Aug 22, 2011

Facts about Folic Acid

Folic Acid (or Vitamin B9) is a vitamin that's extremely important for overall health, but a lack of it is one of the most common nutritional deficiencies there is.
Your level might be low if...

If your diet is lacking in certain vegetables, you have celiac's disease, are obese, an alcoholic, or are pregnant or breastfeeding, you might be prone to deficiency.  The elderly have an increased risk as well. 


Some symptoms of low levels of Folic Acid can include: Diarrhea, headaches, weakness, appetite loss, thinning hair\hair loss, insomnia, dry skin, weight loss, paranoia, irritability and depression. 

Recommended allowances:
The recommended dietary allowance about 400 mcg\day, but can vary from person to person - especially women.  For example, women who are planning a pregnancy or are breastfeeding should take in a little more than the average adult.  

Can I get too much?
Since Vit. B9 is water soluble, any excess is usually flushed out of the body, so the risk of toxicity is low.  However, if a patient is taking anti- convulsant medication, there is evidence that extreme levels of the vitamin can produce seizures, so those patients should be sure to check with their doctor before taking any supplement!  As a general rule, you shouldn't consume more than 1000 mcg a day.

The best way to get in a good dose of the ol' Folate is so eat a diet full of different kinds of vegetables (especially green leafy ones!), and a take a multivitamin.

What really brought this post on is that I've been having a few symptoms of low levels, so I've started taking a supplement...I'll give it a month or two and I'll let you know if I see a difference!

Do you take any supplements? If you do, what do you take?
I usually try to take a multivitamin, and now a Folic Acid supplement. 

{I've just been able to quickly pop online here, but we made it to Malawi safely! We just got back from spending 3 days in the village doing a seminar for ladies - can't wait to get back and tell all about it and show pictures!!}


  1. Glad you made it to Malawi safely. Thanks for the reminder about Folic Acid--it's not something I track often, but I should!

  2. Glad you made it safely!! Cannot wait to see pics!! Good to know on the Folic Acid - I eat a lot of salads and green veggies, but I definitely can sense some of those symptoms when my diet is off!

  3. Amen for you making it there okay. Folic acid is something I never thing about. Oops. But I do love my leafy greens! Can't wait to see your pics :)


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