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Folic Acid

Folic Acid: What are the benefits?

Folic acid is a part of the B complex of vitamins (B9). It performs a vital role in everyone's diet, as it is essential for not only red blood cell development and growth but also many other cells within the human body.

Folic acid is a manufactured form of folate. Folate, naturally occurs in a number of foods, such as avocado, dark leafy greens, citrus fruits, peas, beans and lentils. Biochemically folates act as chemicals that medicate one-carbon transfer reactions. These are important for the formation of purines and pyrimidines, which form basic building blocks for DNA.

A diet low in folic acid can cause anaemia, however it can be easily treated by supplementing your diet with folic acid tablets or by increasing your intake of foods high in folate.  It is important that pregnant women take extra folic acid during the early stages of pregnancy to help prevent spina bifida and other related problems in the baby.

The NHS recommends that women who might become pregnant should take 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid daily.

How folic acid helps?

Some suggest folic acid can be used to:

  • Help the body produce and maintain new cells
  • Is needed to make new red blood cells and helps prevent some types of anemia
  • Might help protect against heart disease
  • Help to reduce depression
  • Is related to fewer deaths from strokes
  • Help to keep the brain young
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Folic Acid

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