Metformin And Risk For Vitamin B12 Deficiency
Metformin (brand names Glucophage, Glucophage XR, Fortamet, Riomet, Glumetza, and others) is a popular and highly effective oral diabetes drug used to help manage Type 2 diabetes. This drug works by lowering the amount of glucose made by the liver and by making the body’s cells more sensitive to insulin. Metformin also has some other beneficial effects in that it may help lower blood lipid, or fat, levels (cholesterol and triglycerides) and can, in some people, promote a small amount of weight loss. Metformin can be used with other diabetes pills and with insulin. Side effects of taking metformin are relatively rare, the most common being bloating, nausea, and diarrhea, all of which are temporary. Some people shouldn’t take metformin, including people with kidney disease, liver disease, or congestive heart failure, for example, because of an increased risk of a potentially fatal condition called lactic acidosis. In recent years, there’s been some concern over the risk of vitamin B12 deficiency in people who take metformin. Vitamin B12 (also known as cyanocobalamin or cobalamin) plays many important roles in the body, such as keeping your blood cells and nervous system in tip top shape. There’s also some evidence that vitamin B12 may help prevent heart disease and possibly even Alzheimer disease (the jury is still out on this one). This vitamin is found primarily in animal foods, such as beef, seafood, eggs, and dairy products, which is why some vegetarians are at risk for a B12 deficiency. Elderly people are often at risk for deficiency as well, due to problems with absorption from the gastrointestinal tract. Symptoms of B12 deficiency include certain types of anemia, neuropathy, memory loss, confusion, and even dementia. So, why would taking metformin possibly Continue reading >>
Vitamin B12 In Diabetics
9. Constipation alternating with diarrhea, vague abdominal pain 10. Increase in the level of Homocysteine which is a risk factor for heart disease. Low folic acid is the other contributory factor for raising Homocysteine level. 1. Anyone on a strict vegetarian diet, because vegetables are devoid of Vitamin B12. 3. Anyone on stomach medicines such as Prilosec, Prevacid, Protonix, Aciphex, Pepcid, Zantac, Tagamet etc. 4. Antibiotics can lower Vitamin B12 by interfering with the normal intestinal bacterial flora. 5. Anyone who has undergone stomach surgery. 6. Gastrointestinal disorders such as chronic pancreatitis, atrophic gastritis, small intestinal resection or bypass, gluten enteropathy, Crohn's disease and malignancy. How do I know if I'm low in Vitamin B12? Vitamin B12 deficiency often remains undiagnosed because physicians generally don't think of it as a possibility. For example, when a diabetic patient complains of tingling in their feet, physicians do all the work-up to diagnose diabetic peripheral neuropathy. They then start you on drug treatment without checking your Vitamin B12 level, even if you are on metformin. In reality, peripheral neuropathy in diabetic patients on metformin is often due to two factors:diabetes itself and vitamin B12 deficiency. Vitamin B 12 deficiency can be diagnosed by a blood test. Ablood level less than 400 pg/ml indicates Vitamin B12 deficiency. In my clinical experience, patients do much better when their Vitamin B12 level is close to1000 pg/ml. What are natural sources of Vitamin B12? Animal products are the main natural sources of Vitamin B12. Plant derived food is devoid ofVitamin B12. Good dietary sources include egg yolk, salmon, crabs, oysters, clams, sardines, liver, brain and kidney. Smaller amounts of Vitamin B12 are al Continue reading >>
Understanding Markers Of Blood Sugar Control | Empoweryourhealth.org
IS THIS FOR YOU? You’re doing everything right. You’ve decided to finally take control and to pay more attention to your diabetes. You’re checking your blood sugar often at home and at different times of the day. You’re paying close attention to your food choices and being careful on portion sizes. In fact, you’ve been doing so well you can’t wait to see your doctor to prove that your efforts have paid off! Your glucose levels are way down but, when you do see your doctor, you’re surprised (and a little shocked) to discover that your average control is not as good as you thought it was. Your doctor checked your hemoglobin A1c and is concerned that your average blood sugar may be running too high (or too low). How can that be? Your blood sugars at home have been on target for the last several months. You and your doctor confirm your glucose meter is working properly. What can be a possible explanation for this? It’s time to learn about some markers of blood sugar control! HEMOGLOBIN A1C When sugar (glucose) is higher than it should be in blood, it attaches to proteins in the body. This is used as a marker or indicator of blood sugar control. HERES' HOW IT WORKS : Many different types of cells are found in blood, among them are the red blood cells. They are named “red” blood cells because they contain a protein named hemoglobin [HEE-mo-glo-bin], which gives them the color red. Hemoglobin is the protein responsible for getting oxygen to the body’s tissues. Because glucose/sugar can easily enter the red blood cells, when blood sugar levels increase, sugar molecules enter the red blood cells and attach to hemoglobin. The higher your blood sugar, the more sugar will enter the red blood cells and will attach to the hemoglobin. Glucose attaches to hemoglob Continue reading >>
Best Vitamins For Diabetics
Eating a varied diet rich in natural sources of vitamins is a good idea for diabetics. Nutritional support is critical for diabetics because diabetes tends to drain nutrients. When levels of glucose are high in the blood, the body tries to ‘wash’ the excess sugar out. This is why diabetics need to use the washroom frequently. Unfortunately, diabetics also lose nutrients via their urine. Research studies show that diabetics are repeatedly found to be deficient in important water-soluble vitamins and minerals. What’s more, the loss of these vitamins worsens the body’s ability to manage blood sugar, creating a vicious cycle. Combining a healthy diabetes diet plan and a daily exercise routine with the best vitamin supplements for diabetics goes a long way in achieving stable blood sugar levels. What Vitamins Are Diabetics Deficient In? The term vitamin is short for “Vital Amino Acid”. This means that these are vital for the proper functioning of hundreds of chemical processes in the body which the body cannot manage by itself. Proper blood sugar control is one such function for which vitamins are critical. There are 13 essential vitamins that the human body requires and they must be obtained from an external source — through food and/or supplements. Diabetics need two kinds of vitamins: Water Soluble – Vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, C, Biotin, and Folate are water-soluble and cannot be stored in the body for longer periods of time. Diabetics are often deficient in these vitamins since they pass greater amounts of urine daily. As their body tries to get rid of extra sugar, diabetics lose more water-soluble vitamins than most others. That’s why diabetics need to to get these vitamins daily in doses larger than what normal people need. Luckily, you can get all Continue reading >>
Metformin And Risk Of Vitamin B12 Deficiency
Diabetes Forum The Global Diabetes Community Find support, ask questions and share your experiences. Join the community Metformin and Risk of Vitamin B12 Deficiency Hello i have had Diabetes since 1999 --of course i was then on the Norm metformin but the diabetic nurse said after 7 years it's time to go on insulin ?? i was controlling my diabetes ok but she said it was time to go on insulin and after a few months i came off the metformin as i was controlling my sugar better with the slow release insulin the metformin well what can i say i had had diarrhoea for years and found out that was the cause so i stopped taking metformin and just used the insulin. the doctor agreed. i now have changed Doctors as my old doctor retired I went to see the Doctor about getting off the insulin and he prescribed the 1000mg metformin releasing tablet which is helping me reduce my insulin but at what cost. i thought i was not having any side effects well no Diarrhoea. I have been having headaches, always tired, and the worse one---Life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis , in which you may have trouble breathing, your tongue swells and/or throat closes up, i have had to got hospital 7 times in england and once in tenerife for injections to make me breathe Question Can the Metformin SR cause my B12 Deficiency Have you considered changing your diet in order to reduce the need for medication? Carbohydrates are the main culprits in raising blood glucose levels - all carbs convert to glucose once inside the system. Starchy ones are the worst, plus any that are made with flour. Bread, potatoes, rice, pasta, breakfast cereals etc. Art Of Flowers I reversed my Type 2 Well-Known Member Metformin can cause vitamin B12 deficiency which gives rise to neuropathy symptoms. If you eat a lo Continue reading >>
Diabetes And B12: What You Need To Know
Vitamin B12 is necessary for a healthy nervous system and healthy blood cells. The best way to get vitamin B12 is through your diet. This important vitamin is found in meat, fish, poultry, and dairy products. If you don’t eat enough of these foods, it could leave you with a deficiency. Consuming enough vitamin B12 isn’t the only problem. Your body also needs to be able to absorb it efficiently. Some medications like Pepcid AC, Prevacid, Prilosec, and Zantac, as well as others used to treat acid reflux, peptic ulcer disease, and infection, may make it harder for your body to absorb B12. Another medication that may interfere with B12 absorption is metformin, a common type 2 diabetes treatment. Simply having diabetes may make you more prone to B12 deficiency. A 2009 study found that 22 percent of people with type 2 diabetes were low in B12. Read on to learn the symptoms of B12 deficiency, what it could mean for your overall health, and what you can do about it. Symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency may be mild at first, and not always obvious. If you’re slightly low on B12, you may not have any symptoms at all. Some of the more common early symptoms are: tiredness weakness loss of appetite weight loss constipation It may be easy to dismiss these as minor complaints, but over time, insufficient B12 can lead to bigger problems. Very low levels of B12 can result in serious complications. One of these is called pernicious anemia. Anemia means you don’t have enough healthy red blood cells. This deprives your cells of much-needed oxygen. According to a study in the Journal of Oral Pathology Medicine, less than 20 percent of those with a B12 deficiency experience pernicious anemia. Symptoms of anemia include: fatigue pale skin chest pain dizziness headache You may even lose Continue reading >>
Vitamin B12 Deficiency And Type 2 Diabetes: Are You At Risk?
Vitamin B12, also known as “cobalamin,” is a water-soluble essential nutrient required in our diet. When a nutrient is essential, it means the body cannot produce it internally so it must come from food we eat or supplemental form. If you have type 2 diabetes, you could be at higher risk of a vitamin B12 deficiency. Vitamin B12 supports a healthy nervous system, brain and red blood cells and is needed only in very small amounts (2.4 mcg/day). Vitamin B12 is found only in meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy, which is why vegetarians and especially vegans are at higher risk for deficiency and should take a dietary supplement that includes B12. While there is no set upper limit for B12, it is useless to supplement if you do not have a deficiency. Blood levels <200 pg/mL are generally considered deficient while >400 pg/mL are sufficient. Between this range, you may want to consider supplementation. Dosing will vary depending on level of deficiency, but is often 1-2 mg daily. In some cases mega-dose injections every month are required, depending on how the person responds to supplementation or if there is a severe deficiency. What does Vitamin B12 do? Vitamin B12 plays a number of very important roles in our bodies: It is necessary for the metabolism of amino acids and fatty acids It is required for DNA synthesis It helps synthesize neurotransmitters (ie serotonin and dopamine) It is essential for cardiovascular function Vitamin B12 Deficiency and Type 2 Diabetes It’s estimated that 22% of people with type 2 diabetes have Vitamin B12 deficiency, which is much higher than the general population. Getting enough Vitamin B12 in your diet through the food you eat is only one piece of the picture. After it has been ingested, the B12 then needs to be absorbed from the gut in Continue reading >>
Is It Safe To Take Supplements If You Have Diabetes?
You will find supplements for anything and everything these days. Even when you do not suffer from an ailment, supplements are suggested to keep you healthy and ailment-free. According to CDC, use of supplements is common among US adult population – over 50% adults used supplements during 2003-2006, with multivitamins/multiminerals being the most commonly used. So when you are a diabetic, especially if you have prediabetes and type-2 diabetes, you may find yourself confronting a large number of options for supplements that claim to support, reduce and even cure your diabetes. Diabetes is quite a frustrating disorder and you may find yourself tempted to try out these supplements one after another. But is it really safe to take supplements when you are a diabetic? Let us find out. But before that you need to understand what exactly supplements are. Defining Supplements As the name suggests, a supplement is anything that adds on to something. A dietary supplement is therefore something that one takes in addition to one’s diet to get proper nutrition. US Congress in the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act defines dietary supplements as having the following characteristics: It is a product that is intended to supplement the diet; It contains one or more dietary ingredients (including vitamins, minerals, herbs and other botanicals, amino acids, and other substances) or their constituents; It is intended to be taken by mouth as a pill, capsule, tablet, or liquid; It is not represented for use as a conventional food or as sole item of a mean or a diet; and, It is labeled on the front panel as being a dietary supplement. Now let us look at some general benefits and risks of taking supplements. We will discuss these in context of diabetes later in the article. Benefit Continue reading >>
Can Diabetics Take B12?
The hallmark symptom of diabetes is chronically high glucose levels in the blood. If you have diabetes, you must control and constantly monitor your glucose levels. Since diabetes puts you at risk for a deficiency of vitamin B12, you also need regular blood tests to monitor your B12 blood level. If you are deficient, your doctor might recommend certain steps to increase your B12 levels because maintenance of proper B12 levels is vital to your health. Vitamin B12 Vitamin B12 is important for the proper functioning of nerve cells and blood cells. It also plays an integral part in the synthesis of DNA and promotes the ability of your digestive system to maintain steady glucose blood levels. You get vitamin B12 naturally in foods such as beef, fish, milk, eggs, meats and poultry. Some breakfast cereals are fortified with vitamin B12 during the manufacturing process. Effects of Deficiency If you are deficient in vitamin B12, you may experience fatigue, weakness, constipation, loss of weight, loss of appetite or megaloblastic anemia, a condition characterized by enlarged red blood cells. You also might incur nerve damage that shows as numbness or tingling in your hands and feet. This damage may become permanent if you don't address the B12 deficiency. Other deficiency symptoms include memory lapses, depression, confusion, difficulty balancing and a sore mouth or tongue. Diabetes and B12 Vitamin B12 taken orally must form a complex with a stomach protein called intrinsic factor before it can enter the bloodstream, where it exerts its beneficial biological effects. The B12-intrinsic factor complex enters the bloodstream from the small intestine. If you have type 1 diabetes, you may have a B12 deficiency called pernicious anemia, because your immune system attacks the intrinsic Continue reading >>
B12 And Blood Sugar Control?
Has anyone ever tried b12 injections for control? I had a perfect day today and (despite pushing the limits) never had any hypos (opposite of my day yday) and never went over 115. I took a b12 injection for the first time in 12 days yesterday. I take them b/c I was deficient back in FEb and started having sig neuropathy because of it. If I go more than 10-12 days without it, the neuropathy comes back. I saw something in an article at some point saying it's a natural alternative to controlling levels. It may have been a key player for me today. We were out and about without food for me to eat so I went 3-4 hours between meals and pushed the envelope with sushi and coke for supper to see just what I could see. Never got over 115, never got below 90 all day. I sure hope it was the b12! I felt great all day!!! D.D. Family Getting much harder to control It would be great but I take b-12 and I havent seen a difference in bs control but it might work for you as YMMV. First article I've found with some science behind it... it could be the difference in administration and levels. I have off the charts levels b/c I inject. I doubt levels would be so high with a pill or sublingual. Plus, if you have any gut issues, you wouldn't likely absorb oral b12 and would need the injection. Hmmmm... just thinking out loud. Wish this had been thoroughly studied! Basically I'm learning the b vitamins, most importantly 12, play a vital role in the breakdown of carbs. This is what I found on livestrong :"Vitamin B12 and other B complex vitamins are important for metabolizing carbohydrates, proteins and fats into glucose that can be utilized by the body. B complex vitamins help the body produce glucose, which is the body's main source of energy from consumed foods." Read more: I'm gathering that Continue reading >>
Vitamins And Minerals
Tweet Depending on the type of treatment regimen you use to control your diabetes, there are some vitamins and minerals that may be beneficial for your condition. Before adding any vitamins or adding dietary supplements to your daily diet, discuss these changes with your healthcare team and doctor to ensure they are safe alongside any prescribed medication you're on. ALA and GLA ALA (alpha-lipoic acid) is a versatile and potent antioxidant, and may function to help diabetic neuropathy and reduce pain from free-radical damage. Also, some studies link ALA to decreased insulin resistance and thus the control of blood sugar. GLA (gamma-lipoic acid) is another naturally occurring antioxidant that is present in evening primrose oil, borage oil and blackcurrant seed oil. GLA may improve the function of nerves damaged by diabetic neuropathy. Biotin Biotin works in synergy with insulin in the body, and independently increases the activity of the enzyme glucokinase. Glucokinase is responsible for the first step of glucose utilisation, and is therefore an essential component of normal bodily functioning. Glucokinase occurs only in the liver, and in sufferers from diabetes its concentration may be extremely low. Supplements of biotin may have a significant effect on glucose levels for both type 1 and type 2 diabetics. Carnitine (L-Carnitine, Acetyl L-Carnitine) Carnitine is required by the body in order to correctly use body fat in the production of energy. It is naturally occurring and derives from hydrophilic amino acids. Diabetics who try carnitine generally respond well, and high levels of fat in the bloodstream (cholesterol and triglycerides) may fall fast. Carnitine helps to break down fatty acids in the body and binds acyl residues. For these reasons, it may be useful to pre Continue reading >>
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Vitamin Deficiencies In People With Diabetes: The Supplements You Need
As an orthopedic surgeon, I have many patients with diabetes who tell me, “I can’t have surgery because I won’t heal.” That is certainly not the case, however. Diabetes does affect the small blood vessels and the function of immune cells when blood sugar is high, but with proper nutrition and blood sugar management, people with diabetes are very safe to undergo knee replacements, abdominal surgery, and many elective procedures. It is critical, of course, that people with diabetes who undergo elective or traumatic surgery work closely with their doctor to manage their blood sugar, but supplementation is also a vital part of recovery. Diabetes frequently causes nutritional deficiencies, often initiated by changes in diet or medications. As a result, people with diabetes must use supplements. Helping my patients identify their nutritional deficiencies and educating them on the importance of essential vitamins has made an overwhelming difference in their recovery from surgery and their overall daily health. The following essential vitamins are often deficient in people with diabetes. Vitamin B12 Vitamin B12 is bound to protein in food. The activity of hydrochloric acid and gastric protease in the stomach releases vitamin B12 from its protein. Once it is released, vitamin B12 begins to work quickly. It is important for the formation of red blood cells, neurological function, and DNA synthesis. It also supports the digestive system in keeping glucose levels stable. A simple blood test can determine the level of B12 in the body. Adults who have a value below 170 to 250 pg/mL are considered deficient in the vitamin. An elevated blood homocysteine level or elevated methylmalconic acid level may also suggest a B12 deficiency. Symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency are megalob Continue reading >>
7 Vitamins That Help Control Blood Sugar
Vitamin deficiencies are quite common among diabetics. Given the importance of vitamins to cellular processes especially glucose metabolism and energy production in cells, low levels of certain vitamins may impair glucose utilization and lead to poor blood sugar control. This article identifies and discusses the vitamins that are most important to glycemic control and diabetes complications. The B vitamins are especially important to glucose metabolism. They usually serve as cofactors in cellular reactions utilizing glucose. Therefore, they have been extensively studied to determine their benefits for controlling blood sugar levels. Because the B vitamins are water soluble, they are easily excreted from the body along with urine. This is especially important for diabetics as they easily develop deficiencies of the B vitamins. Vitamin B1 or thiamine is a coenzyme in the metabolism of keto sugars. It is also important for the breakdown of pyruvic acid, a product released during glucose metabolism. Therefore, vitamin B1 can help improve how cells utilize glucose. This can lead to better control of blood sugar levels. However, available studies do not always agree on the importance of vitamin B1 supplementation for diabetics. Clinical data show that patients with Type 1 diabetes usually have low vitamin B1 levels and can, therefore, benefit from vitamin B1 supplements. On the other hand, Type 2 diabetes patients usually have normal blood levels of vitamin B1. However, one study demonstrated that although diabetics have normal levels of this vitamin, its transportation across tissues is impaired. Therefore, even normal levels of the vitamin may not be sufficient to effectively control blood glucose levels in diabetics. Vitamin B1 supplementation has been proven to prevent an Continue reading >>
Can Vitamin B-12 Deficiency Cause Hypoglycemia?
Can Vitamin B-12 Deficiency Cause Hypoglycemia? Esther Kinuthia is a registered nurse with extensive experience in health and wellness. She holds a B.S. in nursing, B.A in psychology and has worked for more than ten years in the health-care field. She enjoys writing articles on a variety of topics for the Internet. Her work has been published in various websites. Woman with headache holding her headPhoto Credit: jakubzak/iStock/Getty Images Vitamin B-12 is necessary for metabolism, red blood cell production and maintaining healthy nerve cells. Vitamin B-12 is naturally found in animal foods such as red meat, fish, eggs and milk. Hypoglycemia is low blood glucose levels in the blood. Vitamin B-12 and other B vitamins help convert consumed foods into glucose that can be utilized by the body. Vitamin B-12 helps metabolize carbohydrates, proteins and fats into glucose. Glucose is the body's main source of energy. Vitamin B-12 deficiency can therefore cause low glucose levels. One of the main symptoms of hypoglcemia is fatigue and vitamin B-12 supplements are widely used to treat severe fatigue. The supplements increase energy by helping the body convert food into glucose. Vitamin B-12 deficiency also causes anemia and neurological damages. Patients with hypoglycemia experience symptoms such as headache, irritability, confusion, sweating, hunger, trembling, double vision, blurry vision, fatigue, rapid heart rate, malaise, nervousness, convulsions and seizures, according to MayoClinic.com. Untreated hypoglycemia can lead to fainting and coma. Severe hypoglycemia is a medical emergency that may lead to seizures and permanent damage to the brain and nervous system. Patients at risk for hypoglycemia especially diabetics familiarize themselves with symptoms of hypoglycemia so th Continue reading >>
Why Vitamin B12 Is Important In Diabetes
How does the Vitamin B Family Work? Vitamin B Complex is a combination of eight B vitamins – B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B9 and B12. The B family of vitamins plays a variety of critical roles in our body, including converting the food we eat into energy. Health researchers and experts have found a deep connection, especially between Vitamin b12 and diabetes. In addition to this, research has shown that several drugs commonly prescribed by doctors to diabetics begin to cause depletion of the Vitamin B family from the human body. This process is called ‘drug induced nutrient depletion’ and is often the reason behind drug side effects. Folic Acid or Vitamin B9 and Vitamin B12 are easily depleted by daily use of anti-diabetic medication, making it all the more important for diabetics to put back these vitamins. Symptoms of Vitamin B12 Deficiency Vitamin B12 deficiency can cause potentially severe and sometimes irreversible damage to the nervous system. A severe health complication of vitamin B12 deficiency is pernicious anemia, the inability of the body to produce healthy red cells. Without sufficient red cells, the body does not get enough oxygen to function properly. If the levels go only slightly below normal, symptoms like: fatigue lethargy poor memory depression headaches loss of appetite weight loss constipation pale skin and breathlessness Initially, you may disregard these symptoms as part of your underlying diabetic condition. But over time, the deficiency may become more severe and may cause irreparable damage to your body. What Does Research Say about Vitamin B12? Diabetics generally carry the risk of a vitamin B12 deficiency. A study found that as many as 22% of diabetics are deficient in vitamin B12. Another study that tracked 785 women after delivery found t Continue reading >>