The importance of vitamin B12 for individuals choosing plant-based diets’, European Journal of Nutrition

Niklewicz, Ali, Smith, David A., Smith, Alison, Holzer, Andre, Klein, Andrew, McCaddon, Andrew, Molloy, Anne M., Wolffenbuttel, Bruce H.R., Nexo, Ebba, McNulty, Helene, Refsum, Helga, Gueant, Jean-Louis, Dib, Marie-Joe, Ward, Mary, Murphy, Michelle, Green, Ralph, Ahmadi, Kourosh R., Hanniba, Luciana, Warren, Martin J. and Owen, Julian (2022) The importance of vitamin B12 for individuals choosing plant-based diets’, European Journal of Nutrition. European Journal of Nutrition, 62. pp. 1551-1559. ISSN 1436-6215

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Vitamin B12 is an essential nutrient that is not made by plants; consequently, unfortified plant-based foods are not a reliable supply. Recent estimates suggest high rates of vitamin B12 deficiency among the vegetarian and vegan populations, particularly in pregnant women or women of child-bearing age who, for ethical and health reasons, are shifting towards higher consumption of plant-based foods in ever-increasing numbers. Vitamin B12 plays crucial metabolic roles across the life-course and in particular during pregnancy and in early development (first 1000 days of life). Evidence now implicates vitamin B12 deficiency with increased risk to a range of neuro, vascular, immune, and inflammatory disorders. However, the current UK recommended nutrient intake for vitamin B12 does not adequately consider the vitamin B12 deficit for those choosing a plant-based diet, including vegetarianism and in particular veganism, representing a hidden hunger. We provide a cautionary note on the importance of preventing vitamin B12 deficits for those individuals choosing a plant-based diet and the health professionals advising them.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Vitamin B12 Plant-based diets Public health Planetary health Dietary recommendations Vegetarian and vegan populations Women of child-bearing age Pregnancy
Divisions: Social and Life Sciences
Depositing User: Hayley Dennis
Date Deposited: 20 Oct 2023 08:41
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2023 08:41

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