Vitamin B-12 shots provide an essential nutrient for those who can't absorb it through food, says Mayo Clinic. Vitamin B-12 injections have been touted for their weight loss benefits, but there is no proof that this is true.
Common causes of vitamin B-12 deficiency include atrophic gastritis, pernicious anemia, weight loss surgery, Crohn's disease and celiac disease. Heavy drinking, immune system disorders and long-term use of acid-reducing drugs can also cause deficiencies, according to WebMD. Insufficient vitamin B-12 levels can cause severe neurological problems and blood diseases, according to Harvard Health Publications.
While many weight loss organizations use vitamin B-12 injections as a part of the overall weight loss solution, this trend is not something based on solid science, says Mayo Clinic. The increase in energy and metabolism is likely only true if the individual already has a vitamin B-12 deficiency.
Most healthy individuals get sufficient levels of B vitamins from foods such as meat, fish, eggs and dairy products, according to WebMD. Because it is a water-soluble vitamin, extra vitamin B-12 doesn't hurt most people. However, vitamin B-12 interacts poorly with some medications, so anyone considering lipotropic vitamin B-12 shots should talk to her doctor first, suggests Mayo Clinic.