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What Is Sublingual B12?

Written by Dr. Group, DC Founder
A dropper full of vitamin B12.

Vitamin B12 plays a vital role in energy and red blood cell production, protects DNA, supports cardiovascular and bone health, and is absolutely necessary for memory and overall mental health. The concern is, your body doesn’t absorb vitamin B12 too well. What’s more, it’s estimated that about 40 percent of Americans are deficient. Sublingual B12 appears to provide better results to more people than the normal tablet form. If you aren’t familiar with sublingual B12, read on.

Why Supplement with B12?

A common trait in heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and osteoporosis patients is B12 deficiency. People suffering from depression often have low B12 levels. Your body cannot make B12, so it must get this vitamin from your diet.

When you eat foods rich in B12, like eggs, milk, meat, fish, cheese, and poultry — or you take it in supplement form — the cells of your stomach releases a substance known as intrinsic factor. This transports B12 safely through digestion and preps it for absorption. If this factor gets out of whack, you don’t get enough B12. Low stomach acidity and damage to cells in the stomach reduces the amount of intrinsic factor you make, and, the older you get, the less intrinsic factor is produced.[1]

Sublingual B12 = Better Absorption

Vitamin B12 supplements come as tablets, sublingual tablets, or liquids. Except in extreme cases of deficiency, shots of B12 aren’t overly necessary.[2] The tablets depend on digestive function for the most part, which is one reason they’re not as effective. The benefit of sublingual vitamin B12 is that you don’t have to rely on digestion. Here’s how Sublingual B12 works: sublingual forms of B12 — whether in liquid or tablet form — are placed under the tongue. You hold it in your mouth to allow the B12 to absorb directly into your blood through the membrane in your mouth. This bypasses the digestive process.

Advantages of Sublingual B12

Sublingual B12 circumvents digestion so you can get a lot of value out of it regardless of the state of your stomach or intrinsic factor production. Most sublingual vitamin B12 formulas have the same types of B12 that your body prefers — methylcobalamin and adenosylcobalamin. Other B12 supplements may contain B12 in the form of cyanocobalamin, which requires your liver to remove the cyanide (cyano-) molecule before it can create a natural methylcobalamin form.

Global Healing's Vitamin B12 is a vegan-friendly supplement that contains methylcobalamin, adenosylcobalamin, and hydroxocobalamin. This high-quality supplement is an excellent choice for vegans and vegetarians, or for anyone who has concern they may not get enough B12 in their diet.

Do you use sublingual B12? Tell us how it’s working for you!

References (2)
  1. Michael R. Kolber, MD MSc CCFP. Oral vitamin B12: a cost-effective alternative. Can Fam Physician. 2014 Feb; 60(2): 111-112.
  2. Jeff C Kwong, David Carr, Irfan A Dhalla, Denise Tom-Kun, and Ross EG Upshur. Oral vitamin B12 therapy in the primary care setting: a qualitative and quantitative study of patient perspectives. BMC Fam Pract. 2005; 6: 8. doi: 10.1186/1471-2296-6-8.

†Results may vary. Information and statements made are for education purposes and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. If you have a severe medical condition or health concern, see your physician.


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