Should you take a vitamin B12 supplement?

You may need a little or a lot of B12, but it's worth investigating.

Published: April, 2020

Annie Oakley, the larger-than-life sharpshooter and star of Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, was cut down by an invisible foe: a deadly form of anemia caused by a lack of vitamin B12.

Back in Annie's day, we didn't know B12 existed or that deficiency could lead to dangerous consequences (for Annie, it was death in 1926). It wasn't until later in the 20th century that scientists discovered B12 and how to use it as a treatment.

To continue reading this article, you must log in.
  • Research health conditions
  • Check your symptoms
  • Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
  • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
  • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
Learn more about the many benefits and features of joining Harvard Health Online »