First one on the site to have a B12 deficiency?

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jjaj2022
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First one on the site to have a B12 deficiency?

#1 Postby jjaj2022 » Sat May 13, 2006 11:55 pm

Over the past few days the palms of my hands and the bottoms of my feet have had this feeling like they are on fire. The burning sensation also has some tingling along with it. I've been doing gardening lately and originally associated it with that, but I do not feel that way anymore. I decided to do a google search for "burning hands and feet" and also "vitamin B12 deficiency" and burning hands and feet are a symptom of vitamin b12 deficiency, according to the websites I found. Apparently the burning symptoms are related to neurological problems that occur when you are B12 deficient.

I've been vegan for 1 year and I haven't been taking any supplements. I started drinking soymilk which is fortified with B12 in April, but stopped about 2 weeks ago when I started a high raw diet. I've really been enjoying eating high raw foods because I feel great. I do not want to have to take supplements, but I'm not sure what to do.

Here are some of the sites I looked at

http://dietary-supplements.info.nih.gov ... b12.asp#h4

http://www.vegsoc.org/info/b12.html

http://www.arthritis-treatment-and-reli ... -feet.html

http://www.medhelp.org/forums/arthritis ... es/33.html

What do you guys think? I'd especially like to hear from some of the raw vegans. Thanks!

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#2 Postby CollegeB » Sun May 14, 2006 12:48 am

Is there anything else that causes the symptom you have?

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#3 Postby compassionategirl » Sun May 14, 2006 1:18 am

CollegeB wrote:Is there anything else that causes the symptom you have?


Yup, and also you might want to check your b12 levels by a naturopathic doctor.

And you cant get loadsa b12 from just a lil nutritional yeast.

No vegan I have ever known has ever suffered from a b12 deficiency and they have been vegan for a decade in some instances. So your symtoms could be related to something else. I suggest visiting a doc but be prepared for the whole

"eat meat" thing is they are old school and totally clueless about nutrition.

keep us posted :D
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#4 Postby Kathryn » Sun May 14, 2006 11:45 am

I, too, like to eat as naturally as possible, and avoid unnecessary supplements, but I think taking supplemental B12 is essential for most people. When people used to drink water from streams and eat food out of their gardens without lots of washing, they got B12 from the soil and water, just as animals do. But nowdays, it would be hard to get B12 from a vegan diet without supplementation. I have read nothing that convinces me otherwise.

Having used Methylcobalamiin (a form of B12 that is harder to find, most is cyanacobalamin) with great success on my diabetic cat who developed neuropathy (nerve damage in his extremities from high levels of blood glucose over time---said by most vets to be incurable), I highly recommend you pick up some and start taking it immediately. It took about a month for me to see the effects in my cat (he had gotten to the point where he was walking on his " knees" and couldn't get up and down stairs or jump onto the sofa...and my vet said it was irreversible. After a month or so, he was back to hopping on the sofa and was walking on his ' wrists"--not quite to the normal " toe walking," so it wasn't compeltely reversible).

www.veganessentials.com has methylcobalamin in a spray (which is what I use in addtion to some supplemented foods). You can find a pill form, Xobaline, which is what I used with my cat, at www.lifelinknet.com .

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#5 Postby jjaj2022 » Sun May 14, 2006 1:08 pm

Thanks for the replies.

Do you guys even think it's possible to have a B12 deficiency after a short time of not getting any (besides the soymilk in april) or could something else be going on?

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#6 Postby compassionategirl » Sun May 14, 2006 1:10 pm

i think something else is going on for the reason that you suggest
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#7 Postby FormicaLinoleum » Sun May 14, 2006 1:18 pm

jjaj2022 wrote:Thanks for the replies.

Do you guys even think it's possible to have a B12 deficiency after a short time of not getting any (besides the soymilk in april) or could something else be going on?

I did think that it took many years of not getting B12 for symptoms to show up. So if your problems are caused by a B12 deficiency, I think it would mean that you've had this deficiency for a long time, not just since you went vegan. There are people who have B12 deficiency not because they don't get any but because their bodies can't properly absorb it.

Or it could be something else. Apparently folic acid deficiency has symptoms very similar to B12 deficiency.

I guess you should have it checked out. In the meantime, you could start taking B12 and see if it helps. But if your body has problems absorbing it, that won't help and I think you would need B12 injections.
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#8 Postby veggymeggy » Sun May 14, 2006 3:55 pm

It's very unlikely that you have a B12 deficiency, unless it is a primary deficiency, as Liz alluded to. B12 is a nutrient the body stores for a long time, so it generally takes years for a deficiency to develop. If you ate a standard omni diet previous to being vegan for a year, and additionally only recently stopped consuming supplemented food, dietary deficiency is highly unlikely to be the cause of your symptoms.
A primary deficiency however would mean your body is in someway hindered in its usage of B12, which is possible, and is the most common cause of nutritional deficiency of most nutrients (within the US).
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#9 Postby Driver » Sun May 14, 2006 3:58 pm

I'm not a doctor, so my opinion is of little practical use to you, but my understanding is that people who absorb B12 "normally" maintain a large B12 reserve to the point that even if they develop a malabsorption syndrome, their reserve will carry them for a few years. That's why old people and long-time vegans are the populations most likely to develop nutrition-related B12 deficiencies - it takes a while for your reserve to dwindle and your symptoms to present even if you're pretty deficient for a pretty long time.


In any case, I know it's got to be scary stuff for you, and I'd get to a doctor as quickly as possible.

Best of luck!

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#10 Postby Kathryn » Mon May 15, 2006 10:34 am

I just read that B12 stores can last for a variable amount of time: anywhere from 6 months to 10 years. I'd always thought one was 'safe' for at least 2 years.

Definitely get your symptoms checked out with a blood test, which will give you a straight answer.

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#11 Postby jjaj2022 » Mon May 15, 2006 11:58 am

Well, I don't think it's a B12 deficiency anymore to be honest. I don't have any other symptoms other than the burning hands and feet. My energy is great and I feel awesome otherwise. I'm going to wait a few more days and see how I feel. I'm thinking it might just be from using the rototiller and working hard in the garden the last few days. Take a look at what I copied from another site. http://www.netdoctor.co.uk/diseases/fac ... miab12.htm



What are the symptoms of anaemia due to vitamin B12 deficiency?


The first symptoms will be unusual tiredness, difficulty in breathing and dizziness.


Further symptoms specific to vitamin B12 deficiency are:


a red, irritated and possibly shiny, tongue.


a reduced sense of taste.


altered or reduced sense of touch.


reduced sense of vibration (an inability to feel the vibrations of a tuning fork).


some people with vitamin B12 deficiency will experience symptoms in their nervous system first.


headache.


psychological symptoms.


pains in the legs (intermittent claudication), difficulties with walking and coordination will gradually occur together with muscle spasm paralysis.


a less sensitive sense of touch.


shortness of breath, palpitation and chest pains (angina).


with pernicious anaemia there is an increased danger of developing cancer of the stomach.

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#12 Postby joelbct » Sun May 28, 2006 8:23 pm

Don't be afraid to go to a doctor- Your health is worth it!

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#13 Postby Crash » Tue May 30, 2006 10:28 am

I second going to your doctor jjaj2022b as this is your health we're talking about.
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