Since there are eight different B vitamins in all, ‘vitamin B’ actually refers to more than one vitamin. They are valued for their ability to aid in the conversion of other nutrients into energy, support a healthy metabolism, and support the growth of the fetus during pregnancy, as well as the nervous system, liver function, eye, and skin health. The most important form of vitamin B, however, is vitamin B12, which is required for the formation of DNA and red blood cells. Let’s find out some foods rich in vitamin B12.
Health Shots reached out to Deepti Lokeshappa, Msc Food Science and Nutrition, Senior Consultant-Clinical Nutritionist, Motherhood Hospital, Bengaluru, to find out the healthy sources of vitamin B12 to boost strength and stamina.
Why do you need vitamin B12?
Lokeshappa says, “Vitamin B12 is an essential nutrient which helps in keeping our blood and nerve cells healthy and it also helps make DNA, the genetic material in our cells. But unlike many other nutrients your body cannot make vitamin B12 on its own and thus, people opt for supplements to make up for it or any other lacking nutrients.”
While considering supplements, we often ignore the fact that optimizing your diet is the best way to ensure the availability of essential nutrients in our body. And when it comes to vitamin B12, nothing better than adding these below mentioned foods rich in vitamin B12.
Here are 7 vitamin B12 rich foods to add to your diet:
1. Milk and other dairy products
If you are not lactose intolerant, you can start by consuming dairy products. Milk, yoghurt, cheese, and other dairy products are excellent sources of protein as well as a number of vitamins, including vitamin B12. Dairy products can increase strength and energy levels while reducing muscle damage.
Also read: This is why B group vitamins are a boon for your brain health
According to Lokeshappa, “Eating eggs can guarantee that your body has access to both protein and B vitamins.” A hard-boiled egg has 0.6 micrograms of vitamin B12 in it. That amounts to 25 percent of your daily worth. The yolk is where most of the B12 is found. Additionally, eggs are also rich in healthy fat, saturated fat, iron, other vitamins, minerals, and carotenoids.
3. Chicken breast
In addition to being a fantastic source of lean protein, chicken also has vitamin B12 and niacin, both of which support healthy cholesterol levels in the body. It has no carbohydrates because it doesn’t include any sugar or starch. The vitamins and minerals in chicken breast can improve mood, bone health, muscle mass, appetite control, and sleep.
Also read: Why your body needs vitamin B12, an essential nutrient only found in animal foods
4. Breakfast cereals (fortified)
Even though meat and fish are excellent sources of vitamin B12, not everyone can eat them. For vegetarians, breakfast cereals are the best choice in such circumstances. The quality and brand of it will determine how useful it is for you.
As a readily available and frequently consumed seafood, tuna is rich in vitamin B12 and is a wonderful source of protein, vitamins, and minerals. This can aid in the production of new red blood cells and ward off the onset of anaemia.
Salmon fish is known for being rich in the concentrations of omega-3 fatty acids and it is also an excellent source of vitamin B12. Not only can it boost muscle building, it can also help reduce the risk of heart diseases and weight gain.
7. Non-dairy milk (fortified)
Non-dairy milk like soy, almond, and rice milk are not naturally rich in vitamin B12, but they are usually fortified which makes them a great option for vegans to get the essential nutrients. So, give them a space in your diet.