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How Much Vitamin B12 Per Day

How much vitamin B12 per day you need depends on multiple factors. Adults need around 1.5µg (micrograms) of B12 daily, but it can be difficult to absorb from food or tablets. Learn more about dosage, how much you need & how to improve intake.

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What Are the Signs of Low Vitamin B12?

Without sufficient intake of vitamin B12 per day, you may be at risk of developing vitamin B12 deficiency. Insufficient levels of vitamin B12 can lead to health problems and side effects which could detrimentally affect your life. Some common signs of low vitamin B12 include:

  1. Tiredness and fatigue
  2. Glossitis (sore and red tongue)
  3. Paler skin than usual
  4. Unbalanced mood
  5. Pins and needles
  6. Difficulty concentrating and brain fog

Signs and symptoms can vary from person to person and are often not exclusive to vitamin B12 deficiency. However, they can give an indication that you aren’t getting enough B12 per day and that you may need vitamin B12 supplements. Some groups may be more at risk than others, and these are detailed below.

How Much Vitamin B12 Do You Need Per Day?

The recommended daily intake of B12 per day varies as you age. Below the guidelines highlight the varying levels recommended to different ages and groups in order to see the benefits of vitamin B12.


How Much B12 Per Day? (µg - micrograms)

Children (0-6 months)


Children (7-12 months)


Children (1-3 years)


Children (4-8 years)


Children (9-13 years)


Children (14-18 years)


Adults (19+ years)


Older Adults (60+ years)





BetterYou’s Vitamin B12 Oral Spray delivers 1,200μg (micrograms) which is higher than the Nutrient Reference Value (NRV) recommendations because it is designed to increase levels if deficient. As vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin, any excess that you don’t need is excreted through urine so having high levels is rare.

The recommended levels for varying groups are:


The NHS recommends adults aged 19 to 64 need about 1.5μg (micrograms) of vitamin B12 per day.

Although how much vitamin B12 needed per day is largely the same for a man or woman, those pregnant or breastfeeding may require higher levels to support them during this time.

Older Adults

Older adults may be more at risk of B12 deficiency, and therefore require more B12 per day than younger adults. B12 requires stomach acid to be broken down, and as you age your stomach lining struggles to retain the ability to produce this acid.

This clinical trial recommends that people aged over 50 with poor vitamin B12 status should intake 500µg (micrograms) of crystalline vitamin B12 per day to help restore low levels.

Using an oral spray supplement bypasses the digestive system and is absorbed directly into the bloodstream. Therefore, it does not require gastric acid or enzymes for initial digestion.


The Vegan Society recommends those following a vegan or plant-based diet take supplements daily providing at least 10µg (micrograms) of B12 per day. The main source of B12 is animal-based products, and so it is one of the supplements vegans should take to avoid missing out.


The NIH recommends that children need a varying intake of B12 per day as they grow:

  • Birth to 6 months: 0.4µg
  • 7–12 months: 0.5µg
  • 1–3 years: 0.9µg
  • 4–8 years: 1.2µg
  • 9–13 years: 1.8µg
  • 14–18 years: 2.4µg

Can You Test If You Have Enough Vitamin B12?

Fortunately, there is a way to identify if you are obtaining enough vitamin B12 per day through diet or supplements. A simple blood test can determine your levels of the nutrient and highlight if you need to increase your intake.

With BetterYou, testing for B12 deficiency is straight-forward and can be completed from the comfort of your own home. Our at-home vitamin B12 test analyses the levels of vitamin B12 in your blood through a blood sample. The test identifies the biomarker active B12, and this helps to determine how much of this vitamin is present in your bloodstream.

  1. Order your at-home health test kit online.
  2. Provide a blood sample by filling a small vial using a quick prick of the finger once your test arrives.
  3. Send your sample to our UKAS accredited lab partners using the pre-paid envelope. They analyse your sample.
  4. Receive your results via email within 5 working days of the lab receiving your sample.
  5. After your results have been sent we’ll provide a bespoke supplementation plan to help you increase or maintain your vitamin B12 levels.

We work in partnership with UKAS accredited labs to analyse our at-home tests. Our B12 test is provided in collaboration with our trusted partners at Medichecks.

When to Supplement Vitamin B12?

Supplements can help you obtain sufficient levels of B12 per day, and help to restore your nutrient levels if you have identified low levels after a B12 test. Vitamin B12 supplements should be considered because the nutrient is notoriously difficult to absorb in the gut from diet or tablet supplements. If you are unlikely to include food sources rich in B12 in your diet, you should also consider supplementation.

BetterYou’s Vitamin B12 Oral Spray delivers 1200μg (micrograms) of B12 per day to help you reach the recommended intake. The B12 spray contains the most bioavailable form of B12 (methylcobalamin) which is a naturally active form found within human metabolism.

Our oral spray vitamins are sprayed into the mouth for hassle-free supplementation, and effective absorption into the bloodstream. They do not need to be taken with food or water, and you can supplement at any time of the day and combine with our other pill-free supplements.

When Should You See Your Doctor?

It isn’t always easy to know when you should consult your doctor for health problems or potential deficiencies. Ultimately, if you’re concerned, you should seek medical help or reassurance if you are exhibiting symptoms, have not increased your levels, or are one of the at-risk groups.

You’re Experiencing the Symptoms of Deficiency

If you experience the symptoms of deficiency, it may mean you are not getting enough vitamin B12 per day. Therefore, you should either test your levels at home, or consult your doctor who may arrange a test for you. It is important for B12 deficiency to be diagnosed and treated as soon as possible in order to avoid harmful side effects and ensure you get the right amount of vitamin B12 per day.

You Have Tested Your Levels

After testing your nutrient levels you may be recommended supplements for how much vitamin B12 per day you require. If your symptoms do not go away, or you re-test and your levels have not increased you should consult your doctor.

You Are At-Risk of Deficiency

If you are concerned about how much vitamin B12 you can obtain per day, you should consult your doctor or medical professional. There are some groups who may be more at risk, and need to be certain they obtain the right level of B12 per day.

You should potentially see your doctor about your B12 intake if:

  • You are aged 60+ - If you are aged 60+, it is important to be aware of how much vitamin B12 per day is included in your nutritional intake. B12 requires stomach acid to be broken down, and as you age your stomach lining struggles to retain the ability to produce this acid.
  • You are vegan - Vegans or those with dietary restrictions or allergies may be more at risk. If you reduce the intake of meats and other animal products in your diet you may not obtain enough vitamin B12 per day and may require a vegan supplement.
  • You have digestive issues - The B12 you obtain per day from food or traditional tablet supplements is absorbed in the small intestine. Those with digestive issues such as IBS, IBD, Crohns, or coeliac disease may struggle to absorb the vital nutrient.
  • You have Pernicious Anaemia - This autoimmune condition affects your stomach lining, meaning your body struggles to break down food and allow you to obtain enough vitamin B12 per day. It is one of the primary causes of low B12 levels in the UK and supplements may be used to help support pernicious anaemia treatment.
  • You take certain medications - Some anti-seizure medicines, colchicine, H2-receptor antagonists, metformin, and proton pump inhibitors can cause a higher risk of low levels. This means you may not be able to obtain enough vitamin B12 per day from food or tablet supplements.

If you are in any of these risk groups and are concerned about your vitamin B12 levels, you should consult your Doctor. They may arrange a blood test for you and could recommend a B12 injection or supplements.

Supplementing with BetterYou

At BetterYou, we pioneered pill-free formulas for effective supplementation. They have been tested through Cardiff and Sheffield Universities, and can support a healthy lifestyle. From vitamin D supplements for strong bones, to magnesium supplements to help you sleep, find hassle-free nutrition now.

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