10 foods high in vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 is a hot topic these days, as vegetarian and vegan diets have gained popularity, conversations about B12 and related deficiency conditions have become more frequent. Although we often hear about the importance of taking vitamin B12 in supplement form, there are also certain foods high in B12 that can increase your intake.

But what exactly is vitamin B12—why should we care about it, and how does it help the body work and function properly?

What is Vitamin B12?

Vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin, is a water-soluble vitamin. Water-soluble vitamins are those that the body cannot easily store, so we must consume them regularly (daily) to avoid deficiency states.

Vitamin B12 is essential for good health and development. It binds with folic acid (vitamin B9) and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) to make healthy red blood cells and nerves. Vitamin B12 also helps in the production of DNA, RNA and other genetic material.

Vitamin B12 is known for its important role in our metabolism, especially fat metabolism. B12 deficiency can lead to feelings of fatigue and an increased risk of obesity.

 

Why should we get enough vitamin B12?

There is quite a long list of conditions due to vitamin B12 deficiency: megaloblastic anemia, fatigue, constipation, loss of appetite, unwanted weight loss, numbness in hands and feet, difficulty maintaining balance, pain in the mouth, and even impaired mental health . These are almost all symptoms of B12 deficiency.

What’s perhaps even more important (because, let’s be honest, we’re all fitness and sports enthusiasts in general) is that a B12 deficiency can actually harm performance and recovery during exercise.

Many of us like to be active, so it’s important to keep in mind that B12 needs may be higher in athletes than in people who lead a sedentary lifestyle.

And this may be an even more important consideration for people following a vegan or vegetarian diet.

So to make it easy for you, we’ve compiled a list of our 10 favorite foods that are packed with B12 so you never have to worry about being deficient again.

10 foods high in vitamin B12

It is important to note that the recommended daily allowance of vitamin B12 is 1.5 µg (micrograms). Just so you can get an idea of ​​how much B12 is in the foods we list and if it meets what you need. Now to the list…

  1. Liver

    It may not be a favorite food of some of you, but liver is one of the richest products of nutrients and vitamins that we can add to our diet.

    Depending on the source, liver can provide up to 20 mcg of vitamin B12 per 100g serving. That’s a lot! Liver is also full of iron and vitamin B6, which are great for keeping your energy levels up, while also being rich in protein.

  2. Molluscs

    Have you ever eaten oysters or clams? If vitamin B12 deficiency is bothering you, it might be worth adding them to your menu.

    100 g of mussels provide you with a whopping 80-100 mcg of vitamin B12. Oysters contain a not so high but still quite impressive 16-18 mcg per 100g serving. Pectinides are not as rich in vitamin B12 (providing around 1.2-1.5 mcg per 100g serving) but would still help you reach your RDA with one serving.

    These foods are also rich in protein, iron and zinc (which supports our immune system and many important body processes) and other minerals.

  3. Salmon

    100 g of salmon provides about 3 mcg of vitamin B12. Besides being super tasty, salmon is also one of the most nutritious sources of protein in our diet. You should consider adding it to your menu for its omega-3 content alone. Omega-3s are polyunsaturated fatty acids that help support heart and brain health.Try our poke bowl recipe to change up the way you normally eat salmon…

  4. Tuna fish

    Many of you will remember eating canned tuna, but we must note that tuna is much more than that.

    On the one hand, it is a great source of vitamin B12. A 100g serving of tuna will provide just over 2.2 – 2.4 mcg of vitamin B12.

    Tuna is also rich in omega 3, as well as vitamin B6 and potassium (an important electrolyte that helps ensure our muscles and nerves function properly).

  5. Minced meat (beef)

    Many people who train with weights know how important vitamin B12 intake is for training, in fact, we are sure that they have become almost experts when it comes to this vitamin. And here’s another classic bodybuilding food that will also provide a good amount of vitamin B12.  100 g of cooked minced meat gives you a similar amount of B12 as a portion of tuna – between 2.2 – 2.5 mcg.

    Ground beef is also packed with protein and is a great source of iron.Try our favorite homemade beef sandwich recipe…

  6. Milk

    Fresh milk and other dairy products are rich sources of vitamin B12. Fresh milk has about 1.1 – 1.4 mcg per 250 ml (one standard cup).

    It’s also a great source of calcium (to support healthy bones and teeth) and both slower and faster digesting forms of protein (casein and whey protein).

  7. Yoghurt

    150g of plain yogurt provides approximately 1mcg of vitamin B12, which is a great serving of the vitamin. Like fresh milk, yogurt is a good source of calcium, a high-quality source of protein, and a pretty good source of probiotics (bacteria that are thought to positively affect gut bacteria, which may also contribute to possible mental and physical health benefits. ).

  8. Eggs (whole)

    Eggs are also a good source of vitamin B12, providing up to 0.6 mcg per egg.

    That’s one heck of a serving if you ask us. Additionally, eggs are also a great source of monounsaturated fats (they can support heart health when they replace unhealthy fats in the diet) and vitamin D.

    Vitamin D is critical for many functions in the body, from bone health to mental health.Everything tastes better when it’s in a tortilla , try our recipe and see for yourself:

  9. Fortified foods and cereals

    Any excuse to eat more grains is always welcome, and they can actually help you get more vitamin B12 into your diet.

    Pay attention to the information on the labels about vitamin B12 (or cobalamin), because all foods have different contents; enriched nutritional yeast, for example, can contain up to 23-25 ​​mcg per 15 g of product. 

  10. Tempe

    Everyone’s favorite vegan rapper, Tinie Tempeh. Just kidding, although tempeh contains quite a “small” amount of B12 per serving, with only about 0.1 mcg of B12 per 100g of product.

    Then you might be wondering why tempeh is on this list. That’s because it’s actually one of the best plant-based sources of vitamin B12, which is why it’s usually a good idea for people following a vegan or vegetarian diet to take vitamin B12 in supplement form , luckily we can help with this.

 

Conclusion 

Vitamin B12 has a diverse and important role in the body, ranging from the production of our DNA to the formation of healthy functioning red blood cells. Animal sources, especially liver, shellfish and red meat, are incredibly rich in B12. Some vegetarian-friendly sources, such as some dairy products and eggs, are also great sources.

For those who avoid most, if not all, animal products, you may want to consider taking B12 in supplement form to minimize the risk of deficiency. It is also recommended that older readers supplement or at least start including some of these high B12 foods in their diet.

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