Vitamin B12 helps to make DNA, the genetic material in all cells.
The essential nutrient also helps prevent a type of anaemia called megaloblastic anaemia.
The body absorbs only as much vitamin B12 that it needs with any excess being passed through one’s urine.
Vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms are pertinent to recognise as left untreated, serious long-term health complications could occur.
Experiencing any of the following three signs in your body could mean you are dangerously low in the vitamin.
Migraine headaches may occur if a person is lacking in B12.
Thyroid Patient Advocacy said: “These may be preceded by a temporary blind spot in the centre of the field of vision, usually lasting about ten minutes, and sometimes followed by facial pain under the eyes.
“After the blind spot vanishes, there may be zigzag streaks through the vision that may last a few hours.
“Even in the same person, there may be extreme variations in the headaches themselves.
“They may be quite severe with nausea or they may be virtually non-existent.”
Vitamin B12 deficiency may lead to nerve damage.
This causes a tingling feeling in the body or a numbness felt in the hands and feet.
Medical News Today said: “Vitamin B12 deficiency may cause pins and needles in the hands or feet.
“This symptom occurs because the vitamin plays a crucial role in the nervous system, and its absence can cause people to develop nerve conduction problems or nerve damage.”
Nerve shock on the body
Feeling a sudden shock sensation on the side of the body could be a warning sign of a deficiency.
Thyroid Patient Advocacy said: “It can be felt coming on a few seconds before it hits, and then it hits almost like a mild but deep electric shock and quickly subsides.
“It can occur at the side of either hip or on either side of the upper body, along the ribs.
“Worse yet, it can occur consecutively in at least two or three locations, one right after the other.
The NHS advises to see a GP if you think you may have a vitamin B12 or folate deficiency.
It states: “These conditions can often be diagnosed based on your symptoms and the results of a blood test.
“It’s important for vitamin B12 or folate deficiency anaemia to be diagnosed and treated as soon as possible.
“This is because although many of the symptoms improve with treatment, some problems caused by the condition can be irreversible.”