Can Vitamin B12 Be Taken On An Empty Stomach?

Can Vitamin B12 Be Taken On An Empty Stomach?

Vitamin B12 is best taken on an empty stomach. It is better to avoid taking B-12 with certain foods. Food may interfere with B-12 absorption, leading to the intake of a much smaller quantity of the overall dose. Other vitamins are best taken with foods, for example, vitamin C which on empty stomach cause nausea or acid sensitivity. Among vitamins, B-12 is an exceptional one.

How Is Vitamin B12 Absorbed In An Empty Stomach?

In food products like animal meat, vitamin B-12 generally exists with protein. When it reaches the stomach, pepsin and acid pH breaks these proteins and release B-12 in free form. This free B-12 again binds to haptocorrin R-protein, which is secreted by salivary glands and parietal cells in the stomach. In the duodenum, the less pH causes the pancreatic proteases to degrade the haptocorrin -vitamin B12 complex and release. It again binds tightly to intrinsic factor produced by parietal cells.

In the mucosal cells of the distal ileum, the vitamin B12-Intrinsic Factor complex is recognized by special receptors. Vitamin B12 then enters the blood bound to another binding protein, transcobalamin, the complex is known as holo-transcobalamin. The majority of vitamin B12 in blood is bound to haptocorrin and only a minor proportion is bound to transcobalamin. Holotranscobalamin is the biologically active fraction of vitamin B12 in the blood as it is in only this form that vitamin B12 is delivered to all the cells of the body. Vitamin B12 absorbed in the intestine subsequently gets transported to the liver via the portal system. There is extensive enterohepatic circulation of vitamin B12 and B12 is transported from the liver, via the bile duct, to the duodenum.

Can Vitamin B12 High Dose Kills?

According to some research taking too much vitamin B-12 can lead to side effects. It says that high dose of B12 may reduce the effectiveness of certain antibiotics, for instances, tetracycline, a drug used to treat respiratory, urinary tract and skin infections. However, there is no potential evidence or resource about the deleterious effect of an overdose of B-12. Because B-12 is a water-soluble vitamin and it is excreted in the urine when consumed in excess, it’s difficult to overdose on this essential nutrient.

Vitamin B12 Drug Interactions

Numerous drugs, such as anticonvulsants, diabetes medications, stomach acid reducers and chemotherapy drugs may deplete vitamin B12 levels in your body. The University of Maryland Medical Center says the following medications may interact with B12 in your body:

  • Proton pump inhibitors
  • Metformin
  • H2 blockers
  • Bile acid sequestrants
  • Colchicine
  • Chemotherapy medications
  • Anti-seizure medications
  • Tetracycline
  • Long-term antibiotics

Mayo Clinic Says The Following Medications May Also Interact With B12 In Your Body:

  • ACE Inhibitors
  • Bone loss medications
  • Cancer medications
  • Gout medications
  • High blood pressure medicines
  • Nervous system medications
  • Alcohol
  • Aspirin
  • Birth control pills
  • Nicotine
  • Nitric oxide
  • Stimulants
  • Heart medications

Possible Side Effects of Vitamin B12 Tablets

It is always necessary to check with physicians first, especially if deficient patients have certain pre-existing health conditions like Leber’s disease before taking B12 supplements of any kind. In healthy individuals, excess vitamin B12 likely won’t cause problems. However, the studies say if deficient patients have eye disease like Leber’s disease, B12 supplements can seriously damage the optic nerve.

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