, so you may want to try other strategies to help you absorb those nutrients better.
Additional Information About B12 Gum
When choosing B12 gum, look for products that are free of artificial colors and artificial flavors. It’s best to choose products regulated by the Food and Drug Administration and are made in the United States.
As with any dietary supplement, you should always seek medical advice from your health care provider before you start chewing B12 gum, especially if you have a health condition or take any medications.
Increasing your B12 levels can improve your overall health in a variety of ways, especially if you’re on a plant-based diet. B12 gum offers an effective, fun, and convenient alternative to traditional dietary supplements. If you’re looking to boost your energy and metabolism, it’s certainly worth trying!