This blood test measures both Vitamin B12 and Folate levels. All of the water-soluble B vitamins work as a team to help promote healthy nerves, skin, eyes, hair, liver, muscle tone and cardiovascular function. Adequate levels help to protect from the mental strain caused by depression and anxiety. Vitamin B12 helps spark the production of healthy red blood cells and is needed to support the nervous system. Vitamin B12 helps support the synthesis of the neurotransmitter, serotonin. Conditions associated with decreased levels of Vitamin B12 include anemia, nervous system disorders, memory, muscle strength, hypochlorhydria (low levels of needed stomach acid) and inflammatory bowel diseases. A Vitamin B12 deficiency can cause neuropathy in a treatable dementia, which is most often seen after the age of forty. Folic Acid is the co-enzyme required for purine synthesis and blood production. A deficiency of folic acid can cause symptoms similar to those seen in a deficiency of Vitamin B12, which is why it is recommended both of these B vitamins be checked at the same time. Current research has shown that B vitamins may help reduce levels of homocysteine, an inflammatory marker strongly associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
Test Preparation For Optimal Results:
If possible, have the lab collected early in the morning or shortly after waking. For comparison purposes, have subsequent labs collected close to the same time.
Disclaimer: A health care provider should evaluate a deviation from normal ranges.