Why You Need Folic Acid and How to Keep It
Folic acid is essential to the human body. Also known as folate, it is the water soluble form of Vitamin B9. Vitamin B9 is responsible for the production of new cells and replication of DNA. I would say that is a pretty tall order to fill. So when the levels of folic acid are not quite right in the body, you can really tell it.
So who is at risk? Anyone can develop folic acid deficiency if they are not taking in enough of the nutrient through their food. However, this can typically be remedied by the intake of folic acid supplements.
Some people have an elevated risk for having a folic acid deficiency. Those people include ones on certain medications for conditions like arthritis, asthma, Chron’s Disease, cancer and colitis. Older individuals, those on birth control pills, those who smoke, those who are alcoholics and those under extreme stress may also develop this condition.
Before the deficiency can become something serious like anemia, however, it is a good idea to try and prevent the onset of any serious conditions and to put your folic acid levels back into balance. The best way you can do this is through your diet. Some great foods that are high in folic acid you should add to your diet include:
- Green, leafy vegetables
- Peanut butter
And there are many more than just these. Look at the nutritional information on your favorite foods and see how much folic acid is in them. If you are already getting enough of the vitamin through your food choices, you may need to take a supplement.
A balanced diet really is the key to maintain the appropriate levels of folic acid. This is especially the case for those with just a mild to moderate deficiency. But how can you tell if your folic acid levels are too low?
A great way to find this out is to use an at home testing kit that can detect the levels of folic acid in your body. This wellness panel test can detect up to ten substances at once in order to determine whether or not you have healthy levels of them. Four oral fluid samples taken throughout a 24-hour period is collected and then you send it off to the lab, which is a part of the test price, where your results are determined. Now, you cannot use a test like this to find out if you have a disease or illness, but it can help you figure out if you may have a problem.
If you do not feel right or your at home test indicates your folic acid levels may be low, it is a good idea to get yourself to your doctor right away for a professional evaluation.