Folic Acid Facts

Vitamin B

Folic Acid Facts

Yet Another "B" Vitamin Powerhouse…

Folic acid - also known as folate, folacin, and pteroylglutamic acid, is yet another water-soluble B vitamin.

Over the years, folic acid has captured the attention of many people due to the amount of research studies that clearly reveals the many health benefits of this powerhouse nutrient.

Folic Acid Facts: Benefits of Folic Acid

Folic acid is famously known for its critical role in healthy fetal development. In this role, folic acid prevents devastating birth defects, including neural tube defects like spina bifida.

Folic acid is also a vital nutrient in protecting the heart from heart disease by controlling levels of homocysteine. It has been found that high levels of homocysteine are associated with an increased risk of atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries, due to an accumulation of deposits of fat and fibrous tissue called plaques). In this role, folic acid works very closely with its cousin's vitamin B6 and B12 to carry out this vital function.

The benefits of folic acid extends way beyond just pregnancy and heart disease as it is needed for the following:

  • Needed for energy production
  • Plays a role in the synthesis of DNA and RNA
  • Needed for the formation of red blood cells
  • Needed for proper cell division
  • Needed for a healthy nervous, digestive, and immune system

    Folic Acid Facts: Benefits of Folic Acid

    Clinical Uses of Folic Acid

    The principal clinical uses of folic acid supplementation are in the prevention and treatment of the following:

  • Neural tube defects
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Osteoporosis
  • Cervical dysplasia
  • Depression

    However, we would be remiss if we did not share with you that folic acid may prove to be useful in a host of other conditions such as:

    Acne, AIDS, Anemia, Cancer, Candidiasis, Canker sores (recurrent), Cataract, Constipation, Crohn’s disease, Diarrhea, Epilepsy, Fatigue, Gout, Hepatitis, Infertility, Parkinson’s disease, Periodontal disease, Restless legs syndrome, Seborrheic dermatitis, Senility, and Ulcerative colitis.

    Folic Acid Facts: Precautions and Daily Requirements

    Knowledge means power...get all the folic acid facts

    In general, high doses of folic acid are non-toxic in themselves, but they may mask vitamin B12 deficiency, which could be serious as it can cause permanent nerve damage. Most experts recommend daily dosages should not exceed 1,000 (mcg 1 mg).

    In fact, some experts recommend that folic acid supplementation should always include vitamin B12.

    Special Cautions: Oral contraceptives interfere with the absorption of folic acid, therefore, it is recommended that folic acid supplementation include other B-complex vitamins. Alcohol and certain medications can also play havoc on the absorption of folic acid. If you suffer from hormone-related cancer, or a seizure disorder, high prolonged doses of folic acid is not recommended.

    Side Note: We recommend that you always consult with your physician before taking any dietary supplements, especially the following people: * pregnant or nursing women * people on prescription medications * people who suffer from a health condition

    List below is what the University of Maryland Medical Center recommends:

    "Folic acid supplementation should always include Vitamin B12 supplementation (400 to 1000 mcg daily) because folic acid can mask an underlying vitamin B12 deficiency, which can cause permanent damage to the nervous system."

    Daily Recommended Allowance (Folic Acid)

  • 19 years and older: 400 mcg (RDA)
  • Pregnant women: 600 mcg (RDA)
  • Breastfeeding women: 500 mcg (RDA)

    Folic Acid Facts about Food Sources

    This nutrient is a powerhouse when consumed by the body, but when it comes to cooking and storage it loses many of its benefits.

    Much of folic acid is destroyed (50 percent or more) during cooking. Also, another drawback about this nutrient is that when vegetables are stored at room temperature it can lose 50 to 70 percent of their folic acid in two to three days.

    Therefore, we recommend that you refrigerate your fresh vegetables, and whenever possible, consume them raw. The vegetables that do require cooking should be stir-fried or steamed using a small amount of water.

    Folic Acid Best Food Sources: Organ meats, green leafy vegetables, broccoli, oranges, whole grains, asparagus, celery, beets, liver, legumes, cabbage, chickpeas, wheat germ, split peas, lentils, nuts, dates, avocados, and whole wheat.

    Folic Acid Facts: Tips on Choosing a Folic Acid Supplement

    Knowledge means Power...get all the folic acid facts

    1. Over the years, experts have learned that taking too much of certain vitamins is not healthy and can actually cause health problems, especially the B vitamins since they work as a team.

    In short, it is not recommended that you take a single B vitamin unless instructed by a physician.

    Every vitamin, mineral, or nutrient requires the help of another to keep our bodies functioning and its best.

    Therefore, to ensure you're getting enough folic acid and not too much, we recommend that you take a comprehensive multivitamin and mineral supplement from a reputable company.

    2. Dietary supplements are not strictly regulated in the U.S. and, as such, manufacturers do not have to guarantee the safety, effectiveness, or even the true content of their products.

    Although supplements should be labeled properly, many aren't, so what's stated on the label may not be in the container. The potency or purity may be inconsistent or misrepresented. Some products tested also contained very harmful contaminates! In fact, according to, the leading provider of independent test results states:

    "Testing by shows that one in four supplements in the United States lacks the promised ingredients or has other serious problems."

    Therefore, it's important that you only purchase your supplements from pharmaceutical GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) compliant facilities. These facilities follow the exact same rigorous standards that pharmaceutical prescription medications must adhere to - thus - it ensures stringent requirements.

    A Comprehensive Product

    Now that you know all about folic acid facts, want to reap its health benefits?

    One company that meets the above requirements -- and more -- is Xtend-Life Natural Products from New Zealand. Their flagship product called Total Balance contains over 70 specialized nutrients that the body needs for optimal 'whole' body health, including folic acid, vitamin B12, as well as other B vitamins, along with amino acids, specialty nutrients, herbal extracts, enzymes, minerals, potent antioxidants, and other vitamins.

    All of the ingredients are scientifically combined in a synergistic way to enhance and maximize the efficacy of each other.

    We have been taking Total Balance for several years now and can personally attest to its excellent results such as significantly more energy, vitality, and an improved sense of well being.

    We hope this webpage discussing folic acid facts was useful to you.

    To Your Health!

    The Editors

    Much more than Folic Acid Facts can be found at our Vitamin Information web-page

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