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VITAMINS: Folate (Folic Acid)

Overview of Vitamins | Vitamin A (and Beta Carotene) | Biotin (Vitamin H) | Vitamin B-1 (Thiamin) | Vitamin B-2 (Riboflavin) | Vitamin B-3 (Niacin or Nicotinic Acid) | Vitamin B-5 (Pantothenic Acid) | Vitamin B-6 (Pyridoxine) | Vitamin B-12 (Cobalamin) | Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid) | Vitamin D | Vitamin E | Folate (Folic Acid) | Inositol | Choline


Folate (Folic Acid)

Functions of Folic acid

  • Is necessary for DNA & RNA synthesis, which is essential for the growth and reproduction of all body cells.
  • Is essential to the formation of red blood cells by its action on the bone marrow.
  • Aids in amino acid metabolism.

Deficiency of Folic acid

May result in gastrointestinal disorders, anemia, Vitamin B-12 deficiency, pre-mature gray hair

People with an increased risk of Folic acid deficiency

  • Heavy drinkers.
  • Pregnant women.
  • Women on the pill.
  • The elderly.

Clinical Uses of Folic acid

  • Women of child-bearing potential to reduce the number of pregnancies affected by a neural tube defect.
  • Very high doses of folic acid may counteract certain antiepileptic drugs.
  • When methotrexate (antifolate drug) is used in arthritis therapy, folate supplements often are used to lessen side effects.

Recommended dietary allowance for Folic acid

See Recommended dietary allowances for vitamins.

Food Sources of Folic acid

Brewer's yeast. Wheatgerm. Wheat bran. Green leafy vegetables. Liver. Peanuts. Almonds. Carrots. Cantaloupe melons. Apricots. Avocados. Beans. Beetroot. Broccoli. Citrus fruits. Free range eggs.

Toxicity of Folic acid

It is only reported after massive doses (nonphysiological doses) given by injection including neuro- and nephrotoxicity.