Vegan Tips: B12 / Soya

We recommend that vegans should do one of the following:

  • eat fortified foods two or three times a day to get at least three micrograms (mcg or ug) of B12 a day or
  • take one B12 supplement daily providing at least 10 micrograms or
  • take a weekly B12 supplement providing at least 2000 micrograms.

The less frequently you obtain B12 the more B12 you need to take, as B12 is best absorbed in small amounts. The recommendations above take full account of this. Absorption of B12 varies from about 50%, if about 1ug or less is consumed, to about 0.5% for doses of 1000ug (1 mg) or above, so 1mg would provide approximately 5ug of B12.

The Vegan Society’s Veg1 multivitamin contains 10ug vitamin B12 – 1000% of the EU RDA.

For more information see the Vegan Society’s Vitamin B12 page.

With regard to soya:

In 2002 the British Nutrition Foundation produced a comprehensive briefing paper entitled ‘Soya and Health’ which looked at the various health scares and claims surrounding this food. It concluded that ‘soya beans are a useful source of a range of nutrients and the beans themselves and foods derived from them can be useful components of a healthy diet.’ Naturally low in fat, soya is also rich in fibre and provides essential fatty acids, mostly omega-6 and some omega-3, as well as a variety of vitamins and minerals including iron, potassium and folic acid. A portion of soya counts towards the recommended five portions of fruits and vegetables per day.

For more information see the Vegan Society’s Soya and Health info page.

Based on email received 31 January 2011
from Sammy Keetley, Information Officer, The Vegan Society

Whilst this is good news for fans of Veggies Burgers, if you prefer to reduce your dependence on soya at other times, the Vegan Society has tips and recipes for soya-free vegan foods.

We can also recommend our soya-free Veggies Hemp Burgers and Veggies Hemp Burger Mix (available by mail order), hand-made by vegans from organic ingredients in Nottingham.


Veg1 from Veggies

Veg1Veg1 is the Vegan Society’s multivitamin, specifically formulated to meet the needs of vegans but suitable for everyone.

This supplement provides EU recommended daily allowances (RDAs) of Vitamin B2, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, Vitamin D, Folic Acid, Iodine and Selenium. It comes in bottles of 90 tablets which is a three month supply.

Veg1 contains:

Vitamin B2: 1.6 milligrams
Vitamin B6: 2 milligrams
Folic Acid: 200 micrograms
Vitamin B12: 10 micrograms
Vitamin D (as D2): 10 micrograms
Iodine: 150 micrograms
Selenium: 60 micrograms

Full ingredients list:

Sugar, Dextrose, Acacia, Selenomethionine (Selenium), Stearic Acid, Flavour (Blackcurrant), Ergocalciferol Preparation (D2), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (B6), Magnesium Stearate, Riboflavin (B2), PVP, Folacin (Folic Acid), Potassium Iodide (Iodine), Cyanocobalamin (B12)

The adult dose is one tablet per day. Children under 12 can take either one Veg1 tablet every two days, or half a Veg1 tablet every day. Veg1 is gluten-free and wheat-free and is suitable for pregnant women.

Product Info as at 1st Feb’11

Buy Now!

Veg1 multivitamin are available in blackcurrant or orange flavoured tabs:

£5 per 90

- from Veggies at the Sumac Centre

- at many good events (contact us in advance)

- by mail order. P&P (at Jan’11): 1 : £1.17 / 2 : £1.51 / 3-5 : £1.95.

Also available from the Vegan Society online shop or by phone on 0121 523 1731.



Stephen Walsh PhD, Science Coordinator of the International Vegetarian Union.and author of Plant Based Nutrition and Health (available from Veggies Bookstall) adds:

“There is extensive evidence that cyanocobalamin is as well absorbed as B12 from food and the amount in VEG 1 is well above the RDA and above average intake by Western omnivores.

“Soya has been covered in various articles in the past and I will be doing another one shortly for The Vegan. Soya is neither the health panacea claimed by some nor the poison claimed by others. I see no problem with moderate use of soya foods by vegans.”

Date: 13 February 2011 07:44