Side Effects of Taking Too Much Vitamin B12

Getting too much of a good thing can cause unpleasant, even unsafe, side effects. This is true for several necessary Vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B12. Knowing the facts before you begin vitamin B12 supplementation helps you make informed health decisions and verify if B12 supplements or injections are the right for you.

Possible Side Effects

Vitamin B12 is normally well-tolerated, even in doses well above the suggested dietary allowance, which is 2.4 micrograms daily for mature male and female. Because vitamin B12 is a water soluble vitamin and is excreted in the urine when consumed in excess, it’s complex to overdose on this necessary nutrient. However, there’re a few side effects to be on the lookout for if you are supplementing with vitamin B12 or receiving B12 injections.

Cancer Risks

While vitamin B12 has not been shown to cause cancer, While B12’s connection to cancer requires more research, a 2013 study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute found cancer risks increased with higher B12 blood levels. So again, always check with your doctor before beginning a B12 supplementation routine.

Medication Interactions

Vitamin B12 supplements can cooperate with certain medications, which is one reason you should always check with your doctor before taking high-doses. The University of Maryland Medical Center says the medications may interact with B12 in your body:

  •     H2 blockers
  •     Tetracycline
  •     Metformin
  •     Colchicine
  •     Anti-seizure medications
  •     Bile acid sequestrants
  •     Proton pump inhibitors
  •     Chemotherapy medications
  •     Long-term antibiotics

Following medications may also interact with B12 in your body:

  •     Alcohol
  •     Aspirin
  •     Nicotine
  •     Birth control pills
  •     Nitric oxide
  •     Gout medications
  •     Stimulants
  •     ACE Inhibitors
  •     Bone loss medications
  •     Cancer medications
  •     Nervous system medications
  •     High blood pressure medicine
  •     Heart medication

Other Possible Side Effects

The following side effects may also be connected with B12 supplements or injections:

  •     Diarrhea
  •     Nausea
  •     Facial flushing
  •     Rash, itching, and burning of the skin
  •     Urine discoloration
  •     Low potassium levels
  •     High blood pressure after B12 injections
  •     Difficulty swallowing
  •     Increased blood volume
  •     Pink or red skin discoloration
  •     Narrowing of blood vessels in patients after stent placements
  •     Increases in red blood cells
  •     Elevated uric acid levels, or gout attacks in people with a history of gout

B12 Injection Side Effects

When receiving B12 injections due to B12 deficiency or insufficient absorption of vitamin B12, you might experience side effects connected to the injection. According to Medline Plus, common side effects include diarrhea and a swollen-feeling body, while fewer common side effects may include weakness, muscle pain, cramps, leg pain, frequent urination, extreme thirst, confusion, coughing, wheezing, fatigue, shortness of breath, fast heartbeat, headache, dizziness, red skin color, swelling of arms and legs,  hives, rash, itching, and difficulty breathing. Talk to your doctor if you are experiencing any such side effects from B12 injections.

Avoiding Side Effects

However side effects of excess B12 are rare, there’re some things you can do to avoid effects of high doses of vitamin B12 supplements and injections. Eat plenty of vitamin B12-rich foods and take a multivitamin supplement containing B12 in amounts comparable to RDAs, which

include the following, every day dosages:

  •     Kids ages 1 to 3: 0.9 micrograms
  •     Kids ages 4 to 8: 1.2 micrograms
  •     Kids ages 9 to 13: 1.8 micrograms
  •     Adult male and female: 2.4 micrograms
  •     Pregnant female: 2.6 micrograms
  •     Breastfeeding female: 2.8 micrograms

How Much is Too Much?

Because there is not a bearable upper intake level recognized for vitamin B12, it’s not easy to determine how much is too much. However, the doses of up to 2,000 micro grams from B12 supplements have been safely taken daily for up to 2.5 years in individual with vitamin B12 deficiencies. Because a range of factors are at play medication interactions, B12 absorption rates in your body, etc., it’s best to get a doctor’s suggestion for individualized B12 supplement or injection needs, particularly if you’ve pernicious anemia.

Taking Vitamin B12 Safely

Taking vitamin B12 at levels close to the RDA as part of a multivitamin supplement and intake B12-rich foods likely would not lead to side effects. Take all high-dose B12 supplements, B12 injections, and B12 nasal gel under direct supervision of a health care supplier especially if you are taking medications and report any side effects to your doctor immediately.

Read about : Vitamin B12 Deficiency Anemia

By : Natural Health News

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