General Question

peedub's avatar

Vitamin B12 injections?

Asked by peedub (8682points) April 23rd, 2008

Do they really boost one’s energy?
I’ve read some articles, but don’t know anyone who’s tried them.

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11 Answers

gailcalled's avatar

My experience, with my mother in her 90s, that it is applicable for some older people. I don’t know anything about trying them if you are young.

I do take a daily Vit. B comlex, on med. advice, which is supposed to pep one up.

nikipedia's avatar

I’ve never heard that, but I bet it depends a lot on your diet. When I stopped eating meat I got really anemic and fatigued and as soon as I started taking a B complex vitamin I felt much, much better. If I forget it for a few days I start getting crappy again. So I’m guessing if your levels are already normal it would have a pretty minimal effect.

I tried my usual google scholar search and only came up with some articles about bond energies and membrane traffic. It would be a pretty big stretch to try to infer anything useful about diet from those.

wildflower's avatar

Haven’t tried them but apparently they can work. My dad got them from his doc when he stopped drinking (and was somewhat under nurished). Apparently it increases your energy and apetite.

soundedfury's avatar

It shouldn’t really do anything unless you’re suffering from a deficiency. The body can only store a set amount of B12, so if you were getting enough B12 to begin with and then got an injection, it would simply pass through into your urine.

However, if you were suffering from a B12 deficiency, it would certainly boost your energy. B12 deficiency results in lethargy and fatigue, among other things.

gailcalled's avatar

@Sound: “B12 deficiency results in lethargy and fatigue, among other things.” Those are among the many symptoms of aging, of course, and can be caused by Senile Dementia, general malnourishment, onset of Alzheimer’s and just-plain getting old.

Docs. who deal w. gerontological issues are usually the ones who deal with this issue.

soundedfury's avatar

@gail – They are also the symptoms of many other, non-aging related illnesses as well. I wasn’t suggesting that if someone is tired and lethargic that they have a B12 deficiency, I was merely giving a plausible reason for B12 to cause someone to be more energetic.

gailcalled's avatar

@Sound; My 93 yr old mother is lethargic and fatigued, but her Doctor said that she was well past any benefits that the shot could provide. So my experience has been with the elderly crowd only.

Are B12 shots common for younger people? I had a case of the droops last year and my doc. simply suggested the B complex supplement. But I had found several lyme ticks embedded and have had some vague fibromyalgia, insomnia, chronic fatigue symptoms….so we were throwing darts…

soundedfury's avatar

No, it’s not common, and generally only used for those who have had an extended deficiency – and then only for a limited time.

gooch's avatar

older people get the injections because the oral version is less absorbed by their aging digestive system. The injections are more easily absorbed. Younger people can absorb the vitamin easily through oral supplements so there is no need to take the more expensive injection.

shilolo's avatar

In general, B12 shots do NOT have any benefits, as has been stated above. Except for the rare circumstances where someone has a documented B12 deficiency (such as due to pernicious anemia, malabsorption or D. latum infection), the best one can hope for is a placebo effect from these shots. Since they are essentially harmless, many doctors acquiesce when these shots are “requested”, although in truth there are few sound medical reasons for providing a B12 shot (unless your name is Rafael Palmeira…).

LunaFemme's avatar

I’ve done the B-complex shot before & found it beneficial. My doctor told me I wasn’t deficient so it shouldn’t make a difference but was willing to give it to me if I found it helpful. So, I don’t know if it was a placebo affect or not but don’t really care. I’m all for feeling good.

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