The Most Important Nutrient Overlooked By CKD Patients That Can Correct Many Of Their Problems

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A recent study found that vitamin B12 deficiency may have deleterious effects on Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) patients, especially those on Hemodialysis, including increasing their resistance to anemia treatments such as Erythropoietin Stimulating Agents (ESAs). Dr. David L. Katz, Director of Yale University Prevention Research Center has concluded that a B12 vitamin deficiency can limit your ability to think clearly, cause poor maintenance of the nervous system and increase chances for anemia.

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Results published in the International Journal of Nephrology and Renovascular Disease found that Vitamin B12 supplementation was associated with improved anemia and limited ESA administration. These findings are important for two reasons including the fact that appropriate levels of vitamin B12 may improve CKD patients' quality of life by making new body cells and reducing cases of anemia. Also, limiting the intake of ESAs such as Epogen, Procrit and Aranesp reduces the risk of induced seizures, high blood pressure, headaches, heart attack, stroke or even death in people with CKD, according to the Food and Drug Administration.   

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Common manifestations of vitamin B12 deficiency include weakness, numbness and tingling, fatigue, dizziness, swelling and irritation of the mouth and tongue, as well as irritability. This nutrient can be most abundantly found in fish, shellfish, meat, eggs, and dairy products. Though the dialysis company, Davita, recommends that deficient individuals take a 2-3 ug/day dose, KidneyBuzz.com encourages you to check with your Dietitian to determine which foods are most effective for maintaining sufficient B12 levels for your unique needs. 

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References:

David L. Katz, MD, MPH, FACPM, FACP Director, Yale University Prevention Research Center Director. "Vitamin B12: The Most Important Nutrient You Aren't Thinking About." Http://www.doctoroz.com/. Integrative Medicine Center at Griffin Hospital

Saifan C, Samarneh M, Shtaynberg N, Nasr R, El-Charabaty E, El-Sayegh S. "Treatment of Confirmed B12 Deficiency in Hemodialysis Patients Improves Epogen® Requirements." Http://www.dovepress.com/. Dove Medical Press Ltd.

"The ABCs of Vitamins for Kidney Patients." Davita.com. - DaVita