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REAL folate is much better than folic acid - Page 3

post #41 of 126
Is it me or did the thread's title change?
post #42 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by WaitingForKiddos View Post
Is it me or did the thread's title change?
It changed. I actually saw it in New Posts and thought is was a X-post, then I started reading and all the replies were the same
post #43 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by TanyaLopez View Post
I _think_ there are a few other companies that make multis, I'm just not sure of the names. Anyone know the others?
New Chapter Prenatal uses a whole food folate. I emailed the company directly to ask them about it and was quite reassured by the response I received.
post #44 of 126
So, I have a question (because I knew that I should have been taking 5-MTFH rather than folic acid but it fell through the cracks in my mindful prenatal supplement planning)...is there a "critical point" past which the opportunity to benefit from it is lost (or severely minimized)? I recall that earlier research promoted the use of "folic acid" as being most important prior to conception and within the first few weeks after conception. I'm just about 30 weeks at this point and I'm wondering if it's too late to boost 5-MTFH at this point or if it's still helpful throughout pregnancy/BFing.

My DD#1 has midline issues, some sensory sensitivities, etc. My DD#2 has a sacral dimple, my niece has a tongue tie, and my nephew has autism, in addition to family histories of autoimmune ssues of various types. I supplement with B-12 sublingual, D3, Omega 3, calcium/magnesium, probiotics, floradix (iron) and liquid zinc sulphate as needed (to taste) in addition to Nature's Plus Source of Life Prenatal. I think I'd probably add on 1 Metagenics FolaPro/day and reduce my Prenatal to 1/day vs. 2/day. It would leave me with 800mg. 5-MTFH and 400mg. folic acid. I'd keep the prenatal at the 1/2 dose for the other things in it that I want to get, but I don't want to switch to any of the other prenatals that have a better source of folate because they all contain copper as well and I don't want to take any copper (I don't respond well to it, and my DD#1 had major zinc/copper imbalance issues, so I generally avoid copper like the plague). Any thoughts?
post #45 of 126
Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by WuWei
Birth defects often occur due to the absence of adequate food folate, generally not the absence of synthetic B9 (folic acid),
Interesting. Do you have a peer-reviewed source for this statement?
Quote:
Originally Posted by WuWei View Post
Role of parental folate pathway single nucleotide polymorphisms in altering the susceptibility to neural tube defects in South India.

Variants of folate metabolism genes and the risk of conotruncal cardiac defects.

The methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase gene variant (C677T) as a susceptibility gene for tetralogy of Fallot.

Genetics of human neural tube defects.

MTHFR C677T polymorphism as a risk factor of neural tube defects in Malay: a case control study.

High milk consumers have an increased risk of folate receptor blocking autoantibody production but this does not affect folate status in Spanish men and women.

Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase deficiency and low dietary folate increase embryonic delay and placental abnormalities in mice.

[A case-control study on the risk factors of neural tube defects in Shanxi province]

Genetic and biochemical determinants of serum concentrations of monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, a potential neural tube defect risk factor.

Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase, common polymorphisms, and relation to disease.

Methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) gene polymorphisms resulting in suboptimal oocyte maturation: a discussion of folate status, neural tube defects, schizophrenia, and vasculopathy.

Has enhanced folate status during pregnancy altered natural selection and possibly Autism prevalence? A closer look at a possible link.

Polymorphisms in genes related to folate and cobalamin metabolism and the associations with complex birth defects.

Two MTHFR polymorphisms, maternal B-vitamin intake, and CHDs.

Of interest is the significant interaction (p = .008) towards a nearly twofold increased risk (CHD) in mothers carrying the MTHFR 1298C allele and using a periconception folic acid supplement.


Pat
First of all, a bunch of those cites simply are not responses to the question, which was asking for cites showing that birth defects occur in the absence of food but not synthetic folate. Going down the list, actually, I have yet to find one that discusses natural vs. synthetic folate, and in fact many do not mention folate intake *levels* at all, merely the pathways by which it is processed.

Also, a quick check on the full texts of several of these that do discuss folate levels shows that they do not, in fact, differentiate between folate and folic acid, do not differentiate between dietary and supplemental folate, and in fact use folic acid supplements exclusively in the experimental designs (the animal studies use synthetics almost exclusively to ensure accurate measurement of intake).

I do not have time tonight to look them up and read them all. But I do not find them responsive to the question that was asked.
post #46 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mamatoto2 View Post
So, I have a question (because I knew that I should have been taking 5-MTFH rather than folic acid but it fell through the cracks in my mindful prenatal supplement planning)...is there a "critical point" past which the opportunity to benefit from it is lost (or severely minimized)? I recall that earlier research promoted the use of "folic acid" as being most important prior to conception and within the first few weeks after conception. I'm just about 30 weeks at this point and I'm wondering if it's too late to boost 5-MTFH at this point or if it's still helpful throughout pregnancy/BFing.

30 weeks is clearly past the neural tube closing, and I think past all the organs forming, at this point they're growing. But I'll always vote for figuring out the nutrients _we_ need and working on that. Your baby is probably quite like you and your other kids, and may need more folate, actual folate, than most, and B vitamins transfer in breastmilk quite well, proportionate to what mom consumes. Only a few minerals do that, so folate seems like a nice one to upgrade.

My DD#1 has midline issues, some sensory sensitivities, etc. My DD#2 has a sacral dimple, my niece has a tongue tie, and my nephew has autism, in addition to family histories of autoimmune ssues of various types. I supplement with B-12 sublingual, D3, Omega 3, calcium/magnesium, probiotics, floradix (iron) and liquid zinc sulphate as needed (to taste) in addition to Nature's Plus Source of Life Prenatal. I think I'd probably add on 1 Metagenics FolaPro/day and reduce my Prenatal to 1/day vs. 2/day. It would leave me with 800mg. 5-MTFH and 400mg. folic acid. I'd keep the prenatal at the 1/2 dose for the other things in it that I want to get, but I don't want to switch to any of the other prenatals that have a better source of folate because they all contain copper as well and I don't want to take any copper (I don't respond well to it, and my DD#1 had major zinc/copper imbalance issues, so I generally avoid copper like the plague). Any thoughts?
Probably the Thorne Basic Nutrients (their basic multivit) is too high in some things? It's higher than a prenatal but doesn't look generally unreasonable IMO, but I don't know your situation. They have 4 or 5 versions of their Basic Nutrients and 3 of them are without copper and iron (lots of us have too little zinc and too much copper). But if the dosage for that isn't right (they have 1000mcg of folate, half 5-mthf and half folinic acid, but I know that isn't your only consideration), then your plan seems reasonable.
post #47 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mamatoto2 View Post
So, I have a question (because I knew that I should have been taking 5-MTFH rather than folic acid but it fell through the cracks in my mindful prenatal supplement planning)...is there a "critical point" past which the opportunity to benefit from it is lost (or severely minimized)? I recall that earlier research promoted the use of "folic acid" as being most important prior to conception and within the first few weeks after conception. I'm just about 30 weeks at this point and I'm wondering if it's too late to boost 5-MTFH at this point or if it's still helpful throughout pregnancy/BFing.

My DD#1 has midline issues, some sensory sensitivities, etc. My DD#2 has a sacral dimple, my niece has a tongue tie, and my nephew has autism, in addition to family histories of autoimmune ssues of various types. I supplement with B-12 sublingual, D3, Omega 3, calcium/magnesium, probiotics, floradix (iron) and liquid zinc sulphate as needed (to taste) in addition to Nature's Plus Source of Life Prenatal. I think I'd probably add on 1 Metagenics FolaPro/day and reduce my Prenatal to 1/day vs. 2/day. It would leave me with 800mg. 5-MTFH and 400mg. folic acid. I'd keep the prenatal at the 1/2 dose for the other things in it that I want to get, but I don't want to switch to any of the other prenatals that have a better source of folate because they all contain copper as well and I don't want to take any copper (I don't respond well to it, and my DD#1 had major zinc/copper imbalance issues, so I generally avoid copper like the plague). Any thoughts?
Bolding mine.

No the neural tube is already formed. It's within the first 3-4 weeks of gestation (might even be 6 weeks...I just know it's very early pregnancy this happens). Thats what one of our Neurosurgeons told us.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neural_tube_defect
post #48 of 126
subbing
post #49 of 126
Folate versus Folic Acid is an organic chemistry issue.

-ate and -ic acid are NOT the same. one is an oxidized form of the other...technically, the folate is oxidized with glutamate molecules, which are removed during absorption as part of the natural digestion pathway. After the glutamates are removed, it is "free" to bond to other molecules (because it was and now it's not, and it wants to be again - a simple chemistry covalent bonding idea). That makes it biologically active. And, since our enzymes only recognize certain "versions" of molecules, folic acid renders a large part of our enzymatic process (and transcellular protein transporters) useless. Also, when eating food-sourced folates (versus synthetic folic acid) youre going to get all the co-vitamins, co-enzyes, and other complimentary molecules that are needed in the proper ratios to help absorb and use folate appropriately. It's like thinking you can just pop a "vitamin C" pill (made from who knows what in who knows which form) and think your body is going to use it.

I read a lot of people saying "that's stupid" and "don't listen to that person" without them actually (apparently) understanding that biochemically, an -ate and an -ic acid are SO totally different in the pathways of absorption and then of later use.

It's a basic organic chemistry topic covered in undergrad chemistry and ISN'T voodoo science made to trick people.

http://bloodjournal.hematologylibrar...79/11/2807.pdf
post #50 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by megviolet View Post
i don't think anyone would debate that folate is better than folic acid.

You mean that folic acid (synthetic) is better than folate (natural form).
post #51 of 126
Thank you graciegal for the description. And after a year of studying biochem with a great bunch of ladies, I am happy to say I understood it all.
post #52 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by KatWrangler View Post
Bolding mine.

No the neural tube is already formed. It's within the first 3-4 weeks of gestation (might even be 6 weeks...I just know it's very early pregnancy this happens). Thats what one of our Neurosurgeons told us.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neural_tube_defect
Hmm, interesting. So (not asking for medical advice) would you say this idea of a woman popping a folic acid pill every day of her pregnancy is...well, useless?
post #53 of 126
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by claddaghmom View Post
Hmm, interesting. So (not asking for medical advice) would you say this idea of a woman popping a folic acid pill every day of her pregnancy is...well, useless?
Whitrow MJ et al., Effect of Supplemental Folic Acid in Pregnancy on Childhood Asthma: A Prospective Birth Cohort Study.Am J Epidemiol. 2009 Oct 30.
Folic acid supplementation during late pregnancy is associated with an increased risk of childhood asthma, increased risk of persistent asthma, and poorer respiratory function in young children.

A study at the University of Adelaide concluded that the intake of folic acid supplements during late pregnancy increases the risk of babies developing childhood asthma by 30%, although researchers emphasized that their finding did not contradict recommendations to supplement folic acid in first trimester, when no additional risk was found.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19880541


Pat
post #54 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by claddaghmom View Post
Hmm, interesting. So (not asking for medical advice) would you say this idea of a woman popping a folic acid pill every day of her pregnancy is...well, useless?
It's only necessary prior to pregnancy and the first trimester. Thats what I was lead to believe. If the Neural tube is developed early in the 1st trimester, why continue?
post #55 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by KatWrangler View Post
It's only necessary prior to pregnancy and the first trimester. Thats what I was lead to believe. If the Neural tube is developed early in the 1st trimester, why continue?
The methyl cycle is responsible for clearing all sorts of toxins and methylating DNA, making and deactivating neurotransmitters, and many other critical functions. Folate is required for the methyl cycle. It's still a basic nutrient that's required by everyone, every day.

Folic acid and folate aren't the same thing, but folic acid can do some of the same functions that folate does. I'm currently 31 weeks pregnant, and have been supplementing methyl folate and folinic acid the entire pregnancy as well as before. No folic acid at any time.

Are you using folic acid and folate interchangeably? Or are you saying there's some benefit to synthetic folic acid over folate in terms of the neural tube?
post #56 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by KatWrangler View Post
It's only necessary prior to pregnancy and the first trimester. Thats what I was lead to believe. If the Neural tube is developed early in the 1st trimester, why continue?
Quote:
Originally Posted by whoMe View Post
The methyl cycle is responsible for clearing all sorts of toxins and methylating DNA, making and deactivating neurotransmitters, and many other critical functions. Folate is required for the methyl cycle. It's still a basic nutrient that's required by everyone, every day.

Folic acid and folate aren't the same thing, but folic acid can do some of the same functions that folate does. I'm currently 31 weeks pregnant, and have been supplementing methyl folate and folinic acid the entire pregnancy as well as before. No folic acid at any time.

Are you using folic acid and folate interchangeably? Or are you saying there's some benefit to synthetic folic acid over folate in terms of the neural tube?
Ok, so for neural tube development specifically, folate is important pre-conception and 1st trimester...but folate is overall an important aspect of healthy living.

??
post #57 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by claddaghmom View Post
Ok, so for neural tube development specifically, folate is important pre-conception and 1st trimester...but folate is overall an important aspect of healthy living.

??
Folate is a B vitamin that is just as necessary as vitamin C or calcium or protein. Each serves it's own purpose, and can't be missing from the diet without deficiency symptoms appearing.

The neural tube develops very early in pregnancy, and so folate status is especially important then - preconception and while the tube is forming.

Folic acid is a substitute for folate that works, kinda, but isn't exactly the same. So in cases of extreme folate deficiency, it could probably make the difference of a neural tube defect or not. But given the choice, I choose to avoid it and prefer the forms that don't require enzymatic conversion.

The way I first learned about all this was in trying to heal my dd's food sensitivities. When I replaced the folic acid in *my* B complex with food folate (lentils), in the next day or two, my nursing 2yo spontaneously broke her 'milk and video' addiction and decided to play by herself all day long. And the red rash that she got from raw tomatoes touching her skin stopped happening. Yes, folate is a very important part of healthy living, pregnant or not.
post #58 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by whoMe View Post
Folate is a B vitamin that is just as necessary as vitamin C or calcium or protein. Each serves it's own purpose, and can't be missing from the diet without deficiency symptoms appearing.

The neural tube develops very early in pregnancy, and so folate status is especially important then - preconception and while the tube is forming.

Folic acid is a substitute for folate that works, kinda, but isn't exactly the same. So in cases of extreme folate deficiency, it could probably make the difference of a neural tube defect or not. But given the choice, I choose to avoid it and prefer the forms that don't require enzymatic conversion.

The way I first learned about all this was in trying to heal my dd's food sensitivities. When I replaced the folic acid in *my* B complex with food folate (lentils), in the next day or two, my nursing 2yo spontaneously broke her 'milk and video' addiction and decided to play by herself all day long. And the red rash that she got from raw tomatoes touching her skin stopped happening. Yes, folate is a very important part of healthy living, pregnant or not.

You know about a month before conception I was taking a b complex and I haven't even looked at the ingredients...I'm sure it is folic acid b/c it's just a basic grocery store brand. Anyways, DD has been getting a contact red face with raw tomatoes and berries since then!

And I stopped taking it when I got a positive b/c I heard that B6 can impact milk supply. Rash, gone.

I was just blaming it on the dry and cold weather we've had. Now I wonder.

At any rate, you mamas are surely a great resource and I appreciate that you all take the time to explain these things.
post #59 of 126
Thread Starter 
Siega-Riz AM. Second trimester folate status and preterm birth. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2004 Dec;191(6):1851-7.
Conclusion: These results support the hypothesis that low dietary folate intake during the second trimester of pregnancy are associated with an increased risk of preterm birth.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15592264


Pat

post #60 of 126
I for one wish that I knew all this before I got pregnant with dd. Aside from a tiny sacral dimple, dd had no obvious issues at birth. But we found out soon enough that she has a gazillion intolerances, many true allergies (and at least one life threatening), sleep issues, behavior issues, etc. Most of them related to methylation. Now that I know more and can look at the medical history of my and dh's families, it is so obvious that even though the allergies are "new", the methylation problems have been around a long time.
I am very thankful for Pat and the other informed mamas on the allergy forum. And I actually think it might be good to post this on the on the ttc forum.
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