Tag Archives: vitamin b12 deficiency

Dr.’s who recommend folic acid may be wrong

Homocysteine is a naturally-occurring amino acid that is a breakdown product of the essential amino acid, methionine and is linked to cardio problems, cancer and DVT. Normally the homocysteine is converted back into a harmless amino, cysteine but folks with gluten sensitivity may increase its buildup. Low levels of  Vitamin B, especially B12 and B6 also puts them at risk. Women with the highest homocysteine levels had 2.3 times the heart attack risk and also had low folic acid levels, which has also been linked to autism.

Doctors seem to recommend supplementing with folic acid to help homocysteine normalize and especially when recommending the Bs. But, if they don’t test you for a mutant MRHFR gene they can’t tell you which folic is good for you and which can be dangerous.  “Folic acid” and “Folate” are often used interchangeably to describe Vitamin B9. But, they are not the same. Folic acid, is actually a synthetic form of Vitamin B9, which is not found in nature, nor is it naturally found in the human body. In order for folic acid to be metabolized, it must undergo metabolism via the enzymes FOLR2 and DHFR, primarily in the liver although many people don’t have enough of these enzymes to do the job, such as those with an MTHFR mutation. These individuals cannot complete the final metabolic step that converts folic acid to the active form L-methylfolate (5-MTHF)

An epidemiological study conducted in 2007 found that men and women with previous colorectal adenomas, who took 1000 mcg of folic acid daily for 6-8 years had increased risk factors for colorectal cancer (10). It is certainly plausible to consider the possible cancer risks associated with excessive folic acid. It is for this reason that certain conventional cancer treatments use folate-blocking drugs such as methotrexate.

However, natural folates found in whole foods appear to be metabolized via the intestinal mucosa. A more homogeneous choice would be L-methylfolate which is the biologically active form of vitamin B9.  L-Methylfolate (5-MTHF) has emerged as a popular alternative, and has been used as a complementary medicine in several recent clinical trials. Studies show that L-Methyfolate supplementation is equally (if not more) effective than folic acid for increasing circulating folate in those with an MTHFR mutation. It is also highly effective at reducing homocysteine levels in healthy people. It is also better absorbed and interacts with fewer medications than folic acid.

Note: To find out whether MTHFR should be on your radar, you can take raw data from 23andme, or another provider like Ancestry, and upload the data to a site like Genetic Genie to determine whether you have one copy, or two copies of either MTHFR C677T, or MTHFR A1298C, the “mutant” versions of the gene.

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Antacids can mess up your gut.

stomachacheSo you get a stomach ache and reach for that antacid tablet or liquid. Ahhhh! Symptoms gone… but wait… soon they come back. What??? That substance that blocks the production of stomach acid also substantially blocks a normal body process resulting in side effects like more stomach gas, nausea, constipation and diarrhea. Plus it can cause nutrient deficiencies such as Vitamin B12. Acid-blockers reduce the secretion of a compound that binds to and assists the absorption of vitamin B12. So if that antacid reduces B12 absorption you can be at risk for a number of health conditions including dementia.

People using acid blockers are 4.5 times more at risk to develop pneumonia because without the bacteria from the intestine germs can migrate upstream to reach the throat and lungs. People also are more prone to hip fractures when they used acid-blockers. It is thought that these drugs may disrupt bone remodeling making them weaker.

So to avoid this antacid spiral you should consider adding to your diet digestive enzymes including Hydrocholric acid (HCL). The stomach bloating and gas is usually associated with a lack of HCL secretions if it occurs in the first 15 minutes. If it occurs after 45 minutes it is a sign of lack of pancreatic enzymes. For prevention a good all around multi-enzyme that includes protease, lypase, cellulase, lactase and amylase can help digest most of what you eat. We take these at every meal (because as we get older our pancreas gets tired and may not do the job as well), but with a big meal we may take two or three… very good assurance that the stomach aches will be a thing of the past and you won’t have to keep those antacids in your pocket.

ck out his mutli-enzyme we use: http://bit.ly/ZTjsep