Vitamin B12 Deficiency – Symptoms and Signs

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Here’s how you can tell if you are not consuming enough Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 is an essential nutrient that plays a vital role in many bodily functions. These functions include DNA synthesis, nervous system function, and red blood cell production. However, the body cannot produce vitamin B12, so it must be obtained through diet or supplements.

Vitamin B12 deficiency is a common nutritional deficiency, particularly in older adults and vegetarians. It can lead to serious health problems if left untreated. Watch out for these signs and symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency.

Fatigue and Weakness


Fatigue and weakness are the most common symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency. The body needs it to produce red blood cells, which carry oxygen to the body’s cells. Without enough vitamin B12, the body cannot make enough red blood cells, leading to fatigue and weakness.

Vitamin B12 is crucial to preventing anemia, so make sure you consume enough of it. If you’re experiencing chronic fatigue and weakness, consult with your doctor to see what the root cause of it may be. 

Neurological Symptoms

Memory Loss

Vitamin B12 plays a crucial role in the nervous system’s functioning, and a deficiency can cause various neurological symptoms, including:

  • Numbness or tingling in the hands and feet
  • Difficulty walking or balancing
  • Memory loss or confusion
  • Depression or anxiety
  • Vision loss

Digestive Problems

Digestive Problems

Vitamin B12 is essential for the production of stomach acid, which helps digest food and absorb nutrients. A deficiency can lead to digestive problems, including:

  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Weight loss

It’s common for a lot of vegetarians to experience a deficiency of vitamin B12. This is because it’s frequently found in meat products like milk, meat, and fish. If you lead a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle, it’s best to find a supplement to ensure you’re not suffering from vitamin B12 deficiency.  

Pale or Jaundiced Skin


A deficiency in vitamin B12 can cause a lack of red blood cells, leading to anemia. Anemia can cause pale or yellowish skin, known as jaundice.

Mouth Ulcers

Mouth Ulcer

Mouth ulcers are a common symptom of vitamin B12 deficiency. They can appear on the tongue or inside the mouth and can be painful and uncomfortable.

Changes in Mood

Change in Mood

Vitamin B12 is essential for the production of serotonin, a chemical that regulates mood. A deficiency can cause mood changes, including depression, anxiety, and irritability.

Bottom Line

Vitamin B12 deficiency is common and can lead to serious health problems if left untreated. If you experience any of the symptoms listed above, speak with your doctor about testing your vitamin B12 levels. The good news is that vitamin B12 deficiency is treatable with supplements or changes to your diet.