- This vitamin is called folate when it is naturally occurring in foods. It is called folic acid when it is found as a supplement or in foods enriched with this vitamin.
- Reduces the risk of neural tube defects in the fetus such as spina bifida
- Helps the body create new cells
- Supports serotonin regulation
- Can protect against heart disease
Recommended Dietary Allowance:
- Women of childbearing age: 400 mcg
- Asparagus – 89 mcg in 4 spears
- Avocado – 59 mcg in 1/2 cup
- Black-eyed peas – 105 mcg in 1/2 cup
- Brussels sprouts – 78 mcg in 1/2 cup
- Romaine lettuce – 64 mcg in 1 cup
- Spinach – 132 mcg in 1/2 cup
- Wheat germ – 40 mcg in 2 Tbsp
- Folic acid is more readily absorbed when taken in a supplement form or from foods enriched with folic acid as opposed to folate from foods.
- People with higher folate intake had a slower risk of one type of glaucoma. This may be because folate helps reduce levels of build-up of homocysteine.
Daily Upper Limit:
- Too much folic acid can mask a vitamin B12 deficiency
- “Ocular Eats.” Prevention. August 2014. 37.
- Iznaola, Iustina. (2014, July). “Dietitians dish: does the use of vitamins and minerals as dietary supplements improve health?” Retrieved from http://www.victoriaadvocate.com/news/2014/jul/29/gl_dietitian_dish_073014_245313/?features
- “How to Read a Multivitamin Label.” Nutrition Action Health Letter. November 2013. 7.