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Vitamin B12 deficiency warning: Optic neuropathy a sign of prolonged low B12 levels

VITAMIN B12 ensures the smooth running of the body's vital functions so B12 deficiency can have harmful effects. One alarming complication of prolonged B12 deficiency is optic optic neuropathy, which can show up in your vision. This Morning: Guest reveals symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency Vitamin B12 is an essential nutrient because it helps keep the body’s nerve and blood cells healthy and helps make DNA, the genetic material in all cells. Insufficient intake of B12 can therefore undermine these critical functions, causing a cascade of negative effects. Some of the most pronounced effects stem from the nerve damage caused by B12 deficiency. One telltale sign that vitamin B12 deficiency has damaged the nervous system is blurred or disturbed vision. According to research, this can occur when an untreated B12 deficiency results in nervous system damage to the optic nerve that leads to your eyes. The damage can disrupt the nervous signal that travels from your eye to your brain, impairing your vision - this condition is known as optic neuropathy. Although alarming, it is often reversible by supplementing with B12, studies suggest. READ MORE: Eight telltale signs you have low vitamin B12 levels - what to look for We will use your email address only for sending you newsletters. Please see our Privacy Notice for details of your data protection rights. Other B12 deficiency symptoms include: There are two primary causes of B12 deficiency - pernicious anaemia and dietary decisions. Pernicious anaemia is an autoimmune disease that prevents the body from making intrinsic factor (a protein made by the stomach and needed to absorb vitamin B12 in the intestine). The autoimmune disease is the leading cause of B12 deficiency in the UK. DON'T MISS Covid vaccine calculator: Check when you will get the Covid vaccine here [ADVICE] What are the symptoms of the new strain of Covid? Are they different? [TIPS] Long COVID update: Official NICE guidelines highlight 28 symptoms of post-COVID syndrome [INSIGHT] Those following a vegan or vegetarian diet are prone to B12 deficiency because vitamin B12 is found naturally in a wide variety of animal foods. Plant foods have no vitamin B12 unless they are fortified. According to the National Institutes of Health, you can get recommended amounts of vitamin B12 by eating a variety of foods including the following: "To find out if vitamin B12 has been added to a food product, check the product labels," advises the NIH. The treatment for vitamin B12 deficiency depends on what's causing the condition. Most people can be easily treated with injections or tablets to replace the missing vitamins. Vitamin B12 deficiency anaemia is usually treated with injections of vitamin B12. There are two types of vitamin B12 injections: "If your vitamin B12 deficiency is caused by a lack of the vitamin in your diet, you may be prescribed vitamin B12 tablets to take every day between meals," explains the NHS. According to the health body, people who find it difficult to get enough vitamin B12 in their diets, such as those following a vegan diet, may need vitamin B12 tablets for life.

Reference : Express.co.uk