I have been advised to purchase Jarrow sublingual methyl b12 (1000m)
My questions are:
1) Is a lozenge classed as sublingual? I understand that a lozenge slowly absorbed under tongue is better than swallowing b12 in pill form. But with a lozenge are you not also swallowing a lot of the product with your saliva and wasting it? As I have been advised sublingual is best do you recommend I purchase your methyl b12 lozenge? would that be correct?
2) Is it necessary to take other supplements with it for it to work properly for eg. folic acid and b6? and if so what doses do I need with daily b12 (1000) lozenge?
Thank you for any advice . . .kind regards,
Your question highlights one of the more common misconceptions in the nutritional supplement field, i.e. that sublingual vitamin B12 is superior to other oral dosage forms. It’s amazing how so many health food store clerks and so-called nutritionists continue to perpetuate this idea.
Here is how it started. One of the major causes of vitamin B12 deficiency is malabsorption, and one of the most notorious forms of vitamin B12 malabsorption is pernicious anemia. A substance secreted by cells in the stomach, intrinsic factor, is needed for the normal absorption of vitamin B12. When this substance is not present, as is the case in pernicious anemia, a vitamin B12 deficiency occurs. At one time, the only way to overcome this was thought to be the administration of vitamin B12 by injection, which, of course, bypasses the need for “intrinsic factor,” and absorption from the gut.
Well, you cannot sell injectable vitamin B12 in the health food store, so some clever marketing guy came up with another idea for getting around the absorption problem–sublingual absorption! What a great idea. You can bypass the malabsorption problem by having the substance be absorbed directly from under the tongue. Sublingual vitamin B12 was thus born, and has become a very popular type of nutritional supplement.
There is only one problem. Vitamin B12 is not absorbed sublingually.
Sublingual absorption works for small molecules, not large ones, and vitamin B12 is a very large molecule.
It turns out, however, that subsequent research revealed that even people with pernicious anemia can, in fact, benefit from oral vitamin B12. The trick is that they need to take very high dosages. If they do this, enough will be absorbed in spite of the malabsorption problems. Since B12 is inexpensive, and “high dosage” is still very small compared to other vitamins (micrograms vs milligrams), this is easy to accomplish.
So what about sublingual, or lozenge-forms of vitamin B12? It turns out that they work, but only because you end up swallowing the vitamin B12 as the lozenge dissolves, allowing it to be absorbed in the gut just as if it was a normal tablet or capsule.
You were concerned that swallowing the vitamin B12 was “wasting it.” Ironically, the opposite is true.
Buy a lozenge if you wish, but don’t be misled into thinking it will result in sublingual absorption. What is important is that it is a high dose.
The methylcobalamin (Methyl B12) form is thought to be better absorbed than the regular form of B12, and I see no reason not to use it. Jarrow (and others) makes a 5,000 mcg dosage, however, as well as a 1,000 mcg dose, and I would opt for the higher dose.
Vitamin B6 and folic acid work with vitamin B12 to control homocysteine levels, and if that is the reason you are taking the B12, then you should consider that. You should be taking a multivitamin supplement, and perhaps an additional B-Complex supplement, however, and this should provide plenty of those two vitamins.