When it comes to essential vitamins, B12 is a powerhouse. It supports the all-important formation of red blood cells, helping prevent anaemia, maintain the nervous system and strengthen bone health.
According to the National Institutes of Health, the recommended dietary allowance of B12 for adults is 2.4 micrograms. With 15% of the general population shown to have lower levels of vitamin B12, it’s important to understand where you can source this important vitamin.
As an essential vitamin, humans cannot produce B12 ourselves so we have to source it from foods or supplements.
See below for the best ways to source B12 depending on your diet.
Meats, fish and animal products
Meat, fish and poultry are the best sources of vitamin B12. For those who eat a healthy, meat-friendly diet, it’s relatively easy to source the right amount of B12.
Animal products which are high in B12 include:
- Salmon and tuna
- Beef, lamb and chicken
B12 foods for a vegan or vegetarian diet
Plant-based foods don’t naturally contain vitamin B12 so it can be hard for vegetarians for vegans to source enough B12.
But this isn’t to say it’s impossible. Many vegan products will contain added B12. Not all products have the same amount so always check the label.
Here are some vegan-friendly foods that are great sources of B12:
- Soy, oat and almond milk
- Nutritional yeast
- Fortified breakfast cereals
- Tempeh and tofu
- Nori (seaweed)
How can you tell if you have a vitamin B12 deficiency? Click here to learn about the signs and symptoms.