Best Form of B12
Which B12 form is best for you (based on your genetics)?
One of the most common nutrients to consider when supplementing the methylation cycle is the proper form of B12. There are 3 different types of B12 that are considered extremely beneficial to the body (hydroxocobalamin, methylcobalamin & adenosylcobalamin). Many automatically think that if you have an MTHFR defect, then you need the form of B12 called methylcobalamin, but that is simply NOT true. It is important to realize that the MTHFR status does not determine the type of B12 that’s best for you, instead it’s the status of genes like COMT, MTR, MTRR as well as VDR Taq. It is true that methylfolate and methylcobalamin work together synergistically along the methylation cycle pathway, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that if you tolerate methylfolate well you’ll also need, want or tolerate methylcobalamin well (even if that’s what most doctors, nutritionists, etc. are currently saying right now).
It seems there may be a general lack of education available to most doctors about the different forms of B12 and what those forms are as well as how they get converted within the body and what each is most beneficial for (not to mention which set of genes or genetic mutations could benefit most from which B12 type). So do your homework when it comes to B12 to see which you may tolerate the best.
The most common form of B12 that you’ll find everywhere is cyanocobalamin and it is not very active or beneficial to the body because the absorption rate is fairly low and it has some cyanide content. It doesn’t absorb well because the body has to convert it first into hydroxocobalamin, and from there the hydroxocobalamin has to be converted into both adenosylcobalamin and methylcobalamin. But if the body has genetic mutations then these conversions don’t happen well at all and the effect is that the body cannot absorb or use of the nutrient very well.
What is the best way to take B12 – pill, shot, sublingual?
What does it mean if your B12 blood serum level comes back high?
What can you do if you have high B12 blood test results?
- Folks with multiple COMT mutations tend to do very well with hydroxocobalamin (it helps mop up excess peroxynitrites which can cause problems)
- Folks with MTR & MTRR mutations may do well with methylcobalamin & adenosylcobalamin supplementation
- And Dr. Amy Yasko talks about folks with a particular mutation status for COMT & VDR Taq as best needing the below forms of B12:
|COMT V158M||VDR Taq||B12 Types That Should Be Tolerated|
|– –||+ + (TT)||All 3 types of B12|
|- -||+ - (Tt)||All 3 types of B12 with less Methylcobalamin|
|- -||- -(tt)||Hydroxocobalamin and Adenosylcobalamin|
|+ –||+ +||All 3 types of B12 with less Methylcobalamin|
|+ –||+ -||Hydroxocobalamin and Adenosylcobalamin|
|+ –||- -||Hydroxocobalamin and Adenosylcobalamin|
|+ +||+ +||Hydroxocobalamin and Adenosylcobalamin|
|+ +||+ -||Hydroxocobalamin and Adenosylcobalamin|
|+ +||- -||Mostly Hydroxocobalamin|