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Sublingual Massage — Absorbing B12 Fast & Efficiently Under the Tongue

Discussion in 'Detox: Methylation; B12; Glutathione; Chelation' started by Hip, Dec 18, 2012.

  1. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    Sublingual massage is a technique I figured out which appears to get supplements like vitamin B12 rapidly absorbed — in a matter of seconds — through the sublingual mucous membranes under your tongue.

    Normally when you take a supplement sublingually, you place the tablet under your tongue, and let it slowly dissolve over 5 minutes or so. However, this approach takes time, and is not efficient: much of the supplement is wasted because your saliva tends to wash it down your throat.​

    What I do instead is first crush the supplement tablet into a fine powder, place this fine powder under my tongue, and then use my index finger to gently massage this powder into the mucous membranes under the tongue. I use my finger to spread the supplement powder right across the entire surface area on the underside of the tongue, and the entire surface area on the floor of the mouth. It is important to massage the powder right into the two pockets at the rear end of the under-tongue area, on the left and right.

    This technique is what I call sublingual massage.

    If you don't have much saliva in your mouth — if you have Sjogren's for example — you may need to add just 3 or 4 drops of water under your tongue to help dissolve the dry supplement powder into solution before you begin your finger massage.

    The sublingual massage itself takes only 20 seconds to do, and the impression I get is that this massage technique gets a higher percentage of the supplement absorbed into your body, compared to just letting it dissolve as a tablet under the tongue.

    I think the sublingual massage gives higher absorption because: (1) it uses the full surface area of your sublingual mucous membranes, (2) it is done quickly, so less of the supplement is washed away by your saliva, and (3) because the mechanical action of the massage itself may aid the penetration of the supplement through the mucous membranes.

    When you take your finger out after the sublingual massage, the finger will usually be covered with some of the wetted supplement powder, but don't waste this: massage this last bit of the supplement into your upper gum area and inner cheeks, which are also absorbent mucous membranes.
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2014
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  2. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

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    This is interesting because I've read people saying that sublinguals that take a longer time to dissolve is a good thing and more is absorbed that way.
     
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  3. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    I think that is probably true in the case of tablets, because there is only a limited contact area between the tablet and the mucous membranes (based on the diameter of the tablet). This means that the rate of absorption is slow, because only a small area of your mucous membranes is effectively being employed. So in this case, we would want a tablet that dissolves slowly, in order to match the slow absorption rate.

    However, when you crush that same tablet into a fine powder, and spread the powder across you entire sublingual mucus membranes, you are greatly increasing the effective contact area with the mucous membranes, so a lot more of the supplement can be absorbed at the same time, and so you don't need long timescales.


    Incidentally, the best people to test the efficacy of this sublingual massage technique are those that are sensitive to vitamin B12 and are familiar with the effects of a good dose of B12. These people will be better able to gauge how efficient this technique is. I am only slightly sensitive to the effects of vitamin B12, so although it seems to me that this sublingual massage works well, I would love to get feedback from others that try this technique.
     
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  4. AFCFS

    AFCFS Senior Member

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    Wash my index finger? :thumbsup:
     
  5. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    Yes, wash your hands before you start.
     
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  6. Xara

    Xara Senior Member

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    I like massages! :)

    Interesting. I'll be starting with mb12 next week and i'll definitely try the massage. Do yo think it would work on tablets you normally swallow, like methylfolate (solgar metafole) as well?
     
  7. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    Yes, I am sure it would. Though if the absorption or bioavailability of a supplement in the guts is normally good, it is not really worth taking that supplement sublingually.

    You'd only want to take supplements by the sublingual route when their absorption or bioavailability in the gut is very poor. For example, the gut absorption of B12 is less than 1%, whereas taking B12 sublingually you probably achieve a good 5% absorption, if you do it right.

    So in general, sublingual administration is useful when gut absorption or bioavailability is low.


    Though one other thing that is very useful about sublingual administration as that the supplement or drug gets absorbed fast — within minutes.

    Sometimes when I go to bed, I find I cannot sleep due to insomnia or due to being too mentally "wired". I know from past experience that a 3 or 5 mg capsule of melatonin will get me to sleep, but if I swallow this melatonin capsule orally, it will take 45 to 60 minutes before it is absorbed by my stomach and is in my system, and so it will take at least this long before it induces sleep.

    However, if I break open my capsule of melatonin, and just massage in the melatonin powder in the capsule under my tongue, I know I will be asleep within 5 minutes, because the melatonin is very rapidly absorbed under the tongue.

    Massaging in some melatonin powder under my tongue is a sure-fire recipe for instantly achieving sleep for me.
     
  8. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

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    How do we know which supplements are absorbed well in the gut? I know with certain ones where the effect is obvious we can find this out through trial and error, but others the effect might be too subtle to tell the difference.
     
  9. Rand56

    Rand56 Senior Member

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    Would it be beneficial to also do the sublingual massage with adenosyl B-12 or is gut absorption much better with this compared to the methyl B-12 where it wouldn't matter?
     
  10. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    Most drugs and supplements have an acceptable absorption and bioavailability, acceptable being in the range of say 10% to 100%. Often the ones that don't have good absorption in the gut are sold as sublingual tablets, injectables, or suppositories for that very reason.

    You can use Google to check the percentage absorption of a drug or supplement. For example, if you perform THIS Google search on the absorption | bioavailability of vitamin C, you will discover that its absorption is 80% to 90%.

    Note that the terms absorption and bioavailability are not quite the same thing:

    The oral absorption of a drug or supplement is how much is absorbed in the gut, as a percentage.

    The oral bioavailability is how much of that drug or supplement remains available after absorption, as a percentage. Some drugs or supplements, like resveratrol for example, are well absorbed, but they are rapidly metabolized by the liver into other substances, so the actual bioavailability of resveratrol is low. (The percentage absorption of resveratrol in the stomach is 70%, but the bioavailability of resveratrol is just 5%. Ref: 1.)
     
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  11. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    All forms of vitamin B12 — namely methylcobalamin, adenosylcobalamin (dibencozide), hydroxocobalamin and cyanocobalamin — are very poorly absorbed (<1%) in the gut in higher doses. So to get a reasonable absorption, the sublingual approach is advisable. (You can also get reasonable absorption via rectal suppositories).

    Though B12 is a complicated case: for very low oral doses not more than 1 mcg, the gut absorption of B12 is around 56%, but with high doses of say 1000 mcg, the absorption drops dramatically, to less then 1%. This is because B12 absorption depends on intrinsic factor secreted by the stomach, and once you have used all the intrinsic factor for that day, you don't get further B12 absorption. Ref: 1.
     
  12. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

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    This shouldn't be a problem with B12 lozenges, but I tried it with reduced glutathione powder which is very acidic and irritated the bottom of my mouth below the tongue.
     
  13. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    I once took glutathione powder sublingually every day for a week or two, letting it linger in my mouth so that it would be slowly absorbed. Very quickly I found that this acidic supplement thinned the enamel on my teeth, and all my teeth became very sensitive to touch, and to hot and cold. I had to use a fluoride mouthwash every day in order to try to rebuild the enamel fast. In short: I don't recommend sublingual glutathione.
     
  14. Lynn

    Lynn Senior Member

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    Interesting about the melatonin. I take Ambien for sleep and it takes about 40 minutes for me to feel at all sleepy. Unfortunately one of the side effects of Ambien is food cravings and I feel the urge to eat while I am waiting for it to kick in. Do you think it would work faster if I crushed it and took it sublingually?

    Lynn
     
  15. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

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    The glutathione sublingual tablets made by Source naturals seem to be ok though because they're only 50 mg which means they're diluted with other materials. Although I can't guarantee that others won't have problems I used them for over a year without any issues. I thought I'd save money by just getting the powder instead.
     
  16. Lotus97

    Lotus97 Senior Member

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    Not sure about Ambien, but I've taken adderall sublingually and it kicks in pretty quickly. However, if you experience the side effects of increased appetite from Ambien then those would also occur quicker, but it's worth a try. Are you going to bed hungry? Maybe if you ate a healthy meal you'd be less likely to have food cravings or if you don't like eating right before bed some people find taking glutamine reduces food cravings and is also useful for quitting smoking.
     
  17. Lynn_M

    Lynn_M Senior Member

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    Some pharmaceuticals require stomach acid in order to be activated, so a sublingual massage wouldn't work for them. For example, Synthroid and other levothyroxines need to be taken orally. However, I have taken Nature-throid and other dessicated thyroids exclusively sublingually for over 8 years, and I seem to be absorbing them well, based on my FT3 and FT4 blood tests.
     
  18. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    Interesting. I was not aware that some drugs need stomach acid to facilitate their absorption. I found this:
     

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