The TRUTH About Vitamin B12 (VEGANS VS. NON-VEGANS!)

I came across a paper the other day that I found interesting.

I feel it answers some common questions that people have, as well as putting some harmful myths to bed.

I want to preface by pointing out that the ongoing Framingham Offspring Study found that 39% of the US population has B12 levels in the “low-normal” range. Whereas 16% are deficient, and 9% fall below current deficiency levels.

And that’s only looking at the Framingham Offspring Study sample size of 6,507 Americans, within the New England area, as of 2015. So, those figures could be inevitably LARGER across the wider US population.

However, let’s just assume for a moment that the Framingham Offspring data is a relatively accurate representation of the ENTIRE US population.

If we take into account that only 0.5% of the US population are vegan, and if we were to assume, incorrectly I might add, that ALL vegans are B12 deficient, that would still leave 38.5% of US omnivores with “low-normal” B12 status, and 15.5% and 8.5% that are B12 deficient or below-deficient, respectively.

Ergo, B12 deficiency is clearly not a vegan phenomenon.

Now, with the preface out of the way, I will move onto the paper that I wanted to share.

And I’ve linked to the FULL paper over at my blog for you to download and read at your convenience. The blog, as always, is linked down in the description to this video, as well as in my pinned comment.

Over the course of 8 months, researchers examined 4 groups of people. A group of vegans who did not supplement B12, but instead consumed 12 grams Nori algae and 15 grams sun-dried wild mushrooms per week. A second group of vegans who did supplement with a synthetic B12 daily, but did not consume any Nori or mushrooms. A group of lacto-ovo vegetarians. And a group of meat eaters. Each participant’s blood levels were analyzed at 6 different times over the course of the 8 months, including baseline measurements.

Now, before I move to the results, keep in mind that the amount of Nori the participants consumed would provide them with 2.4 micrograms of B12 per day, and the amount of mushrooms the participants consumed would provide them with 0.7 micrograms of B12 per day. Based on the US RDA for vitamin B12, the vegans consuming the Nori and mushrooms should have been receiving ample quantities. In fact, just the amount of Nori alone should’ve satisfied their daily requirements for the vitamin.

What the researchers found was… enlightening!

First of all, it is clear that vegans who DO NOT supplement B12, and consume only Nori and mushrooms, are in the fast-lane to deficiency!

A word to those vegans out there who don’t believe in supplements of any kind: stop it! Just stop it! Seriously.

Or suffer the nasty consequences, and possibly earn yourselves a Darwin Award as a result.

And if you DO fuck yourselves up, it isn’t fair to blame veganism. Instead, you can blame your ‘Hippie’ stupidity!

Really, I am just sick of the vegans who fuck up on their diets, and instead of taking responsibility for their poor or misinformed choices, they blanketly blame veganism.

A diet which has undergone multiple peer-reviews over the years, by experts, and has been found to be acceptable for ALL stages of life, so long as it is properly-planned. Key words there: “properly-planned”.

And these morons, in turn, provide anti-science nutters, like Sv3rige, constant motivation for their anti-vegan crusade.

On that note, if you watch a guy like Sv3rige for anything more than pure entertainment, you are also very likely a candidate for the Darwin Award. Just saying.

Now, back to the study, as you can plainly see, vegans who supplement with synthetic B12 actually have total B12 levels relatively equal to the lacto-ovo vegetarian group, and significantly BETTER than the meat-eater group! Though, none of those three groups were deficient.

It is worth noting that the meat-eaters did not appear to supplement with B12. And of the vegetarian group, 13% of individuals had received B12 injections at least once, but the rest did not supplement in any capacity.

Ergo, it appears that supplementing with a synthetic B12 can lead to better B12 levels in the blood than from consuming meat, but vegans DO need to supplement! They should not rely on whole foods alone, no matter what nutritional claims come attached to particular foods.

And I could give a rat’s ass about “awesome” personal anecdotes from some hippie-dippie, whole foods, anti-supplement Fruitarian.

The reason being is that foods like Nori and sun-dried wild mushrooms contain pseudovitamin B12, which resembles the actual vitamin B12, but does not function in the same way.

As the blood results from that paper so clearly demonstrate.

Anyway, do leave your thoughts and comments below.

REFERENCES

B12 Deficiency May Be More Widespread Than Thought https://www.ars.usda.gov/news-events/news/research-news/2000/b12-deficiency-may-be-more-widespread-than-thought/

The Influence of a Whole Food Vegan Diet with Nori Algae and Wild Mushrooms on Selected Blood Parameters https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Thomas_Dschietzig/publication/272074433_The_Influence_of_a_Whole_Food_Vegan_Diet_with_Nori_Algae_and_Wild_Mushrooms_on_Selected_Blood_Parameters/links/54ec27970cf2082851bf50cd/The-Influence-of-a-Whole-Food-Vegan-Diet-with-Nori-Algae-and-Wild-Mushrooms-on-Selected-Blood-Parameters.pdf

Position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Vegetarian Diets. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27886704

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