Date: 19-Sep-2019

Industry experts contest FSSAI ban on methylcobalamin in Gujarat

Pharmaceutical consultant Dr Sanjay Agrawal has contested Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) ban on methylcobalamin in Gujarat. Though the notification on ban was issued on June 11, 2019, FSSAI also released a list of 73 approved formulations which included methylcobalamin taking manufacturers by surprise. As of today, FSSAI regulation has listed two forms of vitamin B12 namely methylcobalamin and cyanocobalamin which are widely available in the Indian market. Cyanocobalamin a form of vitamin B12 is cheap, synthetic, mild toxic and an inactive form of B12 not absorbed well orally and is converted to methylcobalamin after 48 hours of entering into body where only a small amount is converted. Methylcobalamin is a naturally found ingredient in food sources like fish, meat, eggs and milk. It bypasses several phases of absorption cycle and helps reverse symptoms. Cyanocobalamin takes a lot of effort to reduce it to the active form; hence cyanocobalamin absorption varies greatly between individuals. Methylcobalamin is better utilized and is direct active form. It is around 2.5 times more potent and less amount is excreted in the urine than cyanocobalamin so more amount stays in the body for a long time.