Every vegetarian is seen complaining about the deficiency of vitamin B12 in their body.
Yes, it’s true that there are very less vegetarian alternatives available to get the supplement of vitamin B12 as it mostly exists in fish, meat, eggs and poultry, but there are other sources as well which people are not aware of and these alternatives can be consumed by vegans as well.
Vitamin B-12 is necessary in the body for DNA synthesis, functioning of our nerves, and blood cells. Lack of vitamin B-12 in the body can cause serious health consequences such as pernicious anemia, Balance and walking disturbances, Nerve damage, Confusion, Loss of vibration sensation etc. To stay away from such problems, consumption of vitamin B12 rich food is of utmost important.
One of the most important vitamin B12 supplements for vegetarians is milk. Though it does not give as much of vitamin B12 as compared to fish, meat and poultry but it’s an important food item for vegetarians to rely on for their vitamin B12 requirements. A single 250 mL serving of milk provides 1 µg of vitamin B12 which is little less than half of the recommended daily Dietary requirement.
One cup of whole grain oats or barn can equip you with 30% of your daily requirement of vitamin B12. This is a great source of vitaminB12 to start the day with. Additionally fortified cereal gives you an additional dose of proteins, iron and fibre. Have these fortified cereals with Greek yogurt or a cup of milk and add handful of nuts for that added flavor and nutrients.
Cottage cheese is high in vitamin B12 as well as protein and calcium. It’s an ingredient which can fight against the cancer. Due to its unique properties it’s called ‘Budwig Diet’. 1 cup of cottage cheese can deliver upto 38 percent of the recommended daily intake of vitamin B-12.
Feta cheese is either made from sheep’s milk or by mixing of sheep’s and goat’s milk. It is a great source of vitamin B12 and many other nutrients, like riboflavin (vitamin B2) and calcium. High content of riboflavin in it is beneficial to fight against the problems of headache and migraine. Riboflavin can help to decrease the intensity of headache.
Swiss cheese is also one of the cheeses which are high in Vitamin B12, providing approximately 14% of the daily value per 28 grams. Baby Swiss and Lacy Swiss are the two varieties of Swiss cheeses. Both have small holes and a mild flavor in it. Have it with piece of fruit or a salad to intake proteins, fibre and fat which will make you feel fuller.
Another food which contains good amount of vitamin B-12 is nutritional yeast. These are extracted from sugarcane or beet molasses. Nutritional yeast is a favorite option of Vitamin b12 for vegans. One tablespoon of Nutritional yeast gives you three times of your daily requirement of vitamin B12 additionally 8 grams of proteins and 3 grams of fat. Nutritional yeast smells somewhat like cheese, so you can also sprinkle it on pasta, nachos or even popcorn to get your delicious dose of vitamin B12.
Nori is a seaweed, commonly eaten in Asian countries. Various studies have shown that consuming 4 grams of dried purple nori can help to meet the daily requirement of vitamin B-12. It is used in cooking sushi but you can consume it raw as well. Thus, Nori makes for the best vegetarian alternative for vitamin B12.
Some mushrooms like shiitake contain vitamin B-12 which is difficult to find in plant-based foods. Consuming at least 50 grams of dried shiitake mushrooms can help you meet your daily requirements of vitamin B-12. It may not supply your entire vitamin B12 requirement but it does the job to some extent. Add it in your lunch, dinner or make a mushroom soup for your afternoon snack.
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