Got Vitamin B12 Blog

Hello Intrinsic Factor!

Posted by Dr. Shannon Wood Gallegos, ND on Wednesday, March 9, 2016 Under: Intrinsic factor

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Why All the Hubbub?

In your stomach, there should be an important protein called intrinsic factor. The intrinsic factor (IF), also known as gastric intrinsic factor (GIF), is a glycoprotein produced by the parietal cells of the stomach. The parietal cells secrete hydrochloric acid (HCl) and intrinsic factor. These cells are located in the gastric glands found in the body of the stomach and the lining of the fundus (the upper part of the stomach).

The absorption of the Vitamin B12 by the small intestine is facilitated by this intrinsic factor. The small intestine can’t properly absorb B12 if the stomach does not make enough intrinsic factor. This could result in someone being Vitamin B12 anemic. Remember that word anemia from Health class way back when? Anemia is when you have decreased red blood cell count. Lack of intrinsic factor to utilize B12 can lead to exactly that, and if you don’t address the problem, you will continue to feel the symptoms of Vitamin B12 anemia: fatigue, problems concentrating, and shortness of breath.

There is a link between not being able to utilize consumed B12 from food and low or non-existent intrinsic factor. Unfortunately, intrinsic factor production can be disrupted by many medications including: antibiotics (such as Amoxicillin and Ciprofloxacin), antacids, H2 blockers, and proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs) which are commonly prescribed for treating heartburn and gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD). Medical researchers continue studying this link between intrinsic factor and Vitamin B12 to better address ultimately improving Vitamin B12 levels.

Our bodies do amazing, complex things which we might take for granted, but when our health breaks down, we know how awful that can feel. A daily Vitamin B12 supplement or a visit to a Got Vitamin B12 Happy Hour weekly or monthly, can keep our bodies in balance. If you rarely feel 100% and healthy, maybe you should have an intrinsic factor antibody test, along with checking Vitamin B12 levels at your next annual physical. With that information, you can address how to help yourself feel better.

Let Got Vitamin B12 help you feel 100%.  

All the best,

The Got Vitamin B12 Team

In : Intrinsic factor 

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