That would've been my first guess a few months ago if I heard someone say "B12."  That's not the case anymore. 

As you might know, I have been flirting with vegetarianism for awhile now. Though I have never officially committed and gone off "cold turkey," I don't eat very much meat. 

It has never really been that much of a problem -until this summer. 

Living in Chicago and running around on my own schedule (and humus and cheese sandwiches), made it very easy for me to avoid eating meat. It was great. I was still eating delicious foods (even at restaurants - like that vegan restaurant in Wicker Park. yum), getting plenty of exercise, and generally having an awesome time. 

But then weird things started happening. 

In August, I began to notice that my feet, ankles, hands and forearms were starting to get numb and tingling. I didn't really pay attention to it at first, since I thought it might have something to do with how dehydrated the city in summer seemed to make me. But it continued.

Eventually, it began to freak me out (especially once I started poking around on webmd.com - which is always a mistake because that website always convinces me I'm going to die soon). After one day spent around the city with the fear of passing out hanging over my head, I figured it was time to email my Uncle (who is a doctor) and ask, "what in the world is wrong with me?" 

Uncle John wrote back right away to my inquiry. 

"In general, B vitamins promote healthy nerves and with a vegetarian diet it can be harder to get adequate B vitamins.  Have you been eating eggs at least?"

(I assured him that I had been and was making no effort to be a vegan). 

"Still," he continued, "it should take more than a month for your body to start getting depleted enough that your nerves would start suffering. So it is a good idea to try your vitamins or you could even add to a multivitamin and take a B-complex vitamin too.  You can't really overdose on B-vitamins because they are water soluble." 

Later, when I went to the doctor back home in North Carolina, she told me the same thing. Vitamin B. 

I started taking b12 supplements shortly thereafter and generally started feeling better. 

But then I got lazy. 

It's been a weird week in regards to my exercising routine. The weird leg and hand thing is back and I feel like I am going to pass out/throw up when I work out. 


To make things even more complicated, I've recently switched to almond milk in my coffee (which is were I get most of my daily milk/dairy intake. It doesn't sound like a lot - but trust me, it's a lot). I eat a ton of dairy, and possibly been having some digestive issue because of that. So, last week, I bought a carton of almond milk to see if it would make a difference. So far, I believe that it has. Plus, the carton claims it was 50% more calcium than milk - that's a win. However, almond milk is not an animal product - and thus no b12.*

I need to work harder at striking a better nutritional balance in my eating habits. I don't want to go into it too much (as I am saving it for another blog topic), but my attempts at vegetarianism have thus far been pretty frustrating. I want to make better choices for myself and the environment, but right now my body seems to be taking the hit. 

In the meanwhile, I'm back to my b12 regiment. 


(*Update: I did check the almond milk this morning and apparently there is 50% of your daily b12 in a serving of almond milk. This makes me feel better - although only slightly since I am not sure if this really will do the trick...)