If you’ve undergone gastrointestinal surgeries or have gastrointestinal disorders. Gastric bypass or other stomach surgery can compromise the body’s ability for normal, healthy absorption of B12. If you have IBS, Chrohn’s disease or celiac disease, you are also at a potential higher risk, as you may be unable to absorb enough vitamin B12 from your food, or to produce adequate intrinsic factor, a compound needed further along in digestion to absorb B12 in the small intestine.
If you’re over age 50. Changes in the stomach lining as we age can reduce the production of gastric acid for up to an estimated 30% of the population; in this case, you no longer can unlock adequate amounts of B12 from the foods you eat. For this reason, it’s recommended that all Americans over age 50 consume 25-100 mcg/day of supplemental B12. What’s the difference? In fortified foods and supplements, B12 is already in its free form and doesn’t require gastric acid for separation in the stomach.
Boost B12 in Your Diet
Vitamin B12 is naturally found in some foods (animal foods like seafood, poultry, beef, pork and dairy products are the most reliable sources), added to others (like fortified breakfast cereal) and available as a dietary supplement or prescription medication. Here are four of the most powerful ways you can start including more B12 in your diet.
Begin With a Breakfast of Champions
Fortified breakfast cereals are an affordable, super easy way to get the B12 you need. Check the label and choose your favorite whole grain cereal that provides 25-100% of the Daily Value (DV) of B12. Add 1 cup of organic lowfat or skim milk or yogurt for another 15-20% DV of B12, and you can meet your needs before you’ve cleared the breakfast table.