Hi i'm wondering if anyone in Australia is currently buying vegan methylcobalamin tablets. I have been looking in shops and online but I can't seem to find any that aren't flavoured or vegan.
I have found some overseas but I don't think I can ship them over without a prescription - which I don't have nor don't think I can get.
I was thinking the alternative is B12 shots but can you do them by yourself? do you have to go to the doctors?
Also if anyone loking at this knows of a good D3 tablet let me know =)
iherb.com will ship methylcobalamin to Oz no problem. Otherwise any pharmacy will sell liquid B12 ampules for self administration.... although they wouldn't sell me the needles. (i had to get them from the vet my sister works at lol)
iherb will sell it? i checked them out but the international shipping page said that to australia medicine that is not prescribed might be prohibited... so you're definitley sure they will allow me to have them? cause i don't want to spend money on something that i might not received....
I used to get it from there a few years back. Apparently as long as u dont buy more than 3 months worth its classified as personal use only. Maybe you should email them and ask. Otherwise Life Extension stocks it http://www.lef.org/search/?q=methylcobalamin. They have sneaky ways of getting around TGA regulations.
If you are not acutely low at the moment, and until you find a good source, here is an alternative solution.
The element that our bodies use in B12 is cobalt, and eating 2+ pounds of leafy green lettuce a day as well as nuts can help give your body the precursers to B12. Individuals with healthy digestive systems and who eat foods grown on cobalt enriched soils may be able to provide cobalt to their gut flora and in return, obtain b12 from gut flora.
And a story of natural hygienist vegans who solved their problems eating salads and nuts:
While we do produce our own B12, it occurs in the distal ileum, which is further along the digestive tract from where the site of absorption is.
Not all vegans are b12 deficient and not all those with b12 deficiency are vegan, and b12 issues may stem from three things. Foods need to be grown on cobalt rich soils, and our gut flora need to be healthy, and the intestines of the individual should be healthy as well.
Our bodies carry up to 1500 strains of bacteria that are healthy for us in minute amounts and with the more famous family being strep.
Our stomachs may contain helicobacter pylori and bfidobacteria to name a few. In the stomach and small intestine, some of our food is broken down by bacteria. Some of these bacteria may absorb the cobalt in our diets, and when they die, their b12 and other nutrients may be absorbed by our bodies at different points along the intestinal journey.
Our large intestines hold food materials, bacteria, and water for reabsorption. B12 is a water soluble vitamin, and may be reabsorbed via the large intestinal water absorption.
Peace, PKhttp://soilandhealth.org/02/0201hyglibcat/HlthUltd.pdf (Page 62) http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/891.html http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helicobacter_pylori http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/imagepages/19220.htm
My understanding was that although B12 is water soluble, it doesnt mean that it can passively diffuse through the wall of the large intestine, or the small intestine for that matter. In the small intestine it needs to bind to intrinsic factor to form a complex, which then passes through cubulins, which are B12 specific receptors.
The pdf was quite old, but interesting nonetheless. It definitely warrants some further digging :)
And further digging I am doing too. I personally am doing some ongoing research regarding b12.
The trigger that fascinates me is that not all vegans are b12 deficient, and some may actually have quite high levels. So I am trying to ask why is that?
If we can figure out what health criteria they meet, and or what they are doing right, we might be able to assist others. I really do not like supplementation with synthetic materials, and or trying to guesswork what is the right dosage. B12 and or cobalt in high amounts can also be toxic and or cause symptoms of malaise.
Now as you mentioned with intrinsic factor, there are some people who genetically do not produce and or produce enough of it, and may always have to supplement b12 via injections to bypass the mechanism.
My preliminary thoughts are regarding cows. In nature almost all animals need b12, and yet cows are vegans which do not supplement themselves. (We could argue the same for primates, but primates eat about 1-5% of their diet from animal products, and mainstream science assume animal products are the source of our b12.) Cows fed on cobalt depleted soils get sick, and cows fed on cobalt enriched soils are b12 healthy.
In humans, b12 deficiency tends to have a cause and be accompanied by other signs and symptoms. For example, one cause is pernicious anemia which can be caused by grain/wheat/gluten sensitivies leading to problems like celiac disease. Remove the grains, heal the symptoms, and b12 levels can return to normal.
While at any given time 40% of western populations might be b12 deficient, sometimes vegans do have the lowest levels. However, it is my hypothesis that the reason might lie in vegans trading animal products for grain and gluten containing products which might cause other illnesses.
I know the pdf is old, but I also like to look at past and present research. If there are ongoing patterns, science does not change after all, it is our perceptions and understandings that change, we see a pattern.
Did you read through this pdf in my original post? Some of the early hygienist were vegetarian and yet had some deficiencies. B12 understanding was in its infancy, and instead of looking for a pill to remedy their problem, they found the solution in food with eating 2 pounds or more of leafy greens a day and nuts (although I am not sure of the quantity of the nuts.)
And, of course, two vegan sources of cobalt are leafy greens and nuts!
I know I have more work to do here, but the research is promising.
I haven't read the earlier pdf yet, but i saved it to have a look when i get the time. It seems like quite a mystery, but you may be on the right track about vegans swapping animal products for foods that hamper absorption.
I also had another thought though not scientifically proven at the moment regarding the possible absorption via water in the large intestine.
People with with genetic intrinsic factor issues do not absorb and assimilate b12 properly, and thus they supplement via injections to bypass the mechanism.
In theory, it might be possible in some individuals that some b12 could be absorbed and assimilated via water absorption in the large intestine thus bypassing the intrinsic factor mechanism.
Just another thought. Peace, PK
wow! that is alot of information and words to take in. I quite like the information provided in the soilandhealth pdf. I'll read through it properly later. I am not sure if I am b12 deficient, but previusly when I was taking lower quality ones I felt improvments in my memory and bowel movements (not sure why the second one?) and as I am going back to studying (fitness) I want to ensure that I am at my peak performance. I too don't like using synthetic vitamins but as eating 2 + pounds of greens a day isn't something I can afford right now (even with my veggie garden - my lettuce and bokchoy is very young) I don't mind experimenting with the tablets. If I don't feel a difference, than I won't continue with them at the moment. but really thanks for the link to the pdf, I am sure it will become extremely useful!