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Vitamin B12

Vitamin B is a group of bioactives that are water-soluble:
• Thiamine – B1
• Riboflavin – B2
• Niacin – B3
• Pantothenic acid – B5
• Pyridoxine – B6
• Biotin - B8
• Folate – B9
• Cobalamin – B12

Very low B12 intakes can cause anemia and nervous system damage. The only reliable vegan sources of B12 are foods fortified with B12 (including some plant milks, some soy products and some breakfast cereals) and B12 supplements. Vitamin B12, whether in supplements, fortified foods, or animal products, comes from micro-organisms. Vegans and vegetarians should consume enough B12 to avoid anemia and nervous system damage, but many do but might not get enough to minimize potential risk of heart disease or pregnancy complications.

Since most B-vitamins are combined in the same food sources (grains, meat and fish), they easily interact and support each other’s function. These vitamins mainly function as co-enzymes in a variety of metabolic and biochemical reactions. B vitamins are essential for:
• Maintaining the energy metabolism Cardiac function
• Proper growth and development
• Maintenance of cells and organs

Cobalamin – B12

Cobalamin is required for proper red blood cell formation, neurological function, and DNA synthesis. It also functions as a co-factor in the homocysteine metabolism and is key in the haemoglobin synthesis. EFSA has acknowledged the following beneficial effects as a basis for health claims:
• Cobalamin - Vitamin B12 contributes to normal neurological and psychological functions
• Cobalamin - Vitamin B12 contributes to normal homocysteine metabolism
• Cobalamin - Vitamin B12 can contribute to the reduction of tiredness and fatigue.

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