Health Benefits of Folic Acid
Folic acid is a vitamin B compound, and can be found to naturally occur in leafy green vegetables such as lettuce, broccoli and spinach, asparagus, mushrooms, okra, beans, fruits, meats and tomato and orange juice. Folic acid is a water soluble vitamin, which means it can be dissolved in water. It is usually carried through the blood stream and excreted out the body through urine. Since, the body does not store folicacid, we need to consume adequate amounts every day in order to seek the benefits it vouches for. We need folic acid as an essential component for functioning in our body as it helps in the making of DNA, prevents anemia, helps treat liver and kidney concerns and stimulates the brain as well.
The benefits of folic acid rank high in number. However, some of the benefits of folic acid have yet not been confirmed, but others stay adamant on their prestige spots in helping the body function properly.
Here are some of the confirmed benefits of the water soluble vitamin B complex, folic acid.
One of the biggest benefits of folic acid is that it promotes kidney health. Around about 85% of individuals who suffer from severe chronic kidney diseases have high levels of homocysteine, which have been linked to incidence of strokes and heart diseases. Folic acid bears the impact of lowering levels of homocysteine and hence preventing kidney issues on a primary basis, and heart diseases and strokes consequently, on a secondary basis.
Folic acid coupled with vitamin B6 and Vitamin B12 is known to decrease levels of homocysteine in the blood which in turn helps people in risk of heart diseases. By lowering levels of homocysteine in the blood, folic acid contributes towards lowering cholesterol and preventing artery clogs.
Vitamin B’s and folic acids are documented to be highly essential in promoting and regulating neural health. Sufferers of Alzheimer’s disease have been found to have high levels of homocysteine. Since, folic acid helps lower levels of homocysteine and as it is, it is known to play a key role in neural tissue and cell growth, it is said to be effective in treating Alzheimer’s.
Folic acid has been documented to help with pregnancy health by reducing the risk of birth defects such as neural tube defects when consumed by pregnant mothers. Foods that are rich in folic acid promote the development of an unborn child’s spinal cord and brain when consumed by the pregnant mother. An inadequate supply of folic acid during pregnancy can lead to brain damage and paralysis in the child and even lead to a still born child. Furthermore, health experts claim that a mother can reduce the risk of neural defects in her baby by 72-100% if she consumes a multivitamin supplement daily with folic acid traces.
Colon Cancer Health
Another benefit of folic acid is that it seems to be helpful with colon cancer. Even though it does not carry the efficacy of curing the disease if it already has developed, it can reduce the risk of its occurrence.
Breast Cancer Health
Other than colon cancer, folic acid is also known to reduce the risk of breast cancer in women. It is said to be more effective if consumed with extra supplies of Vitamin B12 and B6.