What Is the Association Between Vitamin B12 and Depression

What Is the Association between Vitamin B12 and Depression?

• Depressed patients, particularly women, have lower blood levels of vitamin B12. Supplementation with vitamin B12 may alleviate the symptoms of depression.

• Vitamin B12 protects the structural integrity of myelin shields on the outer layers of the nerve fibers and supports the production of new red blood cells. Vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to irritability, personality changes, depression, cognitive impairment, and psychosis.

Vitamin B12. Twelve research papers explored the relationship between vitamin B12 and depression in 8,242 people. The meta- analysis revealed that women with low blood levels of vitamin B12 had an increased risk of depression. The correlation, however, was less robust in men.

• Treatment. For depression patients, take daily 400 mcg vitamin B12 (9), 2,000 IU vitamin D3 (11), 800 mcg vitamin B9 (8), and 2 g omega-3 fatty acids (27).