High B12

I feel a bit of a fraud! I joined the PA group thinking that I might be B12 deficient, but having persuaded the doc to test it turns out my B12, and folate, is really quite high.

I have not been supplementing with B12 because I wanted to see what my base level was. I also thought I wasn't supplementing folate, but now that I look carefully at the supplements Dr O gave me for adrenal fatigue I see that one does contain folate - in about the same amount as you find in the average folate supplement.

Should I be worried? Key results below - I typed it all into a neat table, but that hasn't pasted in properly!

Serum TSH<.01mlU/L<.30-5.00>Not uncommon to be suppressed with natural thyroid

Serum free T411.4pmol/L<12.00-22.00>Low.

FT34.2pmol/L<3.20-6.8>I generally feel well when my FT3 is at the top of the range, so this is a bit low for me

Serum folate>20ug/L<4.6-18.70>They have flagged this. I am surprised - my diet is good but not perfect by any means. However I assume there is no cause for concern. There is some folate/folic acid in a couple of the supplements you gave me

Serum ferritin127/ug/L<15-300>Ideally would probably be a bit higher. Other red blood cell readings and Hb are at the bottom end of the ranges

Serum Vit B121347 ng/L<180-700>

10 Replies

  • I do not think you need to worry, just obvious you do not have a B12 absorption problem. Expect there is B12 in you supplement, see if it mentions cyanocobalamin and or hydroxocobalamin/ methylcobalamin?

  • High levels of B12 aren't a problem.

    As Marre suggest - would be good to double check that you haven't been supplementing without realising it from the supplement you were given as this could have affected the results.

  • No, I checked carefully. Definitely no B12 in anything! Clearly its not that difficult to get lots of B12 and folate from a relatively normal diet if you can absorb it! I wonder what frighteners the doc will want to put on me for being over range?

  • I do not know, perhaps he/she may do more tests such as liver/renal function etc. You can but wait and see!

  • Do you take any energy drinks in the past? Had you been supplementing B12 in the past? It takes a long time (years) to become deficient, so I would presume just stopping taking supplements, in the absence of PA, the levels would not drop off very fast. The normal body is usually very efficient at recycling B12.

  • No energy drinks, and very little supplementation. Four years ago my reading was around 350, now its 1000 higher around 1350.

    And no, I havent been monitoring for years. I just recently got my last 5 years results.

    I gave up gluten four years ago, and I have gradually been reducing sugar and starches, and moving to something approaching a paleo diet, although I am not yet ready to give up cheese! However I relax the rules when out, gf is as much as I ask others to cope with.

  • I haven't got any links to it and I'm not going looking - but I read something a while back that I think was by Carmel et al, showing that people with normally (unsupplemented) high serum b12 levels were actually more deficient in a research group than people with low b12 levels.

    Like I said, I'm not even going there....

  • Yikes! Have just found an article suggesting high B12 not as a result of supplementation can be a sign of liver or kidney disease - and that these can cause fatigue!

  • It's one thing to absorb B12 from the gut into the bloodstream, and another to get it into your cells. I suspect that high B12 levels (I have them too) is because there is a problem getting the B12 into the cells.

    My serum B12 has gone up from around 500 to 800 over a period where I stopped taking my methylcobalamin. And I'm a 64 year old vegetarian.

    Needless to say my GP isn't interested, and won't even refer me to a haematologist

  • Well, of course I am now working myself up into a panic! Liver and kidneys were scanned 18 months ago when my gastritis started, before it was diagnosed by endoscopy, so nothing was visible then. And the hospital did all sorts of bloods which I presume weren't alarming, although the results weren't shared with the GP surgery.

    I have to wait almost 3 weeks for a telephone consult with my chosen GP. Now I am flapping around wondering whether to see one of the others. I am sure they are fine, its just that I have had such hassle with them over my self medication of natural thyroid hormone. For tomorrow the only appointment is with the retired doc who panicked more than me when I bled a bit post menopausally. (and how shallow am I - she can't seem to get her lipstick to actually land on her lips! I only wear the stuff for parties, but I do get it in the right place!)

    It serves me right for looking stuff up on the internet! I wouldn't say, with overwhelming fatigue, that I count as worried well. But I can see what a doc would think. I might jump to conclusions myself if I didn't know me better!

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