How long for B12 levels to rise?

As title suggests, my level was 211, would like it closer to 500 as advised here. Taking liquid B12 2000mg, taking two of these per day so dose seems quite high. It's solgar sublingual. So does anyone know how long I should leave it before having b12 levels checked again? Do I need to leave four hours between this and my thyroxine and should I take the two doses separately or together or does it matter? Lots of questions i know but I've found the advice on this site the best and easiest to understand. Thanks guys

28 Replies

  • Thyroid should be taken on an empty stomach. B vitamins can cause nausea on an empty stomach, so I usually take my B12 just after lunch, or at least with a protein containing snack.

  • Thank you, I am leaving the four hour gap between the two but I also have other tablets to take so was wondering could I lump any together to save me the hassle of remembering them all lol

  • I take about 100 capsules a day of hormones and supplements due to my cancer recovery and CFS. The only way to stay sane is to lump them together.

    My functional medicine doc has specified what to take when. The big issue is sleep. Some are sleep promoting, some rev up your body, so ibe had dramatic changes when switching when I take certain things.

    I also bought little cans used for carrying loose tea that work great for carrying my midday pills around with me. Fits in a purse or pocket when I'm away from home.

  • Oh my, I'm so sorry to hear you've had cancer, I hope you're recovering well! It's an awful disease. I shouldn't complain about my tablets I don't take anywhere near as many as you. But I do understand the plight of missing a good night's sleep, if I get to sleep I never stay asleep, I don't even know why! But I do have small kids so I'll blame them, as they tend to get the blame for most of our sleepless nights lol

  • When you start taking vitamin B12 supplements you cannot do a retest for many months or even a year AFTER you have STOPPED taking them completely, as what you end up testing is the fact you are taking vitamin B12 supplements.

    This is actually mentioned in the NICE guidelines for vitamin B12 supplementation.

    Unfortunately many GPs seem unaware of this fact so freak out when people taking B12 supplementation have a blood/serum B12 test and come back with a high reading.

    So if you hear a doctor is going to test you for B12 the advice I was given was to stop taking the tablets for 48 hours. Other people say 5 days. Either way just stop taking the tablets for a few days and then have the test. This should hopefully mean your reading won't be so high so the doctor will leave you alone.

    If you think you have PA then there are other tests that can be done to prove whether you do or not. The best people to ask are the Pernicious Anaemia society on healthunlocked.

  • Thanks bluebug, my doctor isn't even treating me for low B12, I am trying to do it myself so I will be ordering a blood test myself and wanted to know how long I need to take this level of supplement in order for levels to be 500? Do you know how slowly or quickly they will rise? I thought I would just take B12 for life but should I not?

  • Get Methylmalonic acid tested. It gives a more accurate reading of B12 sufficiency, even when taking B12.

    High MCV and high homocysteine ate other markers of B12 insufficiency.

    You can't really overdose on B12. It's far more dangerous to be deficient, which you are. So, plan on staying on it for a long while.

  • Learner you're so informed, I would need to write all of this down. I believe I should have been treated by my gp for B12 deficiency but two of them told me it's normal so I decided to get my health in my own hands. I'm trying to educate myself but it's so complicated and difficult and when I have foggy brain a lot I find the information isn't sinking in. The main reason I'm taking the b12 is I feel it leads to anxiety and I'm also waiting on counselling for it as I really want to attack it from all levels. My thyroid is a whole different battle but I understand that a lot more lol

  • The reason the GPs didn't notice your low B12 is unless you have sufficient symptoms that can be classed as you having Pernicious Anaemia they are generally unaware of what a low level means.

    They are simply not taught about nutrition and exercise at undergraduate level.

    So only the ones who are specifically interested in it will seek out a postgraduate course. If they then have a relevant qualification they aren't likely to work for the NHS as they cannot practice what they know.

    The reason for this is due to doctors like Dr Chandy being hounded by the GMC for not following NHS England guidelines on treating patients as in his view it left patients still ill. As he's old he retired but if you are younger you can't do that.

    Dr Chandy is involved in the B12 support group - They have a lot of B12 information. I rather refer you to the support groups than give you information as what they have will be more up to date.

  • It annoys me because I had enough symptoms for her to run a test but when you're sitting on the border of normal but clearly feel like shit they should treat you, not the computer screen. Had my levels not been so close to the 200 mark required to get B12 injections I would have accepted I didn't have an issue. Everything that I've had tested this year is on the low normal so I feel like there's a bigger picture but I've stopped running trying to get them to listen to me and I'm just educating myself and completely changing my diet and lifestyle. It's so frustrating, I am more than a number on your computer screen. But I do still love the NHS I have to say lol

  • NHS Is great when you are an actual emergency. Not good for chronic conditions and things that could have easily been prevented IF:

    1. they listened to you, and,

    2. gave you sufficient information.

    Unfortunately with vitamin and mineral deficiencies because signs and symptoms of so many overlap they have to run a full panel. Most GPs won't do that to save money in the short term.

    The bigger issue is your hypothyrodism. Your entire metabolism is effected.

  • Yeah I agree, I've had to refuse anti depressants so many times as I knew it was due to my thyroid not depression, I'm now on them but for anxiety and that all stemmed from my thyroid too but I was willing to take them a few months ago after a bad panic attack. Yeah I don't think enough listen and treat one symptom rather than looking at the bigger picture. I'm good with my thyroid, I've had an underachievement thyroid for many years, it's this B12 stuff I need to master but I'm stubborn enough to stick with it till I feel normal again lol

  • Low B12 is more likely to be the cause of your anxiety. A result under 500 can present with neurological symptoms and if left untreated cannot be resolved.

  • Marz I do believe you are right, I never thought and still don't feel like I am an anxious person but when I am getting a cold, for example and my energy is a bit low that is when I will experience anxiety and it feels more like a physical reaction as my body is run down at the time. Although I will admit it has left some residual anxiety as in the fear of when I'll feel anxious, it's an awful affliction. Thank you for saying that though, it's still nice to hear that people believe you, sometimes I think my friends feel like I should just take the anti anxiety meds and accept my diagnosis, which I would if I felt it fitted, it doesn't,I've not been right for over a year and the anxiety is one of many many symptoms I've had so like I said there's a bigger picture and I don't want any irreversible damage so I'm just trying to do as much as I can, I've watched anxiety consume a friend for four years only to be diagnosed as B12 deficient this year when her levels have been low for, you guessed it, 4 years so I have seen first hand the effects of it being untreated!! Oh my I did rant I'm sorry lol

  • Yes the real life events I read about on the PAS forum should have the GP's hanging their heads in shame - in most cases.

    Gp's earn dosh for prescribing Anti- anxiety pills - nothing for B12.

    Keep on eith self treating 😊

  • I definitely will, I just refuse to accept ill feel like crap, no thanks, if gluten free, B12 supplements and two hundred carrots a day is what it takes then that's what I'll do haha thanks again 😊

  • Thyroid is important as it runs your metabolism, the rate at which your biochemical processes move.

    However, nutrient deficiencies can kill you and running out of ingredients faster with a sped up metabolism can cause damage that much faster.

    Well worth having the facts. Genova Diagnostics NutrEval is an incredibly valuable test which can identify nutrient imbalances and deficiencies. It's been valuable to my family in solving a serious mental illness, successfully beating cancer, and attacking CFS.

    It helps to know where you stand, and the answers are sometimes very surprising. We're all biochemically unique, with different genetic and environmental factors.

  • Leeanne,

    You are asking good questions, which is a great start. You are very wise to think there's a bigger picture.

    Taking B12 and thyroid are good first steps, but it really is s bit more complicated and educating yourself, piece by piece, will give you ownership of your health going forward.

    Think of it as building blocks....

    1) What is going into your body? A high quality, nutrient dense diet, ideally free of gluten, corn, soya, milk, sugar, other allergens, and toxins? And ideally, free of drugs which can damage mitochondria?

    2) How is your body at digesting what you put in it? Do you have enough stomach acid, pancreatic enzymes, bile, and a happy microbiome, free of candida, h. pylori, etc. and parasites? Can you make and use intrinsic factor to digest B12?

    3) Do you have any nutrient deficiencies, chronic infections, or toxicities which can slowly but surely destroy your health?

    4) How well do your immune system, hormonal system, detoxification system, and mitochondria work?

    5) Are you willing to commit to finding answers, educating yourself, and applying solutions to what you find?

    I know it sounds intimidating, but these basic steps cover the keys to being well.

    Some good places to start, do you can be in charge and drive your doctor to get you help, or you to help yourself if you can't find a good doctor are:

    The New Optimum Nutrition for the Brain by Patrick Holford

    Primal Body Primal Mind by Nora Gedgaudas

    The Food Intolerance Bible by Anthony Hayne

    These books are suited to learning a bit at a time and explain concepts well. They'll get you through steps 1 and 2 and part of 3 above. Master those and you'll be wildly equipped to finish steps 3-5.

    Keep asking questions, be persistent, educate yourself and advocate for yourself with your doctor.

    You'll find s thyroid doesn't just go off the rails by itself... there are other dynamics which push it there... and B12 deficiency US far more than pernicious anemia.

    Best wishes...

  • Are you in America? I did a quick Google of the test you suggested and from what I can see it's only available there? I'm in northern Ireland ☺️ I do think you're right in what you're saying, my thyroid has been under active for around 14 years and was well maintained with the levothyroxine until the end of last year when I discovered it was waaaaaay up and bringing my men's down and thyroid levels back to normal didn't make me feel as I expected to feel and this is when I discovered I was low in B12 for example but gp won't treat it. I decided to go gluten free in October to try and avoid hashis flare ups and I'm actually going to embark on a juice only diet in Jan as I've been interested in the effects it has had on people's overall health but I'm aware the B12 isn't something I'll get from fruit and veg so that's why I'm supplementing this at the minute and focusing my energy on it. I will keep note of the reading material as I do find it all fascinating, even if some of it is over my head lol

  • There's a Genova Diagnostics UK site, not sure about Ireland.

    I think you reached a tipping point, and your body reacted.

    From everything I've seen, thyroid problems don't happen in isolation. There's something else causing thyroid to malfunction. You can band aid things for a ling while taking thyroid hormone but if you never address the root cause, you'll get sicker.

    Gluten is definitely one thing that can set off thyroid problems, and has been linked to over 200 diseases, so you are wise to avoid it. There are also cross reactive foods, with molecules the size of gluten molecules, which can cause problems, too.

    Juice diets are very carb heavy, with no fat and little protein. Carbs convert directly to glucose, and glucose promotes cancer. They do have lots of nutrients, however, without animal protein or fat, you could be dangerously deplete your body of key nutrients.

    Your cell membranes are mostly fat. Your brain is 70% fat. Your nerves depend on B12 for the myelin sheath. Your hormones can't be made without cholesterol. Your immune system needs zinc. Your mitochondria need carnitine. Well sourced animal products have these nutrients, juices don't. You can't detoxify without adequate B12 and amino acids.

    I've run into too many sick vegans and vegetarians, including those who developed diabetes, cancer, etc.

    Try an autoimmune Paleo diet. Or even a ketogenic diet to radicals reclaim your health. I saw Alessandro Fassetti, whom lives in the UK talk to a group of doctors about ketogenic diets - very powerful and filled with facts. Vegetables are great, non starchy ones, especially.

    Best to you.

  • Leannemcc19,

    It took 8 weeks to raise my B12 from 300+ to over 700 when taking 1,200mcg methylcobalamin.

  • Oh that's much quicker than I imagined. Do you know if the liquid stuff I'm taking is good? I have been told there are different types. I'll change if necessary

  • Leannemcc19,

    No idea. I was using a spray and liked the taste so much I was getting through it too quickly so switched to 1,000mcg Jarrows Formula sublinguals.

  • Haha you liked the taste, mine is a liquid and I hate it lol thanks very much I think I'll see how I get on with this and do a wee test mid Feb to see where I'm at and if it's not working I'll go from there


  • Leannemcc19,

    When you've finished the liquid try BetterYou Boost B12 spray which tastes of apricots or try Jarrows Formula sublingual lozenges which taste of lemon or cherry.

  • I will do thanks

  • I have a b12 defficency and I'm having injections every 12 weeks on the dot, I started to feel very tired at about week 6-8 so I recently purchased addition b12 tablets to take.

    I was recently advised that b12 tablet form doesn't get asborbed in the blood and therefore it's pretty pointless taking the additional as a supplement .

    Has anyone else heard about this and what are the best options ? I'm in the uk so getting stuff to help can be tricky !

    Thanks in advance

  • Hiya Russell, I'm not best qualified to answer this question as I am only learning all of this myself but I was also told that which is why I opted for the liquid form which I hold under my tongue for ten seconds before swallowing. I bought it in Holland and Barrett. You might be best to post this as a new thread as the reply may get missed in this thread and someone who knows what they are talking about will give you a better answer. Good luck ☺️

You may also like...