Folic Acid Sources and Supplementation

Fortunately, many people (yes, and this includes you!) are now aware of the importance of folic acid in the body.

So, the next question to ask will be: what are some folic acid sources that I should eat more of? Luckily for us, folic acid sources are naturally abundant in the foods that we eat. If you are a healthy eater (whose diets include good amounts of fruits and vegetables) who have regular needs, you will most probably not be at risk of folic acid deficiency.

Why is folic acid important anyway?

Folic acid is an essential vitamin that is needed by our body for cell growth and division, DNA replication and protein synthesis in all cells. Folic acid deficiency can lead to many different diseases and disorders which include heart attacks, colon cancer, depression, dementia, hearing loss, as well as cleft lip and palate and neural tube defects in babies.

Folic Acid Foods: Foods Rich in Folic Acid

Foods containing folic acid include green leafy vegetables such as spinach, citrus fruits (such as oranges and avocados), fortified breakfast cereals, broccoli, enriched breads and pastas. Other sources of folic acid include grains, beans, peas, cantaloupe, and peanut butter.

How much folic acid do you need?

For adults, the regular recommended dietary allowance is at 0.4 mg/day and about 0.6 mg/day for pregnant women. For those who are folic acid deficient, dosage recommendations vary from 0.4 mg to 10 mg, depending on how sever the deficiency is, and how serious the health problem is.

Folic Acid Supplementation

Although it is true that there are foods high in folic acid, it is difficult to get adequate amounts of this vitamin from folic acid-containing foods alone. The body seems to absorb more folic acid from the multivitamins that we take rather than the ones found naturally in foods with folic acid.

Unfortunately, about 88% of the American population suffer from one form of folic acid deficiency, obviously indicating that our standard diet of foods with folic acid may not well supply as much folic acid that we need. In fact, not many people eat enough amounts of vegetables and cooking destroys about half of the folate that is found in the food.

As such, taking of additional amounts of folic acid should be necessary for those who need more supply of it - such as pregnant women and those who are deficient. If you belong to either of the two categories, you have to take supplements on top of foods rich in folic acid. However, you should also know that for folic acid to work best and get fully absorbed by your body, it needs catalysts such as B12 and B6 combined with your folic acid supplement.

Expert Advice

We have encountered many folic acid supplements in the market, but so far, the one that we can most highly recommend is Xtend-Life's Total Balance. It contains folic acid synergistically combined with other B vitamins, minerals and herbs to enhance the effect of folic acid in the body. With only just a few pennies a day, you can protect yourself from possible diseases and serious ailments in the future.

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