Vitamin B12: Pain Fighter

When we think of pain-relieving nutrients, we usually think about curcumin from turmeric, boswellia, white willow bark, or some other herbal ingredient. But a form of vitamin B12 called methylcobalamin, can help stop pain, too.

Vitamin B12 is essential for healthy nerve cells, so it has been investigated for stopping neuropathy and other pain-related symptoms of type 2 diabetes. However, other work has found that the methylcobalamin form of vitamin B12 also relieves neuralgia and lower back pain, in part, by inhibiting pain-carrying signals in the body.

The form of B12 is key. Methylcobalamin is an active form of B12. That means that it doesn’t require conversion by the liver in order to perform its many tasks in the body. Some people have a difficult time converting cyanocobalamin form of B12, which is the type frequently found in many supplements. To get the most from B12 it pays to look for a supplemental source that provides it in the methylcobalamin form.


Zhang M, Han W, Hu S, Xu H. Methylcobalamin: a potential vitamin of pain killer. Neural Plast. 2013;2013:424651.

Methylcobalamin (MeCbl), the activated form of vitamin B12, has been used to treat some nutritional diseases and other diseases in clinic, such as Alzheimer's disease and rheumatoid arthritis. As an auxiliary agent, it exerts neuronal protection by promoting regeneration of injured nerves and antagonizing glutamate-induced neurotoxicity. Recently several lines of evidence demonstrated that MeCbl may have potential analgesic effects in experimental and clinical studies. For example, MeCbl alleviated pain behaviors in diabetic neuropathy, low back pain and neuralgia. MeCbl improved nerve conduction, promoted the regeneration of injured nerves, and inhibited ectopic spontaneous discharges of injured primary sensory neurons. This review aims to summarize the analgesic effect and mechanisms of MeCbl at the present.

Here is the link to the complete study: Methylcobalamin: A Potential Vitamin of Pain Killer

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Terry is happy to provide his opinion on diet and nutrition, supplements and lifestyle choices. This information is for educational purposes only. It is not meant to replace the advice of your physician and is not to be considered medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Should you have any concerns please contact your physician directly.

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