Folate (Vitamin B9)

Folate is a water-soluble B vitamin. In the body, folate is converted to its active form, 5-Methyltetrahydrofolic acid (5-MTHF), which plays an essential role in making DNA, RNA and protein. This role is particularly important during periods of rapid cell division and growth such as infancy, pregnancy and adolescence.

History

Folate was discovered in the late 1930s by scientists who were trying to understand why some people were deficient in vitamin B. It was given its name because it is involved in many cellular functions, and "foliage" means leaves. In general, folate has been shown to be beneficial for heart health and cancer prevention.

Benefits

Folate is essential for the production of new cells, especially red blood cells and DNA. Folate deficiency may cause anemia and poor growth. Pregnant women should avoid folate deficiency, as it may lead to birth defects or other complications during pregnancy.

Safety

Folate is a B vitamin that plays an important role in cell growth and division. It is found in leafy green vegetables, beans, fruits, and nuts. Folate is also added to foods such as breads, cereals, pasta products, and other grain-based foods to be used by people who might not get enough folate from their diets. In the United States it has been added since 1998 to enriched breads, cereals (like corn flakes), pastas (such as macaroni), rice mixes cooked according to package directions with water or milk instead of water only (called enriched rice mixes), corn grits and hominy.

Conclusion

Folate is a vitamin that helps you stay healthy. It’s part of what makes your body grow and repair itself. Folate also helps keep your brain working well by forming new cells. Folate can be found in foods such as green leafy vegetables (like spinach), legumes, whole grains and nuts and seeds like walnuts or almonds.