Vitamin B12 in treatment of neuropathy?

by Penny
(Bradford, Ontario Canada)

Can you please tell me if there is a relationship between vit B 12 deficiency & neuropathy? I have foot drop in my right foot due to spinal stenosis. Starting to get numbness in my left foot which is being attributed to aging (I am 66). Have had nerve conduction testing. Numbness is both sides of leg to knee so doctor does not think it is related to my spinal stenosis. I started vegan diet 6 months ago - no animal protein including dairy.

I am also recently experiencing fatigue+++, increased memory loss, etc which started me investigating B12 deficiency. I am starting on oral methyl cobalamin. Do you think this will have a positive impact on my numbness in my left foot? Any suggestions? I have orthotics plus an AFO on my right foot now. Would like to maintain as much sensation in my left foot for as long as possible.
Many thanks

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Read My Peripheral Neuropathy page
by: Kerri Knox, Registered Nurse

Hi Penny,

Please read my page on Peripheral Neuropathy where I discuss this issue. Also be sure to read my extensive pages on Gluten Sensitivity since gluten is a BIG cause of neurologic problems and since you've been a vegan, you are probably consuming much larger amounts of gluten than you were prior to becoming vegan.

Also, while a few people will thrive on a vegan diet, I actually don't recommend it and find that the vast majority of people simply do not do well on a vegan or even a vegetarian diet- especially since grains are implicated in many health problems. The diet that I finds benefits the most people the majority of the time is the Paleo Diet or the Weston Price Diet.

So, since you seem to be getting worse on a vegan diet, or at least not getting better, unless you have a moral aversion to animals or animal products, I would suggest that you give a Paleo Diet a try and see how you feel. If you are unsure where or how to start, please get the book The Healthy Urban Kitchen to get you started.

Or better yet, get the entire educational product Real Food Summit and find out why you may have been causing worse problems with what you have been taught is a good diet. You'll not only get extensive lectures and educational resources, but you'll get meal plans to get you started as well. I hope that this helps.

Kerri Knox, Registered Nurse

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