The Role of B Vitamins in Methylation and Your Overall Health

Methylation takes place approximately one billion times per second and affects nearly every process in the body.[1] But when this vital process is not optimized, your physical and mental health can be impacted. So if you’re interested in learning how to support the foundation of your health, you can’t overlook methylation and the role of B vitamins.



What is methylation?

Methylation is one of the most important chemical reactions in the body, which occurs when four atoms – one carbon atom and three hydrogen atoms (CH3) – are transferred from one substance to another, effectively methylating or activating the receiving molecule.[2]

In general, methylation helps regulate gene expression, maintain the stability and integrity of DNA, and control other molecules in the body, such as proteins, lipids, hormones, and neurotransmitters.



Methylation – A Quick Review

  • Methylation plays a critical role in regulating gene expression and cellular function, which help regulate the activity of the cardiovascular, neurological, and reproductive systems.
  • Poor methylation can be impacted by several factors, including age, environment, nutrition, lifestyle, genetics, and diseases.
  • Symptoms of poor methylation can include low levels of neurotransmitters, histamine intolerances, fatigue, mood disorders, allergies and sensitivities, cognitive impairment, heart disease and stroke, various types of cancers, and neurological diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s, and multiple sclerosis.
  • Over methylation describes a metabolic condition characterized by excessive methylation activity in the body.
  • Symptoms of over methylation can include anxiety and panic, depression, hyperactivity and behavioral issues, allergies and sensitivities, and histamine imbalance.
  • If you suspect you have poor methylation or are experiencing symptoms, consult with your healthcare providers. If you are diagnosed with undermethylation, your provider may recommend dietary changes, supplements, lifestyle adjustments, or medications to help.



Why is methylation important?

Methylation enables a host of systems in our body to turn the necessary biological switches on and off. It’s similar to the torque required to rotate gears in a machine. Without methylation and the opposite biochemical reaction, demethylation, numerous body systems would be unable to function correctly, just as the gears in a machine would stop rotating without torque.

Optimal methylation can have a significant impact on many biochemical reactions in the body that regulate the activity of the cardiovascular, neurological, and reproductive systems, including those related to

  • Detoxification [3]
  • Hormone metabolism [4]
  • Neurotransmitter production [5]
  • Histamine metabolism [6]
  • Cellular energy [7]
  • Growth and development [8]
  • DNA production and genetic expression [9]
  • Liver health [10]

Even though methylation seems like a relatively simple biochemical process (the transfer of a methyl group), it has a far-reaching impact on the body and plays a crucial role in many aspects of cellular function, development, and disease. And dysregulation of the methylation cycle has been associated with several health problems, including neurological disorders, cardiovascular disease, problems with detoxification, and cancer. [11] [12]



What is the methylation cycle?

A basic understanding of the methylation cycle can be helpful before diving deeper into methylation and B vitamins – I promise, no chemistry degree is required.

As previously mentioned, the methylation cycle is a series of biochemical reactions in the cells. When these reactions occur, they produce a molecule called S-adenosylmethionine, known as SAM-e.[13] SAM-e is involved in transferring methyl groups to a wide range of molecules, including DNA, RNA, proteins, and other metabolites.

Several enzymes tightly regulate the methylation cycle, including folate, vitamins B6, B12, B2, choline, and betaine. These nutrients are required to produce SAM-e and break down homocysteine into other chemicals your body needs.

Unfortunately, the system producing SAM-e relies on 5-MTHF, a critical B vitamin known as active or methyl folate, to be turned on. If there is enough 5-MTHF present, the methylation cycle will work effectively. Still, when the methylation switch is turned off and not creating enough SAM-e, numerous important molecules cannot be efficiently produced.

The MTHFR gene mutation’s importance lies in its impact on converting folate to active 5-MTHF, which is essential for the methylation cycle. Insufficient 5-MTHF can hinder the production of SAM-e, leading to a deficiency of vital molecules. However, the significance of the mutation can vary based on individual factors such as dietary folate intake and compensatory mechanisms in the body, as well as the interaction of other gene variants.


B Vitamins B12

Essential Nutrients for Methylation

Now that you understand that the methylation process depends on several nutrients to function correctly, let’s further break down those essential nutrients for methylation. These essential nutrients include

Active Folate (5-MTHF). Active folate, also known as methyl folate, is a form of folate that is ready to be used by the body to synthesize SAM-e in addition to other biochemical processes.[14]

Vitamin B12. Vitamin B12 is involved in converting homocysteine to methionine, an essential amino acid necessary for producing SAM-e.[15] There are multiple kinds of B12, such as methylcobalamin, hydroxocobalamin, adenosylcobalamin, and cyanocobalamin.  Methylcobalamin is helpful as it provides the methyl group, but some people do better with other forms of B12.

Vitamin B6. It is required to produce methionine, necessary for creating SAM-e, and is involved in developing glutathione, an important antioxidant.[16]

Vitamin B2. Also known as Riboflavin, it is required to convert folate to its active form, which is necessary for methylation.[17]

Magnesium. Magnesium is a mineral that is involved in the conversion of methionine to SAM-e.[18]

Betaine. Betaine is a methyl donor that can help support methylation in the absence of adequate folate or vitamin B12.[19]

Choline. Choline is a nutrient involved in the production of SAM-e and can help support methylation, and is found in choline-rich foods like eggs.[20]

Zinc. Zinc is a mineral required for the activity of many enzymes involved in the methylation process.[21]


broken DNA

What causes suboptimal methylation?

Suboptimal methylation is the partial or incomplete methylation of DNA, which can occur due to several factors, including:

  • Dysfunction or mutation of enzymes involved in the methylation process.
  • Environmental factors.
  • Lifestyle factors.
  • Genetic factors

Suboptimal methylation is a complex and multifactorial process unique to each individual. However, many patients benefit from MethylForce Plus, a dynamic product that supports methylation by providing a high-dose vitamin B blend, Trimethylglycine, and SAMe in one supplement.


B Vitamins B7

The Role of B Vitamins in Methylation and Your Overall Health

We now understand that B vitamins are essential in methylation, and their deficiency can lead to suboptimal methylation. Let’s take a step back and consider the role of B vitamins for methylation and our overall health.

Why do we need B Vitamins?

B vitamins, a group of water-soluble vitamins, are involved in various metabolic pathways, including energy production, brain function, blood sugar regulation, and overall metabolism, in addition to helping maintain our nerve health and regulate our stress.[22]

Here are some additional ways that B vitamins support a healthy body.

  • Convert carbohydrates to energy
  • Help maintain healthy skin and eyes
  • Aid in the production of dopamine and serotonin
  • Involved in the formation of red blood cells
  • Important for cell growth and division

Overall, B vitamins are essential for many aspects of our health and for maintaining many bodily functions, including methylation. And when a vitamin B deficiency occurs, it can result in suboptimal methylation.[23]

Should you take a methylated B vitamin?

Methylated B vitamins are forms of B vitamins already in a bioavailable and metabolically active form.[24] These B vitamins are more easily absorbed and utilized by the body than non-methylated forms, which need to be converted to their active forms in the body.

Methylated B vitamins may benefit individuals with genetic variations affecting their ability to metabolize and utilize specific B vitamins, including those with the MTHFR genetic variant.

I recommend using a comprehensive B vitamin complex like MethylB Complex that features a wide range of B vitamins, including folate, B6, and B12, to support optimal energy production and cellular health. Before starting new supplements, I recommend talking with your healthcare provider to ensure they are safe and effective.

Benefits of Methylated B Vitamins

There are numerous benefits that methylated B vitamins provide, including

  • Improved absorption and utilization
  • Support for optimal methylation
  • Help enhance mood and cognitive function
  • May decrease your risk for cardiovascular disease
  • Prevent neural tube defects in developing fetuses

The research on the many benefits of methylated B vitamins is still ongoing, and more studies are needed to understand their effects on our health fully. But we know not consuming adequate amounts of bioavailable B vitamins can interfere with your body’s methylation process.

Maximizing Methylation: A Key to Achieving Optimal Health

Proper methylation influences many essential bodily functions. Methylation is needed to produce amino acids, neurotransmitters, hormones, red blood cells, DNA, and antioxidants; detoxify hormones and toxins; and for gene expression.

It’s kind of a big deal!

And we can’t forget about the importance of B vitamins. Without adequate intake of B vitamins, your methylation process would be suboptimal.

But your physical and mental health suffers when your methylation process or B vitamin absorption is compromised.

The good news is that you can achieve optimal health by maximizing your methylation, and the team at The Spring Center is here to help. We help you seek the answers you desire and provide the solutions you need to live a vibrant, healthy life.

Get started as a new patient today, or visit our online store to view our methylation support products and much more!


books in library


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  2. “Methylation – National Human Genome Research Institute.” 16 Feb. 2023, Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  3. “Modulation of Metabolic Detoxification Pathways Using Foods and ….” Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  4. “Metabolic, hormonal and immunological associations with global ….” Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  5. “Metabolic, hormonal and immunological associations with global ….” Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  6. “Histamine N-Methyltransferase in the Brain – PMC – NCBI.” 10 Feb. 2019, Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  7. “How DNA methylation affects the Warburg effect – PMC – NCBI.” 27 Apr. 2020, Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  8. “Childhood growth and development and DNA methylation age in ….” 9 Aug. 2021, Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  9. “The Role of Methylation in Gene Expression – Nature.” Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  10. “DNA Methylation in Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease – PMC – NCBI.” Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  11. “The Role of DNA Methylation in Cardiovascular Risk and Disease.” Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  12. “The Role of DNA Methylation in Cancer – PMC – NCBI.” 6 Aug. 2020, Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.


  1. “DNA Methylation and Its Basic Function – PMC – NCBI.” Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  2. “Folate and DNA Methylation: A Review of Molecular Mechanisms ….” 5 Jan. 2012, Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  3. “The effects of S-adenosyl-L-methionine-vitamin B complex on mild ….” Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  4. “Genome-wide Association Study of Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, Folate ….” Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  5. “Riboflavin supplementation alters global and gene-specific DNA ….” Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  6. “Magnesium basics – PMC – NCBI.” Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  7. “DNA Methylation – PMC – NCBI.” Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  8. “Choline, Other Methyl-Donors and Epigenetics – PMC – NCBI.” 29 Apr. 2017, Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
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  11. “Role of B vitamins in biological methylation.” Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.
  12. “Vitamin B12 – Health Professional Fact Sheet.” 22 Dec. 2022, Accessed 21 Feb. 2023.