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[QUOTE=eniluap;4966510]Well, I really wish I knew the answer to your questions because I'm in a similar situation. My ferritin was last measured at 12 (low is 10) and my B12 at 199 (low is 180).

I've learned that numbers don't tell the whole story. The symptoms of a lot of nutritional deficiencies look the same. And even if you're looking at the right numbers, there's room for variation in the results.

Last year I was in a bad way with symptoms similar to the ones you are describing plus some others that are more specific to iron deficiency (food cravings, sore tongue, hair starting to fall out). My ferritin measured at 19. I took iron supplements, felt dramatically and immediately a whole lot better, got retested 3 months later and my ferritin had fallen to 15. One year later, after taking iron supplements for about 9 months in total, it's down to 12.

Recently, I started feeling worse again so went back to get checked and got the results I posted above. It was the first time I'd had my B12 levels checked. Currently I've decided to take the B12, but not any more iron.

Nerve damage caused by lack of B12 can be irreversible so I don't really want to take any chances with that.

With the iron, I am worried that my body is low on iron as a protective response to a chronic condition, although I have no way of knowing if this is correct, so it's a bit of a gamble.

BTW, if you want to get tested for celiac disease, you have to get it done before cutting gluten out of your diet, so bear that in mind.

I hope you find a medical person to talk this through with, even if they're a non specialist, it has to be a good idea so long as they are sympathic and willing to try and work out what's going on with you.[/QUOTE]

Thanks for replying.

Have you considered doing any tests to determine whether there are any underlying causes for your symptoms? I would really recommend this, especially if your diet is adequate.

Do you eat red meat? I am not sure whether taking extra B12 can increase ferritin or not. I read somewhere that it might, but it wasn't a credible source. I think you definitely should take action to increase your ferritin level - I understand your caution about supplement as I am the same, but maybe you could investigate whether you have any underlying conditions that are causing malabsorption (e.g. celiac). If you ran various tests and couldn't find anything and you are confident that is not due to diet, I would then probably resort to supplements because you don't want to risk causing damage.

Are you female? If so, do you have heavy periods? Perhaps you could try taking the contraceptive pill continuously for a few months to skip your period and see whether this changes your test result. It's just an idea.

Thanks for the tip about the celiac test. I did consider this, however I have read that the blood test and biopsy are not entirely reliable. I have already cut out gluten for the past 6 weeks or so (except for 3-4 occassions) so I am concerned if I took a test now the results would be inaccurate anyway. I read that genetic testing can be undertaken any time and that could definitely rule out the possibility of celiac. Having said that, I don't think I have celiac because I don't have any digestive issues with wheat. Perhaps I am sensitive to gluten, which wouldn't show up on a test anyway, but I'm really not sure.

I think it is wise to supplement your B12 to risk nerve damage. The only thing I would suggest is to consider getting a baseline urine MMA and homocysteine test before you start supplementing. Also, I have read that cyanocobalamin is not desirable and you should look at taking sublingual form of the 2 active types of b12 methyl and adeno. Maybe you should also get a test for pernicious anemia before you start supplementing, by testing your intrinsic factor and Parietal Cell antibodies.

One thing I am wondering is that if I supplement with B12, do I need to supplemetn with anything else? I have read that it should be combined with a b-complex at least (especially for the folate), however my folate is already so high I don't want to take any more. I am also considering whether i should take inositol with it. I am planning to cut out my multivitamin and just keep taking the fish oil with D plus the B vitamins, while eliminating gluten and then retest in a few months.

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