Cyanocobalamin (B12 variant) can produce acne; using methylcobalamin instead?


I’m a long time customer and subscriber, probably 8-9 years since my first order now, and my experience has been nothing but positive. Thank you for an excellent product!

I’ve noticed that I’ve started getting acne since upping my reliance on plenny drinks to breakfast and lunch every day. I have looked into some of the literature, and there seems to exist a reasonably significant body of research indicating that cyanocobalamine supplementation can cause acne in a subset of the population [1]. This also seems to be a well-known anecdotal fact in vegan communities, where affected persons are suggested to use the methylcobalamine B12 variant instead. I also notice that my acne subsides when I take breaks from plenny products for a while (mostly due to personal supply shortages).

The acne problem is growing to the point where I am unfortunately seriously reconsidering my use of plenny products, even though they have made my life so much easier.

Is there any chance of Jimmy Joy considering switching to methylcobalamin as a B12 ingredient instead of cyanocobalamin?

[1] One can use references [20-26] from this article as a starting point.

Hi @bfskinner

Sorry to hear you are experiencing some negative effects from the b12!

The way we choose our vitamins and minerals is based on the health effects and bioavailability. So how much of it is absorbed by the body. We also look at whether the vitamin is not from an animal source. Our company mission is to not use any animal-based products so that we have a healthier impact on the body and planet.

It is true that Methylcobalamin has better bioavailability, but it is mostly found in animal-based foods such as meat, fish, milk, and eggs. That makes it not possible for us to use :frowning:

I will make a note of your request and let our research department know. science is ever-evolving so perhaps they already have a vegan source of methylcobalamin on their list . Thanks for sharing the article. It has been forwarded.

By the way, we wrote an article on the bioavailability of all of our vitamins and minerals. You can find it here:

And their 172 health benefits:

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Hey @Nino, thank you for your reply! And for the explanation :slight_smile:

I don’t really know much about sources of methylcobalamin, but it would be very surprising if the only source was animal products seeing as how it’s a very common supplement among vegans.

Indeed, some googling confirms that there are vegan sources, but I don’t know if these for some reason aren’t usable in plenny products.

If you hear anything back from the team I would love to hear more about it :slight_smile:

Instead of considering giving up, have you considered gong back to the JJ level where acne wasn’t a problem previously.

There are other MRs that you could have along with JJ - for example JJ for Breakfast and another MR for lunch.

Thank you for the suggestion - I had honestly not even considered that option!

However, it might be difficult finding a MR that doesn’t use cyanocobalamin. (Perhaps it is cheaper than methylcobalamine? That would also explain why methyl variant supplements are more expensive.) Not sure if we’re allowed to mention competitors here, but both Huel and Yfood use cyanocobalamin.