AIDS and Vitamin B12 Deficiency

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There are new studies that show that people with AIDS usually have a vitamin B12 deficiency.  Furthermore, AIDS victims who are B12 deficient suffer more than those who are not B12 deficient.

AIDS is the acronym for Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome.  It weakens the immune system, leaving its victims prone to various infections.  The root of this is HIV, acronym for Human Immunodeficiency Virus.

Vitamin B12 is found naturally in meat, fish, eggs and dairy products.  This vitamin is absolutely vital for nerve development.  Without this vitamin, the nerve cells don’t form properly, and the electrical impulses go haywire.  Symptoms of a B12 deficiency include memory loss, depression, fatigue, numbness and tingling of extremities, dizziness and paralysis.

There have been several studies on the relationship between a vitamin B12 deficiency and AIDS.  Researchers at John Hopkins University found that people with a deficiency in vitamin B12 or vitamin A had a faster progression of AIDS symptoms than those without this deficiency. 

About one-third of people with AIDS are B12 deficient.  It’s possible that they don’t absorb vitamin B12 well due to their diarrhea symptoms.  It’s also possible that AIDS patients have reduced hydrochloric acid and intrinsic factor in their stomachs, preventing them from assimilating this vitamin into their bloodstream.

The symptoms of AIDS are strikingly similar to those of a B12 deficiency.  One-third of AIDS victims suffer from neuropathy, which is a burning tingling of the hands or feet.  There is a strong possibility that the root of this neuropathy is a vitamin B12 deficiency. In addition, late-stage victims of AIDS are known to develop dementia, another symptom that correlates to a B12 deficiency.

Until any research can prove conclusive, it is recommended that people suffering from AIDS should supplement their diets with Vitamin B12.