Friday, October 22, 2010


Geoff and I met a couple of friends for a beer and a film on Tuesday and the conversation turned to diet. Rodger contended that you can cure virtually anything with a good diet and he's been eating strictly vegetarian.  He says that since all the cells in our bodies renew themselves every seven years, we can totally rebuild sick bodies into healthy ones by eating healthy foods. That sounds hopeful, right?  

Then Lucille said that cutting out meat can be dangerous because not getting enough vitamin B12 is dangerous and you can only get it from animal sources.  Rodger replied that he's not against meat, but that even in Mexico, a lot of the meat is being raised "the American way" with hormones and antibiotics and he's avoiding it.  He takes a B12 supplement.  I said I don't care for supplements and that I want to get everything I need from my diet but not from the animals he described. 

Today I received a link from Lucille to this very helpful article on the site explaining the top 10 sources of B12.  I'm sure I'm getting plenty, because I do eat a little meat, fish on Fridays, yogurt every day, and cheese pretty often.  
I love having smart friends who care about me!
Top 10 Foods Highest in Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)
Vitamin B-12, or Cobalamin, is the largest and most complex vitamin currently known to man. A slight deficiency of vitamin B-12 can lead to anemia, fatigue, mania, and depression, while a long term deficiency can potentially cause permanent damage to the brain and central nervous system. Vitamin B-12 can only be manufactured by bacteria and can only be found naturally in animal products, however, synthetic forms are widely available and added to many foods like cereals. Vitamin B-12 can be consumed in large doses because excess is excreted by the body or stored in the liver for use when supplies are scarce. Stores of B-12 can last for up to a year. Below is a list of the top ten vitamin b12 rich foods.

#1: Clams, Oysters, and Mussels 
Shellfish are a great source of vitamin B12 and can be eaten raw, baked, steamed, fried, or made into chowder. In addition to vitamin B12 shellfish are a good source of zinccopper, and iron. Clams provide the most vitamin B-12 with 98.9μg per 100g serving, accounting for 1648% of the RDA. That is 84μg (1401% RDA) per 3 ounce serving, and 187.9μg (3132% RDA) in 20 small clams, or 9.4μg (156.6 %RDA) in one small clam. Mussels and oysters are also good sources of B12 providing 600% RDA and 400% RDA per 100 gram serving. Click to see complete nutrition facts

#2: Liver 
Often appearing on the culinary scene as pâté, liver can also be prepared steamed or fried with onions and herbs. The liver of most any animal is packed with vitamin B-12, the highest on the list are: Lamb, beef, veal, moose, turkey, duck, and goose respectively. Lamb liver provides 85.7μg (1428% RDA) of vitamin B12 per 100g serving, or 72.85μg (230% RDA) in a 3 ounce serving. Click to see complete nutrition facts.

#3: Caviar (Fish Eggs) 
Caviar and fish eggs are most often eaten as a garnish or spread. The eggs of whitefish contain the most vitamin B-12 with 56.4μg (940% RDA) per 100g serving. Caviar contains a third of that with 20μg (333% RDA) of vitamin B12 per 100g serving, 5.6μg (93% RDA) per ounce, and 3.2μg (53% RDA) per tablespoon. Chicken eggs, by comparison, only offer 1.29μg (22% RDA) of vitamin B-12 per 100g serving, or 0.65μg (11% RDA) per egg. 
Click to see complete nutrition facts.

Click to read the rest of the article.

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