Thursday, 27 November 2014

Folic Acid: Sources of Health Benefits and Deficiency

Health is an important factor in human life, because if we are physically and mentally healthy we can enjoy a healthy life. Healthy eating means eating a variety of foods with nutrients include proteins, minerals, carbohydrates, calcium, folic acid, vitamins and green leafy vegetables. Following are some of the benefits of folic acid.
sources of folic acid

Folic Acid

 Folic acid is a type of B vitamin normally found in foods such as spinach, strawberry, tomatoes, broccoli, dried beans, peas, lentils, oranges, whole-wheat products, liver, asparagus, beets, green leafy vegetables. Folic acid is also known as Floate.

Folic for Pregnancy:

Folic acid is known to prevent certain birth defects and women who consumed more folic acid had a significant reduced risk of developing high blood pressure. Birth defects occur within the first 3-4 weeks of pregnancy. So it's important to have folic acid in our system during those early stages when baby's brain and spinal cord are being developed our body needs folic acid to make normal red blood cells and prevent a type of anemia. Folic acid is also essential for the production, repair and functioning of DNA, our genetic map and a basic building block of cells. So getting enough folic acid is particularly important for the rapid cell growth of the placenta and developing baby.

When taken before and during pregnancy, Folic acid may also protect baby against:
  • Cleft lip and palate
  • Premature birth
  • Low birth weight
  • Miscarriage
  • Poor growth in the womb                                   

Conditons that causes folic acid deficiency:

  • Certain medicines, such as anti-epileptic drugs and antibiotics can deplete folic acid level in body.
  • Rapid period growth of the body needs more folic acid in childhood and during pregnancy.
  • Chronic dialysis for kidney patients can remove folic acid from the blood.
  • Small intestine duseases, such as gluten intolerance (coeliac disease), Crohn's disease (inflammation of the intestine), can reduce body's ability to absorb folic acid.
  • Some types of hereditary anaemia, such as haemolytic anaemia, breaks down red cells very quickly. To compensate the body produces more blood cells in response and uses up all its stores of folic acid.


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