Importance of Vitamin B12 and Vitamin E in your diet

posted by Chris Valentine

Your diet should ideally include a healthy mix of minerals and vitamins. However, these two vitamins are incredibly crucial to your body – Vitamin B12 and Vitamin E. 

Let’s understand why – 

Health benefits of Vitamin E 

Vitamin E is great for the skin, your cells and your immune system. You will find a ton of cosmetic products that contain Vitamin E because of how smooth and supple it makes the skin. 

Vitamin E is a fat-soluble nutrient and functions as an anti-oxidant which means it blocks free radicals and is hence found in anti-aging products. 

It also protects cells from damage, lowers the risk for cancer and heart disease and even dementia. Apart from protecting the cells, Vitamin E is great for the immune system. Since it is an antioxidant, it can help fight off infections. 

Vitamin E is also great for the eyes. Age-related cataracts and macular degeneration can be prevented by an intake of Vitamin E.

It also plays an important part in producing prostaglandins. Prostaglandins are hormone-like substances that regulate the blood pressure and muscle contraction. Studies have found that Vitamin E can aid muscle repair after exercise. 

People with cystic fibrosis, Crohn’s disease or people with an inability to secrete bile may need to take Vitamin E supplements to avoid digestive problems. 

However, since it is fat-soluble, you must be careful of the intake since the excess will not leave your body through urine.

Health benefits of Vitamin B12 – 

Vitamin B12 has a vital role in the production of RBCs. Low levels can cause megaloblastic anemia. This in turn causes fatigue and weakness because you’re not getting enough oxygen. 

Vitamin B12 can help prevent major birth defects. A fetus’s brain and nervous system requires B12 and a deficiency may cause neural tube defects or premature birth or even miscarriage. 

It also helps prevent osteoporosis and supports bone health. Low vitamin B12 levels can lead to poor bone health according to some studies. 

Vitamin B12 can also reduce the risk of macular degeneration. As one ages, the eyesight becomes weak and Vitamin B12 can help prevent that to an extent. 

If you suffer from mood swings or depression, you may want to get blood work done and see if you have a Vitamin B12 deficiency. Vitamin B12 can tremendously improve your mood and synthesize serotonin. It can also give an energy boost, improve the health of your skin, hair and nails.  

A deficiency in Vitamin B12 can also cause memory loss in older adults. By upping the intake of Vitamin B12, memory related illnesses like dementia can be prevented or delayed. 

Unlike Vitamin E, Vitamin B12 is water-soluble and any excess is eliminated when you urinate. 

Since Vitamin B12 is usually present in non-vegetarian items, vegans and vegetarians may find it difficult to obtain it through their diet. Deficiencies can also be caused in older adults as they are unable to absorb the vitamin. This is where you may consider getting supplements. 

While Vitamin E is easy enough to get through your diet, you may still want to consider supplements as some can be applied topically as well. 

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