Vitamin B12 - Is it worth a shot?

Skin aging comes from two main factors, the inside, (chronological or intrinsic), and the outside (extrinsic). Our outer appearance reflects our inner wellbeing. We all look to the next cream or serum to bring about a youthful glow, but if the balance of our vitamin and mineral intake is out of kilter, no amount of cream will help us.

Vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, pro and pre biotics and essential fatty acids all play an important role in maintaining healthy skin. Star players on the nutrition team to keep us healthy on the inside and the outside are the B Vitamins, Vitamins A, C, D, and E, Zinc, Lutein, Magnesium, Manganese, and Lycopene to name a few. It is always important to take nutrients in the correct combinations in order to receive the optimum benefits.
The B Vitamins are a complex and busy group and offer a wealth of benefits for skin internally and externally. Even though the B group Vitamins are found in many foods, they are water soluble and delicate. They are easily destroyed, particularly by alcohol, food processing and cooking.
There are 8 types of Vitamin B
1. Thiamin or B1 – helps to convert glucose into energy and has a role in nerve function. Found in wholemeal grains, sesame seeds, wheatgerm and pork
2. Riboflavin or B2 – primarily involved in energy production and helps vision and skin health. Found in milk, yoghurt, egg white, meat and leafy greens.
3. Niacin or B3 – essential for the body to convert carbohydrates, fat and alcohol into energy. It also helps to maintain skin health and supports the nervous and digestive systems. Found in meat, fish, poultry, eggs, nuts and mushrooms.
4. Pantothenic Acid or B5 – needed to metabolise carbohydrates, proteins, fats and alcohol as well as produce red blood cells and steroid hormones. Found in liver, meat, yeast, peanuts and legumes.
5. Pyridoxine or B6 – required for protein and carbohydrate metabolism, the formulation of red blood cells and certain brain chemicals. It influences the brain processes and development, immune function and steroid hormone activity. Found in legumes, leafy green vegetable, fish, shellfish and nuts,
6. Biotin or B7 – needed for energy metabolism, fat synthesis, amino acid metabolism and glycogen synthesis. Found in cauliflower, egg yolks, peanuts, liver, yeast and mushrooms.
7. Folic Acid or B9 – assists with forming red blood cells, which carry oxygen around the body. It helps the development of the foetal nervous system, as well as DNA synthesis and cell growth. Found in citrus fruit, liver, yeast, peanuts, seeds and cereals.
8. Cyanocobalamin or B12 – helps to produce and maintain the myelin sheath surrounding nerve cells, mental ability, red blood cell formation and the breaking down of some fatty acids and amino acids to produce energy. Found in liver, meat, egg yolks and almost anything of animal origin.

Another great way for a lot of people to receive their B12 is to have an injection once a month. Many people don’t understand why they are deficient in B12 if they are eating enough of the foods containing this vitamin. A huge part of the problem is that as we age there can be a problem of poor absorption. Other contributing factors such as toxins in the environment, cigarette smoking, a vegan diet and excessive alcohol consumption can all play a part in depleting our B12 supply. Food or oral B12 supplements often don’t work because of the absorption problem. The body cannot release enough B12 from the stomach into the bloodstream. This is why B12 injections let you skip the absorption issues allowing the B12 to enter directly into the bloodstream. The injection can be delivered into the muscle of the arm or into the bottom. The Vitamin B12 injection ensures your body receives the full dose of the vitamin. Whatever the body does not use it is excreted in the urine which may initially be a pink colour.
Combining dietary and topical (skincare products) nutrition for both the health of the skin and the body functioning is especially important for skin hydration and health. Consuming a diet rich in colourful fruits and vegetables, protein, good fats and carbohydrates every day is vitally important for good health internally and externally. When a clean and balanced diet is not possible an option is to include vitamin injections, infusions and oral supplements. Always be advised by a respected health practitioner for what is best for you as an individual. Skin Inspiration offer Vitamin B12 injections by our resident medical professional. Call us for bookings.