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Vitamin B12 helps the body in primary ways, however some people struggle to absorb the vitamin due to an underlying condition called pernicious anemia.
Most people can get vitamin B12 from a varied diet that includes animal products. However, people who eat a vegetarian diet can get vitamin B12 from fortified foods or nutritional supplements.
One of the lesser known symptoms that should be watched is the appearance of white spots on a person’s forearm, and it can occur as a result of the absence of melatonin in the area, according to Thyroid Patient Advocacy.
Melatonin is a hormone that regulates a person’s sleep and wake pattern and has been shown to be linked to vitamin B12 intake.
The TPA warns: “These often occur on the outside of the forearm but may occur elsewhere. The longer these spots, the more white they are. With time, the spots become very dry and scaly.”
Other symptoms may include:
Feeling very tired.
Shortness of breath even after a little exercise.
• Heart palpitations.
Lack of appetite.
Inflammation of the mouth and tongue.
For most people, it should be easy to prevent a vitamin B12 deficiency simply by making sure you get enough of the vitamin in your diet.
Experts say adults between the ages of 19 and 64 need about 1.5 micrograms (mg) a day of vitamin B12, and unless you have pernicious anemia, you should be able to get it through your diet.