Choline on the Brain? A Guide to Choline in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
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vitamin b recommendations

Discussion in 'General Treatment' started by Pink, Feb 12, 2018.

  1. Pink

    Pink Senior Member

    Tri state area
    I had a blood test recently & i came up lacking some vitamins, and i wanted to start w/ the b vitamins.
    my levels were:
    b1 0.9
    b2 1.3
    b5 14.4
    b6 4.8
    oddly enough, my b12 level is good at 604, and my other b vitamin levels are good too.
    (i'm low in vitamin d, omega 3 and ferritin, too high in copper but i wanted to take 1 thing at a time.)

    I tried a super b complex vitamin from Naturemade:
    it contains
    vit C (ascorbic acid) 150 mg
    thiamine (thiamine mononitrate) 100 mg
    riboflavin 20 mg
    niacin (niacinamide) 25 mg
    vit B6 (pyridoxine hydrochloride) 2 mg
    folate 667 mcg dfe (400 mcg folic acid)
    b12 (cyanocobalamine) 15 mcg
    biotin 30mcg
    pantothenic acid (d calcium pantothenate) 5.5 mg
    calcium (dibasic calcium phosphate) 35 mg

    I took these on Fri, sat and sunday and by sunday night i felt horribly sick inside. (i posted this on the anxiety thread). it felt like i was having the physical signs of anxiety but not mentally.
    Nausea, restlessness, heart racing, etc.
    So I'm wondering if it was a reaction to the b vitamins, and if there is a better brand to try.

    If i can't take the B vitamins, then how do I deal w/ deficiencies?
  2. Shoshana

    Shoshana Northern USA

    Northern USA
    I don't know the answer, but I would start by stopping taking them, for 2 days without them, to see if the symptoms that MIGHT be new or caused by them , will stop or not.

    If they stop, then I would take one, for a day,
    and NOT take it the next day.
    See if you get that possible reaction or not.
    From just having 1, and skipping the following day.

    Perhaps you could tolerate it every other day, but not every day.
    It is just an idea.

    If you try a different brand, I personally would choose one with no vit c, and if you want vit c, I would choose a different form of the vit c.

    Maybe someone else will have a good suggestion or idea for you to consider.
    I don't know if this is something that is better to work up to gradually, such as start at 2 per week, then 3... etc.

    Just ideas. I do not know.
    I am sorry they did not feel right!!! It is definitely a good idea to try vitamins, including b vitamins. Sorry you had a bad experience!
    And sorry that gives you added confusion now, instead of just plain clear help for you.
    PinkPanda and Pink like this.
  3. Pink

    Pink Senior Member

    Tri state area
    Thank u @Shoshana , i was hoping taking vitamins would bring some slight relief.
    Then again, who knows maybe it was just some wonky anxiety attack, I do have a lot of anxiety as u know.
    I don't need the vitamin C, i just wanted a Bcomplex that had all the vitamins I needed.
    Shoshana likes this.
  4. PinkPanda

    PinkPanda Senior Member

    Hey @Pink
    I had troubles with b-complexes, too.
    What comes to mind first when I'm looking at the b-complex you are taking:

    Folic acid: Folic acid is a synthetic form of folate, it is not found naturally in foods. To be activated it needs to be metabolized by the enzyme DHFR, which requires NADPH. The general consesus on this forum is that folic acid can be tolerated badly as a synthetic form.

    Natural folate forms that can be supplemented are methylfolate and folinic acid.

    Cyanocobalamin: Cyanocobalamin is also a synthetic vitamin B12 form which is not usually found in foods. It contains cyanide, which has toxic properties. Although it won't poison you in those amounts, it still needs to be detoxed by the body. This further reduces glutathione or other antioxidants, which might already be too low in ME/CFS.

    Natural B12 forms are hydroxocobalamin, methylcobalamin and adenosylcobalamin. I tolerate hydroxcobalamin best out of those.

    You didn't post the reference range, but I guess these are all too low/ below the range?

    I see two options.
    First of all, stopping the b-complex as @Shoshana suggested seems sensible, to figure out if it is causing your symptoms.
    If it is, you can switch to another b-complex, which for example doesn't contain folic acid and cyanocobalamin. You might still not tolerate it well, though, you'd have to try it out.

    The other option I see, is trying vitamin supplements alone, not in a b-complex. An advantage is, that you can judge better what vitamins are helping you and which aren't. I, for example don't tolerate vitamin B6 and vitamin B1 well, if you don't either, you won't be able tell, when taking a b-complex.

    Vitamin B2, B5 and B12 have been helpful for me in general, and B3 as nicotinic acid. There seem to be individual differences though on how well supplements are tolerated.

    If you want to take some b-vitamins alone, I would still start carefully and take low doses, to reduce negative effects.

    And another thought: In case the vitamin levels in the blood were measured in their active forms, activation might also be an issue. The enzymes that activate vitamins need cofactors. Vitamin B1 and B6 for example need magnesium for activation, so in case they measured low levels of active B1 and active B6 this could also be a sign of magnesium deficiency.
    Shoshana, PatJ, Mary and 1 other person like this.
  5. Sundancer

    Sundancer Senior Member

    Hi @Pink,

    have you ever looked into liverphases? I don't know if this article is any good ( did not read it) but the picture is what I wanted to show.

    If liver phase 1 goes too fast you can get those symptoms you are describing, some of the B's have more influence on that process then others. I see your supplement is pretty high in B1, and that may be the source of your trouble.

    but of course it maybe something else too, just my take on things. From myself I found out that too high B1 affects me in the way you describe. Same story goes for folate I think.

    If it rings a bell you might also look in what food/stuff you use is triggering phase one to go too fast ( coffee for instance, and smoking, but also food additives, stuff that you do not need whereas you do need the B's)
  6. Pink

    Pink Senior Member

    Tri state area
    Thank u @PinkPanda and @Sundancer
    I didn't fully understand everything in your posts, but it might make sense to start w individual b's.
    The b12 level and magnesium levels are good , so I don't need either of those.
    (I don't drink coffee or smoke , sundancer)
    Thank u for your ideas!
    Shoshana and PinkPanda like this.
  7. Shoshana

    Shoshana Northern USA

    Northern USA
    That sure is some great info and ideas @PinkPanda and @Sundancer

    Like @Pink, I don't understand it all, but it has very good info in both posts, and I will try rereading them at other times too, to see if I can slowly understand them, in parts.
    Thanks for that input , for Pink and for all of us.

    It is true that sometimes our body can use the vitamin in one form but not in another. And tolerate it or not, depending on which form.

    It's too bad it cant be simpler and cheaper to figure out something helpful!
    PinkPanda and Pink like this.
  8. Mary

    Mary Forum Support Assistant

    Southern California
    Hi @Pink - first, @PinkPanda gave you some good information. I know it can all be confusing and overwhelming at times, it can get so complicated. Anyways, the idea of trying one new B at a time is a very good one.

    Unlike pinkpanda, I do well with B1 and B6 and have to take extra of both, as well as a B complex. An important thing I learned when I started to take extra B1 is that it increased my need for phosphorous. What happened was I took 100 mg. B1 (in addition to my B complex) and the next day had a really nice boost in energy. It was great. And then the next day I got very very tired so had to stop it. It's a long story I won't go into here but I was able to figure out that the B1 had increased my need for phosphorous, which then caused a phosphorous deficiency, which caused the severe fatigue. I did some more research and learned that dairy products are a very good source of phosphorous. So I drank several glasses of kefir and sure enough, the awful fatigue went away, and I was able to continue with the B1. I continue to drink kefir a few times a week and also eat a lot of sunflower seeds which are high in phosphorous.

    B6 (in the form of P-5-P, bioavailable form) is also very important for me. I take it with breakfast and lunch. If I take it at night, it gives me insomnia. It boosted my energy a little too and I did not have any bad side effects when I started the B6.

    B5 is pantothenic acid, which is important for adrenal health. So it's quite possible your adrenals need some support. I took extra B5 for years, as well as an adrenal glandular product which I still take in small doses. Weak adrenals can cause severe fatigue and also interfere with sleep.

    I don't do well with extra B2, although many people here do - we're all different. But again I leaned this by taking B2 all by itself, though I do fine with the amount in my B complex.

    Re your B12 - even though your blood levels are good, it does not necessarily mean that you have adequate B12 in your cells. Many of us have trouble properly metabolizing B12 in particular. For example, my B12 blood levels are always high because of the B12 supplement I take, but I have to take a lot to get any benefit from it. High B12 in the blood does not necessarily mean you are able to get it into the cells and actually use it. Just something to keep in mind and maybe explore further at some point.

    Re your nausea and heart racing after taking the B complex: it is possible that these were symptoms of low potassium. The folic acid and the B12 in the B complex might have stimulated methylation. Very often this will increase the need for potassium, and it generally happens pretty quickly - within 2 days or so. Here's more info on symptoms of low potassium: deficiency symptoms&oq=potassium deficiency symptoms&gs_l=psy-ab.3..0l10.1069375.1076245.0.1077718.

    If you get these symptoms again, I would try drinking several glasses of low-sodium V8 or low-sodium tomato juice which are high in potassium and see if it helps. When I started taking methylfolate 8 years ago, it felt great at first but within 2 days I had severe fatigue which was due to low potassium. Once I got my potassium levels back up I was able to continue with the methylfolate which helped me with energy. I still have to take extra potassium every day.

    I know this is probably way more than you wanted to know! But this is why taking one new thing at a time can be so important so that you can sort out what it does to you, good or bad. And then you can ask questions on the board here to see if other people react the same as you and what they do about it.

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